Social media can be overwhelming. It’s a hungry beast that needs constant feeding. New visuals, new algorithms, new captions, community engagement, new features, it never stops. While it is tempting to create the same posts across all social media channels, social media success is just as much about the medium as it is about the message.
That’s why we’ve created a guide with our best-kept secrets to achieving success on social media, including the best types of organic content for each of the major platforms. Understanding this will give you the framework you need to create attention-grabbing content that allows you to reach your business goals.
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Social Media Isn’t One-Size-Fits-All
We would love to create a one-fits-all formula for social media success. Wouldn’t that just be epic? We could tell you what to post (and when) and you’d see radical growth.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. Even if you try to copy the types of content your competitors post, it might not work for you. That’s because their business is different, their key messaging is different, and their audience might be slightly different to yours.
The best place to start with organic content is figuring out what makes your business unique, because this will help distinguish your target audience. No two businesses can succeed with exactly the same content, even if their target audience seems identical.
Here are five steps to organic social media success.
Step 1: What Is Your Social Media Goal?
Being on social media without a strategy is like going on a hike without a map. You’ll start the hike with lots of energy, heck, you might have even brought some snacks. An hour goes by, you’ll go left and right a few times and then try that little loop that definitely did not bring you back to where you started. Once all the snacks are gone, you’ll find yourself exhausted, dehydrated, and thoroughly over it. You’ll backtrack and end up right where you started.
Social media simply cannot work for you if you don’t know where you’re going. We all want clients to convert, but how are you achieving that if you don’t know what specific steps you want your prospective customers to take? For example, click on the call to action, you’re your online store, and make a purchase? Or click on the call to action, view your website, and schedule a consultation? Why not try writing three down now.
Step 2: Make Social Media Work For You
Many editorial and retail giants will post several times per day. You’d almost think that they have a person or even a whole team working on social media posts only…. that’s because they do! But that doesn’t mean that you should too. The main thing is just to be consistent.
Consistency is key on social media, but that doesn’t mean consistency is the same for everyone. It just means that you need to be consistent within your own social media feed. Whether that means posting once per day, three times per week on set days, or five times per day. It doesn’t matter, as long as you can stick to it! That starts with goal-setting.
How much time can you realistically invest into social media each week? Once you have that going, we recommend grabbing your social media content calendar and start brainstorming ideas that fit within your social media strategy. This will maximize efficiency by helping you create and schedule organic content in batches.
Step 3: Know The Beast And What It Likes
Remember how we said that social media success is just as much about the medium as the message? This is because each platform has a different audience and a different method of engagement. That means you have to tailor your content for each one. Here’s an overview of how each one works so you know how to use to achieve your business goals.
Instagram is a visual platform, so it’s all about beautiful photography, inspirational quotes, helpful graphics, and engaging videos. Instagram is also putting the biggest emphasis on video with its Story, Reels, and IGTV features, while still offering many other features.
Instagram is continuously changing the rules. That’s why it’s important to take advantage of their newest features as these will lead to increased exposure. Right now, the feature Instagram wants to push the most is “Reels”. We could post reels day-in-day-out as they work miracles for your reach and they look beautiful on both your feed and your stories.
The second type of post that is a must in your content strategy is the “Story” feature. We love it for its uncontested potential of engaging with your audience. As for posts on your feed, as long as it’s pretty to look at and the caption contains a message relevant to your audience, both high-quality photos and relevant quotes will tend to do well.
Facebook is still the most widely-used social media platform, with an estimated 2.85 billion active users. While Facebook allows for many types of content, Facebook also places a strong emphasis on video. Facebook loves both short and long-form video content, even when most people watch videos on mute. With that in mind, videos should really take the front seat in your content strategy, whether they are made by yourself or sourced from other creators. But it doesn’t all have to be video, let’s be honest, they can be time-intensive to make. Feel free to switch these videos up with short posts and links to relevant content.
In the end, Facebook just wants one thing: for users to stay longer and engage more. The company’s new favorite way of achieving this goal is through Facebook Groups. Facebook even publicly acknowledged the importance of this feature! If you are looking for a meaningful way to communicate directly with your target audience, why not start a Facebook Group that fits perfectly within your niche?
LinkedIn can be an incredible platform for businesses. It’s highly targeted, which results in much higher engagement than competing with the noise on Facebook. The key to being popular on LinkedIn is to remember that this is a platform for professionals.
Similar to other social media platforms, LinkedIn is not a big fan of guiding users away from the platform. To achieve this, it really encourages people to put long-form written content on the platform, rather than to push people to click through to a blog post. In addition to long-form content, video also performs exceptionally well on LinkedIn, in fact users are 20 times more likely to re-share a video on LinkedIn than any other content.
Speaking of video, the final one we want to discuss is YouTube. It’s not just a video platform; it’s also a powerful search engine much loved for its tutorial videos. Have you even lived if you haven’t learned something by watching a YouTube video? While YouTube is all about video, you can also post updates and photos on the platform. One thing is clear, however. Long-form video is king on this platform. The ideal length of a video is between seven and fifteen minutes. Here are some ideas to incorporate in your video strategy:
- How-to/educational videos: Capitalizing on search will attract new eyes
- Review videos: Educate customers about the advantages of your products
- Behind-the-scenes videos: We all know that people are innately nosy
- New product launches: Share your excitement with beautifully styled videos
Step 4: What Comes After Social Media?
Social media is often described as the top of the “sales funnel.” While it’s possible to directly convert your ideal client through social media, it is often best suited to create awareness around your brand and ignite curiosity. But once you have them, where do you want them to go? It’s important to have your sales funnel laid out so that your ideal client can easily flow through it. The four stages are awareness, interest, decision, action.
Typically, most businesses will direct new followers to their website or landing page, where they can learn more about the brand, sign up to the newsletter or simply learn about the topic that they are interested in (have you started a business blog yet?).
Step 5: The Power Of A Little Payment
This blog is about organic social media success. So how does paid social media content fit in with that? Well, the best social media strategies have a bit of both!
Organic social media is where you build a relationship with your customers. This is where you have conversations, build trust, inspire them, and solve their problems. However, getting some one-on-one time with your ideal client in these continuous social media algorithms will not always be successful. That’s where paid social media comes in.
Paid social media ads can be fantastic to reach those people that your organic content just doesn’t seem to reach. Facebook Ads is incredible at targeting a potential audience that has already shown interest in your niche and once they come over to have a look, your organic content will be there to make them stay. It’s time to fire up that sales funnel.
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