In our last blog, we talked about how to create a social media content strategy. Now that you’ve got your basics in place, it’s time to go a little further and think about what kind of content you want to create! There are many different ways to connect with your audience, and while there’s no single answer for everyone, there are some general trends for content you can use for the best engagement. Use some (or, if you’re feeling adventurous, all) of these recommendations to maximize your engagement for social media.
First, you need to choose what type of social media content you are going to create. Here’s a graphic from Sprout Social that shows us the best performing types of content.
Once you know what type of content you want to produce, it’s time to choose your content themes. Here are some of our recommendations for the best performing content themes from tried and true research, experimentation, and data:
Infographics & Guides: Educational and entertaining, these helpful and informative posts make a viewer’s life easier, better, or just a little more interesting. Plus, you can really make them stand out with a bit of design and style! Just make sure it’s relevant to your brand, too.
Clients & Partner Highlight Posts: Do you collaborate with others in the community? Tag and shout them out online for a cross-audience bonus boost. This not only shows some well-deserved love, but it builds credibility and highlights your trustworthiness.
Reviews & Testimonials: Nothing is quite as sweet as social proof for online presence – so use positive past experiences from partners and clients to show why you’re an excellent choice for others. Plus, it reinforces brand loyalty when diehard fans see that you appreciate their opinions.
Brand Building: Social media is used for building your brand, of course, so its important to have original brand content that includes your brand elements to build awareness and visibility. Graphics, photos, and videos that show off who your brand is and why you do what you do are an important part of your social media content portfolio.
User-Generated Content: If one of your followers or clients has a social media A-game, ask if you can repost or share something they’ve made. Usually they appreciate the shout out, and this can be a constant source of great content. If you provide an amazing customer experience, your fans will be inspired to post about it and give you plenty of content to use.
People & Culture Posts: Here’s where you can highlight employees, show off your company culture, and invite your audience behind the scenes at team events. What’s a regular day for an employee like at your company? These posts are excellent to show who you are and what you stand for.
Contests & Giveaways: Every so often, hold a contest or giveaway to reward your loyal fans. Use hashtags to track entries and engagement, and get creative with your offering (which should tie back in with your business). These posts do really well at getting engagement and finding new customers, but be careful not to do too many as it doesn’t lead to strong loyalty on its own.
Incentives & Promotions: Who doesn’t love 20% off a purchase? Use an attention-grabbing image to get noticed, then hook viewers with a worthwhile incentive. Promote it on your platforms and watch the sales roll in – just make sure you set an expiration date, and just like contests & giveaways, try not to do it so often that people expect them all the time (aka, “The Gap Effect”).
Stories & Livestreams: Real-time, temporary content has carved out a huge chunk of online attention. You can highlight daily posts and boost authentic connections by using the Stories feature on Instagram and Facebook, or do a livestream to interact personally with your audience and customers. Go beyond the feed and engage where many social media users are hanging out these days – in stories!
Motivational Quotes and Inspiring Stories: You can’t go wrong with an empowering, inspiring story that helps show what your brand believes in. Alternately, choose a quote to pair with a relevant image, and relay a message you feel passionately about.
Staying Engaged on Social Media
Now that you’ve posted your content and taken these first steps, what comes next? You’ll want to drop in and actually put in some legwork with the people who are looking at your posts, how and when to schedule your content, and how to follow best practices for good results. This step is vitally important for boosting your content, drawing in an audience, and building a good reputation as a reliable, personable brand. There’s a lot to talk about when it comes to engaging with your audience – so check our next post for all the details on how to keep those connections strong!