Social Media Posts
First there was Facebook. Then came a few other entrants into the social media scene. Now we have more social media platforms than you can count on your hands. They’re used by more than half the people on the planet, and they’re only growing in popularity. You’ve probably thought about or tried using a platform or two for your business – but what kind of social media posts should you be creating and promoting? Here’s everything you need to know about social media posting for your business.
Social Media Posting Strategy
The mistake most businesses make with their social media channels? They just create a profile on whatever site they’re most familiar with and start posting any kind of content that comes to mind, whether it’s relevant or not. To make the most impact with your social media posts, you want them to all align to your overall business and digital marketing goals.
That means deciding what you want to gain out of your social media presence. You could aim to increase your brand awareness, increase conversions, build relationships with customers, or promote your products. Decide before you start posting – read all about creating a social media marketing strategy for more details.
When you’re developing your social media strategy, you should think about your target audience. Where are they spending their time on social media? What kind of things do they like to look at, engage with, and share with their friends? What appeals to them and what irritates or bores them? This is also a good time to figure out the social media voice you would like to use. Is it business-like and professional, casual and chatty, or informational?
Consistency is Key
One of the biggest keys to success in social media is posting consistently. You want to have a steady stream of social media content to keep your audience engaged. If you have too much time in between posts, they will lose that sense of engagement quickly or get bored and move on.
But it’s easy to get behind in posting if you’re running your social media pages yourself. You’re a business owner – you’ve got plenty of things on your plate already. The best way to stay consistent? Start with social media design and placement. Then set up a social media posting calendar. Think of post ideas in advance – they could be seasonal or topical for your business, or just related to evergreen ideas – and put them into a spreadsheet to organize them.
Schedule Posts in Advance
You don’t just have to think of ideas for posts early – you can also schedule them to publish in advance. This is incredibly helpful because you can set aside an hour or two a week to create and set up your posts all at once. Scheduling social posts in advance can be done through products like HootSuite or similar schedulers. This can help you stick to a consistent posting schedule.
But remember that scheduling posts in advance doesn’t mean you only have to think about your social media channels once a week or less. You should still be checking them regularly to scan comments for any urgent issues and to respond to your audience.
Social Media Posts by Platform
A tricky element of social media posts is that every channel is quite different. What works on Instagram is very different from what works on Twitter. Here’s a basic rundown of what you should think about when you’re posting on each major platform.
Facebook has been around the longest of the social media sites – that’s why its audience skews older and more general. A mix of imagery and written content do well here. But it can be increasingly difficult to get your organic content in front of your audience as paid ads dominate.
Instagram is a visual platform, first and foremost. If you sell any products or services that have a visual component, you need to be here. And you need to have a beautiful set of images to share. With the grid layout of the feed, you should create a cohesive look and feel for your posts to strengthen your brand image and awareness.
Unlike all the other social channels, LinkedIn is all business, all the time. If you’re a B2B company or offer professional services, you need to be on here sharing content. Images are nice here, but quality content is key, as is a professional tone. You can share your blog posts from your content marketing easily here if the content is relevant, giving you extra airtime for your blog.
Video content is a stealthy but steadily growing piece of the social media world. In fact, YouTube now is second only to Google in the amount of searches performed daily. Creating videos can be a great addition to your content marketing strategy and YouTube is a great place to share them. You can create how-to videos about your industry, behind-the-scenes peeks at your business, or other engaging content.
Twitter can be tricky to master – it’s all about the words. But it can be a great place to share your blog content and network with others in your industry. Keep it short, sweet, and interesting.
There are far more social media sites than we can cover here, and new ones pop up seemingly every week. These are usually either more focused on a specific niche or used by the very youngest cohort of consumers. If that’s your target customer, then you should make an effort to stay up to date on the newest trends. But if your customers aren’t under age 25, you probably don’t need to worry about Snapchat, TikTok, and the like. Your customers probably aren’t there.
Social Media Post Ideas
Now that you have your strategy and your platforms, it’s time to start creating your posts. Thinking about all the content you have to create can be overwhelming. But really, you don’t have to go too far for inspiration for content ideas.
Your business might have piles of existing content you can use already. Are you writing regular blog posts as part of your content marketing plan? You can repost links to those blogs on channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. Do you have plenty of product images from previous shoots or catalogs? Post those on your Instagram with a thoughtful caption.
Reusing the content you already have isn’t just saving you time on content creation – it’s also expanding the reach of your content. Twitter and Facebook have different audiences, so sharing a blog post to both isn’t lazy. It’s smart to get the most eyeballs on the content you’ve already worked hard or paid money to produce.
We’re not just talking about holidays here. There are seasonal angles to many businesses. Feature shots of your ice cream parlor in the summer sun on your Instagram, or shoot a quick fall video talking about sweater weather for your apparel company. But holidays are great opportunities for content too – don’t miss out on holiday shopping ideas or summer vacation content.
The power of social media lies in the direct engagement and conversations with your audience. That can mean creating content for them – or them creating content on their own around your brand. Pick a relevant hashtag and ask your users to share how your product relates to their lives. Then, with permission and credit, feature their posts or images on your feed. It provides excitement for the featured poster and gives you authentic content you don’t have to spend hours creating.
If you have an unusual product or an interesting production method or a cool office, a glimpse behind the scenes can be great content. Interview employees for short videos on Instagram or Facebook, or do a tour of your office. Show your audience how your product gets made. Share engaging stories from your industry or insights from your years in business.
Guidelines for Business Success
Developing and sharing social media posts that connect with your audience looks a little different for every company. But there are a few guidelines every business should follow to thrive on social media.
Keep it Professional
Social media can seem like a casual and cool atmosphere. And it’s not a mistake to write content or develop posts with a casual tone, if it works for your industry. You don’t have to wear a suit in your YouTube videos. But you should always keep in mind that there’s a line between the personal and professional, and err on the side of caution. Since it’s so easy to share content on social media, one gaffe can blow up into a big issue even if your following is relatively small.
Keep it High Quality
You don’t need to spend big marketing bucks to have a compelling social media presence. But you do need to make sure your posts are grammatically correct and free of errors, and your images and videos are high-quality. With the excellent cameras on smartphones these days, that doesn’t mean spending thousands of dollars on equipment. But it will make your small business look like big bucks.
Get Expert Social Media Guidance
Stressed about how effective your digital marketing strategy or how to handle all your social media posts and strategy yourself? Don’t be – just schedule your free business review call with ContentFirst.Marketing. We can help you create a strategy, design beautiful organic content that fits your brand, and write social media ads that convert to real sales. And we can do it all to fit your budget and your brand. Don’t wait to get the benefits of social media marketing – let’s get started together today.