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Why Every Brand Should Be More Like DJ Khaled and Kim Kardashian

Follow these five marketing lessons from two of the internet's biggest brands.

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With over 100 million combined followers on Instagram, which is currently the most actively used social network among millennials and generation Z, it’s safe to say that DJ Khaled and Kim Kardashian are two of the most watched brands online today.

Yes, brands.

Dating back to the rise of Snapchat only a couple of years ago where he was gaining 3 to 4 million viewers per Snap, DJ Khaled has gone from hip-hop DJ to A-list media mogul, author and spokesperson to the tune of over $20 million in 2017 alone while working with brands such as Weight Watchers, Turbo Tax and Ciroc.

Kim Kardashian-West, as well as younger sister Kylie Jenner, have taken a similar approach as DJ Khaled to engage fans online by turning them into customers and winning over their pockets through their personality.

For example, a recent Instagram post by Kim Kardashian, conveniently placed between photos of her with husband Kanye West and their children, has the caption “Peach lips available now at kkwbeauty.com” resulting in more than 500,000 likes and 6,000-plus comments.

It’s no secret that celebrities and influencers today have discovered what the major key to success is to engage fans -- and get them to buy -- which is why every brand must be more like DJ Khaled and less like a brand.

As the opening keynote speaker at Social Media Day Jacksonville 2018, seen in the video above, I shared with the audience of primarily social media managers and marketers why they should take lessons from DJ Khaled and Kim Kardashian and what they can immediately do to be more likable online.

If your company is struggling with social media engagement, below are five major keys to social media success:

1. Be real.

Whether you’re Nike, Coca-Cola or Walmart, today’s consumer doesn’t want to be sold to, they want to be engaged. The reason why influencer marketing exists and why people spend time consuming content from online personalities like Jake and Logan Paul, Tai Lopez and others is because these are real people who have a voice and thoughts to share with their fans. They’re also entertaining.

There’s a large disparity online today between the world’s biggest corporations and entertainers – i.e. “influencers.” Whereas it takes a company months, or even a year, to catch up and implement how they’re going to be “authentic,” creators live it every day and give their communities what they want -- an inside glimpse of who they are. As shared in the video above, all companies should look at what DJ Khaled does and model their employees to be their very own storytellers.

2. Be relevant.

You don’t have to be on every social network to be successful, but you should aim to be where your customers are and tap into social networks where you can get the most reach and possible engagement. Having a presence on platforms like Twitter and Instagram where content can be seen by non-followers by leveraging hashtags mixed in with a content strategy which showcases your employees authentically and spotlights your goods, products and services through stories can go further than investing in say, Facebook Ads or highly produced video. DJ Khaled has shown us how to tap into a highly active platform like Snapchat and now Instagram to take our followers behind the scenes through daily storytelling. The same tactics can be applied by virtually every company.

3. Don’t sell.

I know what you’re thinking: “I’m in business, how am I supposed to not sell?” But, today’s consumer is ignoring your sales rhetoric and instinctively swiping past your posts, which are perceived to be an offer versus a hook to engage. Companies today are struggling with using social media because they’re focusing on the end-game (i.e., the sale) versus the path to purchase, which involves creating brand awareness (being actively seen), tapping into conversations (otherwise known as engaging) with users, which builds loyalty, and acknowledging who their customers are.

While there’s no easy way to get around monetizing your online community, draw inspiration from DJ Khaled, who organically weaves Ciroc vodka into the narrative of his storytelling like you’d see product placement in a movie, or Kim Kardashian, who will give you four or five Instagram posts about her family and friends -- and then right hook you with her business.

4. Celebrate success.

The most significant competitive advantage that social media provides is the ability to listen to what’s said about your brand, competition and industry. Whenever someone buys from your company and shares an online review, tweet or tags your brand, that’s an opportunity for you to acknowledge your customer and celebrate the occasion. Where a lot of brands fail is they’re understaffed to the point that they completely ignore what’s being said about their brand unless they’re @mentioned, and often engage only if it’s a complaint or customer service-related post. Going forward, embrace and acknowledge the good just as you would the bad. An interaction is an opportunity to build customer loyalty further and repeat business.

5. Win more.

DJ Khaled’s most notable song “All I Do is Win” can easily be the anthem for any entrepreneur or business owner who aspires to be at the top of her industry. However, how exactly do you “win more”? Be consistent. What’s helped DJ Khaled and Kim Kardashian become two of the most recognized faces online isn’t their looks or last name, but instead consistently being in your face through your iPhone screen.

Social media isn’t a 9-to-5 operation; it’s open 24/7, year-round. Whether it’s outsourcing community management or delegating your content marketing and storytelling strategies to employees, companies must realize that in the game of online marketing the brands who make the most noise combined with getting others to share their posts are the ones who will ultimately win the most. However, it begins with the first point of "be real," which DJ Khaled and Kim Kardashian show us every single day.

Watch more videos from Carlos Gil on his YouTube channel here. Follow Carlos Gil on Instagram @CarlosGil83.

Related: Why Your Personal Brand Is Your Product

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