Best Spotify Playlists For Work: InstaCollective's Weekend Warrior Playlist, October Edition, Out Now!

We’ve got your work friendly Spotify playlist of the month in this blog post for you. To find our older playlists, browse our blog or search “Instacollective’s Weekend Warrior Playlist” on Spotify. This month we’ve got smooth, RnB vibes above all, but it spans many great indie genres. Stand outs in this playlist include “Turn Time Off” and “Tell Me.” This is definitely one of the best Spotify playlists for work out there. Work friendly Spotify playlists — does it get better than this?!

Our spotlighted artist is Felly. Check out two tracks from his album Surf Trap (an infusion of a little rap never hurt, right?) near the beginning of the playlist. As always, we recommend you listening to this on shuffle. Without further ado, enjoy this playlist, another one of our best playlists for work! The playlist is below, but to listen directly on Spotify, click here.

How To Get More Followers On Instagram Using The Top Method Most Instagram Managers Won't Share

Organic Instagram growth is getting more and more difficult. Action blocks mean simply following accounts in bulk for your Instagram follower growth is not sustainable. They will block you from following before you’ve even hit 500 followers. On top of that, the bulk follows method is somewhat controversial. 

The “right” way to do it is a little more complex, and takes a little more time, but produces better results and staves off the action block. All the experts are saving this method for their eBooks and premium videos. It’s been elusive until now. I’m going to share what I call the “Like-Comment-Follow Method,” and your organic Instagram growth will never hit a snag again. 

Like-Comment-Follow is exactly what it sounds like. Search a hashtag that relates to your brand or music, creative project, etc., and find a top post that looks like someone who would respond to your offer would “like.” Start going through the people who liked the post (by clicking the likers at the bottom left of the post.” 

As you go through, stop at and click on the profiles you see of people who fit your target market. Leave a like and a thoughtful comment on one of their recent posts. Follow them on your way out. 

By doing it this way, methodically, you are attracting just the right people with every single follow you use. They will be grateful for your interaction on their profile. Combine that with these people being someone prone to love your brand, and you’ve got a recipe for success. 

Spend 10 minutes five-nine times a day doing this and you will see great results, fast. Another way to find posts to browse their likers is to find competitors’ accounts by using the search function and making a list. I strongly suggest using hashtags as well. Instagram follower growth will come with the combination of hashtags and competitor accounts. The search function on Instagram is a marketers’ best tool. 

Did you find this article helpful? Snag my new eBook, “The Everything Instagram eBook” on Amazon now!

To learn more about or work with Instacollective, hit our contact page.

How To Use Social Media Marketing To Execute Your Marketing Strategy Early (Case Studies)

As soon as you decide you’re ready to execute your business idea, you should be planning your marketing strategy. No matter how long until your official launch, there are so many reasons to start your marketing efforts early. Essentially, marketing builds a buzz around your product or service. This buzz builds momentum and excitement about your offering. If you wait until your official launch to start marketing, you’re already behind. 

To start your marketing before you have a budget, leverage social media. TI’m going to share the Drift method for snagging email leads from social media. I have executed this successfully as well. Drift is a SaaS company that invested in marketing at the on-set. 

First, I always say research is the first step to anything. Drift started by narrowing down who they should be selling to. They call this niche their “wedge” of the market. At first, they thought about selling to sales professionals and marketers alike. 

One form of experience-based research, Drift used the personal experience of it’s executive team to narrow down who at a company would have the power to make the purchasing decision. They ruled out sales people by noting that marketers were the ones who had the discretion to make changes to websites and other aspects of a business. They further narrowed it down to product marketers, based on the CMO’s own experience with product marketing. 

Drift did field research by compiling and culling through hours of interviews with product marketers. They learned that product marketers feel underserved and imperfectly understood. So, they slowly began a content machine just for product marketers. 

To begin nurturing leads via email addresses, Drift started sending social media messages to product marketers on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. Before long, they had hundreds of subscribers. All it took was a little personalization and understanding. Check out this article about sending social media messages to get your strategy down.

Social media is also the place to create buzz on no budget. One tech company I did some work for on Instagram kept their Instagram private, and the landing page their bio linked to password protected. All you saw on their profile were the words, “DM for the password.” I never got so many DMs on my first day working on an account. A little mystery can go a long way. 

I had another client who wanted to run a contest the first week after making his account. I told him the best practice was to wait until we had a few thousand followers, but he was undeterred and instead put $50 into an Instagram ad advertising the contest, and another $25 into an Amazon gift card to give away. A lot of people entered that contest, and again the DMs asking about the brand started rolling in.

Engaging, valuable, inspiring, or mysterious content is a great way to get people curious about your brand. Design your feed in a way that makes you stand out. Pick a color scheme, decide on what content interests your audience (the research I’d recommend in this case is to find some competitor accounts and check out their content), and use an app like Adobe Spark or Canva to create content for Instagram or Pinterest, or use an app like Feedly or Flipboard to help curate content for Twitter or LinkedIn. All of this content should also be linked to your Facebook through IFFFT. 

Finally, decide on which social media channels will work for you. Research the demographics of your clientele as well as the demographics who are on which specific social networks and you will know exactly where that buzz should be built.

Don’t know where to start? Contact us to get us working on your Instagram strategy.

Business Networking Online Series: Best Practices for Sending Social Media Messages

By Vince Martellacci, Founder

The power of using social media to send messages is limitless. From lead generation to networking and building your tribe, a social network is a great place to leverage messaging. Specifically, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram work best for sending networking messages. If someone tells you people don’t like DMs, don’t listen. In this century, most marketers don’t mind
DMs. They are social media marketers, after all.

Revenue, loyal clients, and an active and helpful community on social media are all good reasons to send messages. I know of a smoke shop in San Diego that makes $5000 a month on Instagram selling their products (which would not be okay with Instagram so I can’t tell you who that is, unfortunately). And I always talk about the importance of building your tribe and authentically connecting with others on social networking sites. You could help each other out by trading skills, trading referrals, or trading social media knowledge. Read on to laser in on some best practices for networking on social media over messages.

Connect or Follow Them First

This is especially important on LinkedIn, which won’t let you message people you’re not connected with. On LinkedIn, spend some time using its search feature to find people to connect with. You can search by “People”, “Job Title”, and more. Connect to about 20-30 people at a time, as a lot of LinkedIn accounts are inactive or infrequently used. Whoever connects with you, send them a personal message thanking them. Then, get to the point, be brief and succinct, and tell them what you’re hoping to gain from the connection.

On Instagram and Twitter, it is also a good idea to follow someone, but you can do it at the same time as you message them. But on Twitter and Instagram there are ways to connect, in the literal sense, with people before you message them. Start a list in an excel sheet or organizing app and write them a few comments on Instagram (replies and retweets on Twitter) the week leading up to sending your message. As always, be thoughtful in your comments and replies. Never use the same comment twice, and don’t automate. The personal touch is the only way real networking works on social media.

If you need help with Instagram but cannot afford or don’t want management, I offer a one-time coaching call with an in-depth outline and game plan for you to refer back to so you can crush it on Instagram on your own.

The Message: Keep it Personal

This is easiest on LinkedIn, where you get everyone’s real first name. Always address them by their first name when thanking them for connecting on LinkedIn. Since you’ll have to wait for people to accept your connection request one-by-one, you can simply send each a brief message as they connect to you (brief is key on all three platforms. Don’t lose their interest just by confronting them with sheer volume of your message before they see the content of that message). The messages don’t have to be radically different--you could even copy and paste, if you are making everyone the same offer, and just change the first name.

Instagram and Twitter don’t always give you a first name. Personalize your message in other ways. I do not recommend saying “Hi [username]” because that can look automated. Instead, spend a minute on their account or website and tell them what you like about their account or brand.

Never Hard Sell

It may be most practical to simply start off by thanking them for connecting. Personalize that message with something that stood out to you about them, so they have a reason to thank you. Once they’ve responded, it’s finally time for you to tell them why you connected. Are you trying to build your network, did they seem like a good friend to have, or are you looking for their business?

Be succinct, be direct, and then back off. My method is to let them know what I do and ask if they’d be interested in any more information about those services. That takes all of three lines if done correctly. Sometimes, if I get a good sense of them from their profile, I let them know
I can offer case studies. Otherwise, I just offer more info. But to start with all that information would be a risk.

Social media marketing is like a networking event. Imagine, when you’re on social media, that you’re at a networking event: let them enjoy their drink a bit first, let their defenses come down a bit. Don’t run up to them after too many drinks and start telling them all about what you do before saying hi!

And if they’re not buying what you’re selling, the night is young and the place is packed.

This was a special preview from my other project, Mercury Marketer’s, new website and blog (in the works currently).

Weed and Working Out: Cannabis Fitness is The Way of the Future

In this infographic, we’ll show you how marijuana and working out go hand in hand.

Marijuana and Metabolism

A 2016 study found that marijuana users were less likely to be obese.

Medical Marijuana Replaces Pain Killers Perfectly

Cannabis is safer than vicodin and better at relieving inflammation than ibuprofen.

Cannabis and Pre-Gym Jitters

Marijuana helps reduce gym-related anxiety and works well with repetitive tasks involved in working out.

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Marijuana Legalization in California: Lessons Learned, a Cannabiz Infographic

It’s almost been one year since recreational marijuana sales began in California. From the perspective of this medical patient and consumer, it’s not going well. First, as a medical patient, I am still beholden to the full price and the full amount of recreational cannabis taxation, which you’ll see shortly is out of control. Cannabis as a medicine is privileged in California.

Cannabis and CBD Edibles Are Through The Roof

We need regulations on the regulations. Edibles can’t come in more than packs of 100 mg, dosed out into 10 mg pieces. I was taking 30 mg three times a day when the regulations hit. Now? I can’t get the dosage I need. 100 mg is the same price 300 mg used to be. The CBD:THC 1:1 edibles that were getting anxious me through the day? No way. Those were my mood stabilizer and my anti-anxiety. Now I’m moody and anxious and way too into my bongs (snaps all day! Literally. All. Day.).

And that’s just my problem? The farmers, businesses, and even the average consumer? They have their own problems. Even my aunt has her own problems. She has been trying for literally decades to get a dispensary license. It’s virtually impossible in even the most liberal cities in the bay, and legalization has just made city councils even more resistant and even more quick to enact laws banning them.

The Marijuana Black Market Is Thriving, Still

This infographic will show that the black market is only strengthened by California’s so-far-failed attempt at legalization. One of the driving forces behind legalization is to end the black market, as was the case with the repeal of alcohol prohibition. The black market is the only logical place to go in California. Check out this graphic to see why, all info from The New York Times.

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Graphic: How To Use CBD and THC Together

THC may be going recreational, but we haven't forgotten that it is, very importantly, medicinal. As cannabis is making it's way to the mainstream, another component of the cannabis plant, CBD (cannabidiol), is gaining fame for it's medicinal uses as well. 

The idea that THC and CBD can work together is also pretty new. Described as "Whole Plant Medicine", the concept is that using the entire plant can double or triple the benefits. In this graphic, we'll explore the unique medicinal properties of CBD and THC, and how different ratios can lead to different mental health, and even physical health, benefits. We'll also talk about which methods of consumption may be right for you. 

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