Is creating social media content a constant headache for you? If coming up with Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter posts feels like a tedious chore you dread every single day, there’s a simple solution to it – and that’s viewing your social media platforms as marketing tools.
A lot of business owners believe that they must have some sort of an online presence and they know they need to be active on social media, but they don’t know what to post.
As a result, a lot of brands resort to recycling ad and promo materials, posting product descriptions, or even sharing random content that isn’t directly related to their industry or niche. Unsurprisingly, they don’t see any tangible results, and they get discouraged from being active on social media even more.
The fix for this problem is incredibly simple.
First, you need to start looking at your social media platforms as a way to market your brand, product, or service. Next, you need to identify what your target audience cares about the most. Finally, start creating strategic content that will help your audience solve their problems, keep them informed or educated, or entertain them.
Looking at your social media content this way, you’ll find it much easier to create and distribute content and start seeing a return in the form of a loyal, engaged customer base.
So how do you get started?
Social Media Platforms
First and foremost, identity social media platforms that your customers use the most.
This will depend on your target audience’s age, location, and occupation. For example, professionals in their forties and fifties are most likely to use Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn as their primary social media platforms. Younger millennials are more active on Instagram, and if you’re aiming to create content for college students, Snapchat and TikTok will be your best bet.
Some platforms work across ages and occupations, such as YouTube and podcasting platforms; if your audience is broad, video and audio content may be your best choice.
However, it’s important to identify one or two platforms that will give you the best results, then stick to them and produce exceptional content on them.
You may feel like you need to be present and active on all social media platforms, but unless you have a large marketing and creative department in your company, creating good-quality content for multiple platforms just isn’t realistic.
It’s best to pick just one or two platforms – let’s say, Twitter and LinkedIn or Instagram and TikTok – and focus on creating engaging content there rather than spreading yourself too thin trying to cover it all.
Once you’ve identified social media platforms that are likely to be the most beneficial, it’s time to get strategic about your content.
If your goal is to increase brand awareness and attract interested, highly engaged audiences, you should be producing content that is valuable and relevant to your specific industry or niche.
Let’s say you’re a company that sells haircare products. What should your social media content strategy look like?
Ideally, you’ll want to share content that your audience cares about and can engage with; in your case, it’s hair care tips and advice, information on hair health, hair colouring tips, and the like. If, on the other hand, you sell Paleo cookies, you’ll want to share Paleo dessert recipes, Paleo cookie ingredients lists, and Paleo cooking tips.
In other words, your goal is to create and share content that your target audience will find valuable, informative, educational, or entertaining.
As long as you do that, they will likely share your content, engage with it, follow your accounts, and, if you offer them value long enough, end up buying your products.
Social Media Calendar
Now that you see the purpose of creating social media content, know your audience, have one or two platforms you want to target, and know the type of content you want to produce, it’s time to come up with a social media calendar.
Why? Having social media content planned, created, and scheduled in advance helps you stay ahead.
If all your social media content is strategically created and scheduled ahead, you have a lot more breathing space to maintain your social media presence by engaging with your audience, replying to comments and DM’s, and keeping a pulse on what’s relevant in your niche.
You can also periodically look at your insights and traffic data to perfect and tweak your social media content to perform better and gauge your audience’s reactions, needs, and expectations better.
Looking at your social media content strategically and seeing it as a marketing tool rather than just something you “have” to do helps turn it from a dreaded chore into an effective instrument that will enable you to boost your exposure and build an audience that can potentially become a tribe of loyal customers in the long run.