Brands new to an active social media schedule may face a familiar challenge: Finding content to share isn’t always easy! But businesses still have to be careful what they post, because their social media feed is used to make judgment calls by potential buyers.
This social media tension can lead to plenty of innovation…as long as the brand understands how to post the right content – and what’s not such a good idea. Our guide of smart dos and don’ts is an excellent place to start!
Dos for Sharing Content
Create a Regular Schedule for Posting Content
As a general rule, your brand doesn’t have to post every day, but it should be posting at least a few times a week to all the platforms where your target audience is present. Your followers are interacting with your social media profile because they want to see a regular flow of content – without getting overwhelmed or bored. Find the sweet spot for your business, and be consistent. Marketing automation platforms can be a big help with this, or you can find an agency to help you set up a schedule.
Stay Current with News and Advice
Not all great social media content can be scheduled ahead. Some of the most useful and popular posts are responding to current events in real time. That can include references to important news pieces, as well as messages to customers about closures, changes in a storefront, or dwindling product supplies. Enable your customers to make good decisions about your business, and they will appreciate it.
Share and Share Alike
Don’t be afraid to like and share related content from others on social media. This is a great way to stay friendly with local businesses (which can support each other online with a network of social signals), use customer-created content, and encourage more interaction. This type of shared content should always relate directly to your brand, community, or industry. Don’t be afraid to leave comments to start conversations or show appreciation, too!
Include a Variety of Content
You don’t need to constantly change content forms, but you should spice these up occasionally. If it’s been a while since you created and shared a video, post one for your next schedule content piece (there are a lot of great, easy ideas for creating quick social videos). If it’s been some time since you’ve posted pictures of your product or menu, put one of those up. Regularly link to your important landing pages, throw in an infographic, do a livestream – there are many great ideas! The key is to keep things interesting.
Take Inspiration From Others
Take a look at what types of successful content your industry is using on social media, and what your competitors are doing. If you find something you like, be willing to create similar content for your own account. It’s a very effective way to improve.
Don’ts for Sharing Content
Cram in Too Many Hashtags
Hashtags should be to the point, accurate, and original whenever possible. Overloading a post on a site like Instagram with hashtags won’t make posts easier for fans to find, and could lead to temporary bans or other problems. Stick with around several hashtags for Instagram, and don’t go beyond 10 to 12. Use only a few hashtags for platforms like Facebook or LinkedIn, and keep your Twitter hashtags down below six.
Copy Whatever is Trending
Trending lists can be a useful way to get ideas on platforms like Twitter. However, your brand should never just copy what’s trending most or whatever content is getting a lot of social signals. First, this dilutes your brand content and makes it confusing for followers to understand your specialty. Second, just because content is trending does not mean it will bring more visits or likes: In fact, very popular topics are often very diluted and it’s difficult for smaller profiles to gain traction with them.
Use Stock Photos
Every social media post should include an image – but that doesn’t mean a brand should use stock photos. Don’t put up generic pics found online on your social media platforms: Always create or share original pictures. If your team isn’t exactly stellar with photography, it’s very easy to take usable photos with just a phone and a little practice. The exception is if you are sharing a website or news video, in which case this will take the place of a separate image.
Use Personal Accounts for Anything Brand Related
Don’t mix personal and business social accounts, ever. It doesn’t matter if you’re just starting out, or have used your personal account for business purposes in the past. Always create a separate business account, and utilize the many useful business-only features that platforms like Facebook and Instagram provide.
Act Like You’re Talking to a Crowd
One of the best pieces of advice for companies trying to improve their social media content is to stop acting like you’re talking to a large group of people, and start acting like you’re speaking to one individual. This is a great way to add more depth and warmth to every social post you make.
When sharing any content, remember to always make sure the post matches the tone and voice of your brand. Blue Atlas Marketing can help you develop brand guidelines and useful tactics for deciding how your business should sound, but consistency is key! Everyone involved in sharing content should have common goals and understanding in mind – then your business is sure to see the results.