To see tangible results from social media, you must publish on-point content, and do it with a plan. Here are four ways to make your social media game stronger:
1. Start with Who, What and Why
What’s your social media strategy? If you don’t have one, take some time to closely consider the following:
- What are three to five business goals for being on social media? Is your current posting approach moving you in that direction?
- Who is your target audience? Think about demographics, interests and goals. How can your content address these areas and motivate your audience to do what you want them to do?
- What is your brand voice? Does your communication style on social match your business brand and your audience?
Every piece of content you post should tie back to your business goals and have an obvious benefit to your followers (and maybe even their followers). Consider how each post might educate, entertain, inspire, empower and/or offer a special opportunity or discount.
2. Repurpose Almost Everything
Constantly creating new content for your social channels can be very time consuming. The solution is to get creative about how you repurpose the content you already have.
For example, imagine a friend took a few great photos and a short video of you demonstrating various exercises at the gym. You might publish the photos in a blog post and put the video on YouTube. You could also post the pics and video on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. What else? There are still a myriad of ways to recycle that same content:
- Use the photos as a background to create inspiring memes with motivational messages (you can easily do this with any app that allows you to add text overlay, such as Canva or InstaQuote).
- Assemble the photos into a collage with an app like Layout; displaying photos in a grid format gives them a new look.
- Create a slideshow with all the images. This animated effect is especially eye-catching in social feeds. You can make slideshows with Adobe Spark (free on mobile and desktop) or the posting features available though any Facebook Business Page.
- Head over to makeagif.com (it's free) and turn a few seconds of your YouTube video into a GIF that you can post on Facebook and Twitter.
- Take screenshots from your YouTube video and turn those images into memes, a collage or a slideshow.
Repurposing content saves time. Just be sure to avoid posting all the recycled content in the same week on the same social channel. Use an editorial calendar, such as the one from FitTemplates.com, to map out post dates and times for various pieces of content and social accounts.
3. Know When to Post
As you put together your editorial calendar, consider the best times to post on different social channels. Knowing this might require some trial and error, but you can gain a lot of insight by looking at metrics for when your audience is most active on each social channel.
- Twitter: Check Tweriod.com to see when your followers frequent Twitter. Or use Twitter’s free analytics for follower demographics—you can view top follower locations, which gives you insight into posting by time zones.
- Facebook: If you have a Business Page, check Insights for high traffic times based on your own followers’ Facebook activity.
- Instagram: If you have a business account, you can view both top follower locations for time zones and follower activity for each hour of the day right in the Instagram app.
4. Step Up Your Hashtag Game
Even though hashtags are a huge part of social media, they are often misunderstood and not used all that effectively for marketing. For simplicity, think of hashtags as having one of three main purposes:
- Keyword: Use hashtags as keywords to make them searchable on each social channel and to place your content with other content on a specific topic, such as #PilatesReformer or #KettlebellTraining.
- Branding: You can include hashtags to serve as keywords, but also to help promote and create awareness for a brand. For example, #acefitness or #Trainerize.
- Joke or soundbite: This hashtag approach is used to communicate a message or idea as a soundbite, often in a humorous way. It’s not meant as a keyword or branding mechanism. Example: #NotAMorningPerson
Just as you want to create an overall social media strategy, you’ll want to amp up your hashtag game with a strategy of its own. One pivotal component of this strategy is to research any of the keyword-driven hashtags you use per social channel.
For example, many hashtags are either too broad to be useful (#fitness) or could be inconsistent with your brand’s voice and values around health and fitness.
Search every hashtag you plan to drop into a post to ensure your content will be categorized into appropriate streams (i.e., a stream of other posts from people who have used the same hashtag you use). Researching hashtags is especially important on Instagram, where they help tremendously with gaining reach and awareness.
Strategizing your social media with the tips in this blog post isn’t hard—it just requires a little additional forethought, time and know-how. Get started today and you’ll make your social media game that much stronger.