Some Simple Rules For Social Media Posts
Social media is the new advertising. Many people have stopped looking at the old media (radio, TV ads, Newspapers, etc.) as they now get targeted information live fed to them on their phones and tablets. The question is can you use that to promote your business. There are agencies who claim that they can generate the ‘buzz’ or traffic for you by building the perfect posts and viral media to quickly spread around the world. From what I’ve seen, they claim a lot more than what they can actually do. Marketing on social media is dependent on so many factors and whims, and viability of such posts are often extremely short lived as exposure reaches saturation. That being said there are a few simple concepts that can help improve your chances which I’ll talk about here.
While I’m no ‘expert’, I’ve seen enough of it over the years to get a handle on it. There’s a set of simple common factors and concepts that all the most successful social/viral marketing ploys use to get the clicks, likes, retweets and blogs. There’s also a few very important thing you have to remember if you want to use social media as an advertising/promotional platform.
You want your name at the forefront not other peoples
It’s all too easy to link/favourite/up vote/retweet something you see on your social media feed and share it among the people who follow you. There is nothing wrong with that, that’s what social media is all about, but the object of the exercise is promoting your business. You want people following what you are doing. You want them to think of your business name when they think of that informative or funny post the read. You need to have the majority of what you put up as original content from you. Now it doesn’t have to be long articles or lots of photos, because this isn’t your job. All you really need to do is to when you post a link or image, add why you thought it was worthwhile posting it. You can put a few lines of text of why you think your followers should look at the linked post, and even though you may have not created it it will help associated you with it in their minds.
Ideally though, the majority of what you post should be content created by you. You want your business to be thought of as the goto place. By posting examples of information that people can admire or learn from, that will build your reputation far faster than a hundred funny cat videos. If you want a practical example of it, the articles I write for the Copy Express blog are designed to be used on our Facebook page as well as appearing here.
The first five seconds are the most important
Like have stated in my 5/15/60 rule before and it applies even more in social media. Your post will be just one of many that the viewer will see. You have to stand out from the crowded feed, so your post has to jump out and catch their interest. Have a look at the websites like Buzzfeed where every heading is worded in a way that prompts you to click it to find out more, even if it doesn’t really match the contents (known as clickbaiting.) Now I’m not saying you should use such tactics in your posting, but sites like Buzzfeed are full of viral focused media so it’s a good way to see how it does work.
Be frequent but not at the cost of quality of the post or the goodwill of your name
This one depends on who you are and how many followers you get. While the most successful social media people often post new every day, somes many times a day, but that’s their full time job. You are simply using Facebook, etc, to promote your business and don’t want to spending all your time on something that is’t going to generate revenue. From the market research and comments by professional social media producers, the minimum frequency to retain followers/subscribers is once a fortnight. It doesn’t have to a fixed date or time, but as long as it’s no more than two weeks between each one, you will keep people looking at what you post.
Now you don’t have to have to put a lot of effort into each post, but remember this, each one going to spread out in the world far beyond your control and will never go away. Pick the posts on the basis that you are introducing yourself and/or your business for the first time to a complete stranger, you want each one to put you in the best light. If you do make a mistake and something comes across it’s’ not the end of the world. Even the big multinational have made some major miss-steps in the past, and they have huge dedicated marketing teams. If you post something that doesn’t sit well with people, then lean from the mistake and move on to the next much better post. It is still better not to make the mistake, so if you are not sure about how people will react to it then sit on it for a day and see what you think about it when look at it with fresh eyes.
You have one shot, but you can link to more
Social media at it’s heart is about sharing links between people and there is no reason why your posts can’t contain links to more of your stuff. You can embed links in tweets and blog entries, put your facebook page or website as a watermark to the images so people can see where it originally came from. Our posts on the Copy Express Facebook page are a prime example of this practice. Because my articles could never be made to fit in the 5 second rule, instead we post the opening paragraph which is design to give a lead in to the subject matter with a link that connects it directly the article on our blog which they can read at the leisure.
If you can’t be funny, be interesting or thoughtful
The most successful posts have a humorous element, after all the internet seems to be made of videos of cats doing funny things. We all see how fast things spread when people want to share the joke, so if you can post humours items on your social media feed do so. Now if you know you aren’t funny, or if friends and family have to keep reminding you that you are not funny, that’s not a problem either. Thoughtful and interesting items are almost as easily spread as jokes. Why not give people the benefit of your expertise in short pithy posts (although not too much as you want come and actually pay for it.) There are many informative feeds on a wide range of subjects that can be a source of inspiration for your own posts. You can have something as simple as a fact of the day. A bit of technical or obscure knowledge that most people don’t know is another good post fodder. Even something as simple as a beautiful landscape photo take from a jobsite where you are working can make for a popular feed item.
Get feedback but don’t let it get you down
All the social media platforms have tools for you to track how successful each of your posts are. When they peaked in popularity, what type of people looked at, how far it spread and other information is just a few clicks away. At the simplest level you can look at the comments people make on each post to see what others feel about this. It’s important because you will quickly see which posts are the ones that people like so you can focus your efforts of making more in the same style to boost your following. On the other side of the coin, due to the nature of the internet there are lot of trolls about and it can be disheartening to see them rip apart something that you thought was really good. Don’t focus on the individual comments, because there are alway be trolls, instead look at the overall response on what you have uploaded instead.
Interact with people, politely, and take everything with a grain of salt
One the best things you can do with social media is to be social. Let comment and ask questions on the things you have posted. Interact with people and build that one on one relationship that will turn them into customers. This the goal of putting up the posts in the first place, to get people interested in what you do. So like any good salesperson, listen to what they have to say, answer their questions, solve their problems, and get them to see you in person so you can close that deal. Take everything with a grain of salt, because people will ask dumb questions or say stupid things but don’t mean anything by it. Finally don’t feed the trolls. If you see a comment that reads like it’s meant to get a rise out of you, it’s most likely is. Just ignore those ones and the trolls will quickly go somewhere else to get their fun.
In closing I would like to say this just the briefest of oversights in what to make a good social media post. There’s a lot too it, and much it is relevant to the type of business you are in and what you want social media to do for you. If you want to lean more, book a meeting with us at Copy Express. We can discuss what platforms, and types of posts would suit your business. Create templates to make generating posts easier, and even help you set everything before you go live. If you want to find out more then contact us today.