The BFG spin on all things digital,

social and creative – or otherwise blogworthy.

300 Million Reasons to Be on Instagram

Posted by mholliday on December 11, 2014



Instagram announced that it now boasts 300 million users, with more than 70 million images and videos shared each day. The platform also announced a more vigilant attempt to eliminate spam accounts, supported by a new verification system for celebrities and brands. Verifications will be handed out to a select few partners beginning this month, with the likelihood that this will become universally available early in 2015.

What Instagram did not specify was whether or not the 300 million referred to overall registered accounts or Monthly Active Users (MAUs), a more accurate number when considering the popularity of a platform. Twitter, for example, noted in its Q3 earnings report that the platform has 284 million MAUs. If Instagram’s numbers do hold true for MAUs, it would put the platform ahead of Twitter, for the time being.

It would not be a stretch to consider Instagram a more popular platform than Twitter, even if the numbers don’t pan out. We are consistently seeing a migration of key demographics moving from the traditional powerhouses like Twitter and Facebook to newer platforms, and Instagram has both the appeal of simplicity and the safety net of being owned and operated by Facebook.

That’s not to say Facebook and Twitter are losing. We are merely seeing a segmentation of how people use those platforms. They are no longer everything to everyone. Twitter, for example, has a firm foothold on the TV-viewing market, so much so that it is now a key indicator for Nielsen ratings.

What this announcement from Instagram does tell us is that our observations on platform segmentation are correct, and tactics for the various platforms should be based on the audiences that gravitate to them. It also validates all those brands and celebrities already there, though Instagram has long been considered a must-have for many when building a digital marketing plan.

If you are interested in exploring new platforms, or would like to know what the next Instagram might be, contact BFG Communications to find out what makes the most sense for your brand.

Comments (0 )

Are You Pushing Your Fans Away?

Posted by Kristen Powell on December 08, 2014

Facebook has been conducting an ongoing survey, and what many have known for a long time is now official — users want to see posts from friends and the Pages they care about, not promotional content. The survey did reveal one surprise, though, according to a recent Facebook for Business blog post: The posts people consider “too promotional” are actually coming from Pages they like and aren’t conventional ads at all.

So how do you know if you’re annoying your hard-earned brand fans? The survey listed three traits of too-promotional organic posts:

1. Posts that solely push people to buy a product or install an app
2. Posts that push people to enter promotions and sweepstakes with no real context
3. Posts that reuse the exact same content from ads

It’s clear that brands need to offer fans engaging content relevant to their life, and Facebook is listening to its users. Starting in January, those Pages that only push products may pay a price — new volume and content controls will be put into place for promotional posts, and organic distribution could fall.

This is positive news for brands that know how to connect. As the “shouting” from ineffective ads falls away, the dynamic, engaging content will rise to the top, opening the door for brands to find more fans and create even more brand loyalists.

Want to engage your fans instead of peddling links? Contact to see what we’ve done for other brands and, more important, what we can do for yours.


Comments (0 )

Don’t Let Sloppy Retargeting Anger Your Consumer

Posted by Kristen Powell on November 25, 2014

As it turns out, many consumers don’t like when a product follows them from site to site merely because it was viewed once on Amazon. And thanks to a study published by InSkin Media and Rapp Media, we now know exactly how many. Exchange Wire reported that “only 10% of 1,600 20-60 year-olds are more likely to buy an item after being served multiple times with ads for products based on their prior surfing behavior.”

More important, seeing even a relevant ad after research is over is “15% more likely to discourage than encourage a purchase.” 

So how do you make sure your ad is there when your consumer is ready to buy — without turning them off?

Careful behavioral retargeting goes a long way toward making sure your customers are seeing the right ad at the right time. Serving retargeted ads on relevant and trusted websites makes consumers more likely to click as well.

To see how ads can engage consumers instead of turn them away from your brand, contact BFG at

Comments (0 )

Video Cameras Take Content Marketing from Extreme to Accessible

Posted by on November 20, 2014

What was once only a tool for extreme athletes has become a powerful source of content for any brand: GoPro cameras. These devices are used to show the point of view of a single subject, capturing a personal vantage point. This creates a more relatable type of story than you might find in a more professionally produced film that uses multiple angles and types of cameras or lenses.

The places these small cameras can go are as limitless as the applications for the device, but the focus is often singular and intimate. Because of this, each video has a powerful personal story. It’s an excellent way to dissolve the barrier between audience and content.

Brands are starting to utilize the cameras to portray their goods in real-life situations. By cutting from traditional angles to this fixed perspective, the audience is not simply a passive observer in these ads, but involved in what’s going on to create a stronger connection. This is accessibility on a grand scale, making the experiences relatable to anyone. It’s what makes the device so powerful.

What is most compelling to many brands is that any consumer can use these cameras; they are inexpensive, portable, and durable. Properly motivated, anyone can produce a video featuring any company’s products or services. It’s engaging, consumable content, the type of earned media that can help influence consideration.

And it’s not even just for people. With GoPro rolling out a mount for dogs, there’s a whole new species of content producers.


If you would like to learn more about how content marketing can help your business, contact BFG at

Comments (0 )

5 Can’t-Miss Events at Geekend 2014

Posted by Kristen Powell on November 11, 2014

In just a few short days, designers, developers, bloggers and techies descend on the Hostess City once again for the annual meeting of creative minds known as Geekend. It’s easy to get carried away in the crush of technology and conversation, so to help keep you in the know, here are the five events you really shouldn’t miss:

1. People Over Pixels: Meaningful UX — If users don’t know how to interact with your site, they can’t engage with your brand. UX designer Cliff Seal explains how a focus on user experience helps achieve business goals. Friday, Nov. 14, 11-11:45 a.m.

2. Pitch Circus — In this allegedly friendlier version of “Shark Tank,” five entrepreneurs present their ideas and answer questions as they vie for the prize of a guaranteed spot in the new Creators’ Foundry BIZlab. You’ll see a sampling of the business ideas on the horizon and can consider if any might present a unique advertising challenge. Friday, Nov. 14, 7-8:15 p.m.

3. Keynote: How to Make (Almost) Anything — Director of MIT’s Center for Bits and Atoms Professor Neil Gershenfeld will lead this session on what exactly can happen when anything is possible. As the originator of Fab Labs, Gershenfeld has a lot to share about linking the physical and digital world and the future of fabrication. Saturday, Nov. 15, 9:30-10:45 a.m.

4. Mobile App Prototyping for Designers — You’ll jump from theory to practice in just a few minutes, all in the name of engagement. UX designer Jono Young leads this session covering everything you need to know to build a mobile app — no coding required. Saturday, Nov. 15, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

5. Crying, Waiting, Hoping… That’s a Terrible Marketing Strategy — Without data modeling, targeted marketing can’t achieve its full potential. Learn how leveraging offline data enhances online campaigns in this session led by Ray Owens, president of DXM Marketing Group. Saturday, Nov. 15, 2-2:45 p.m.

If you haven’t purchased them yet, tickets for Geekend are still available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Comments (0 )