Don’t be a social media bore: Provide the right content mix
By Cindy Schrauben
Great Gus Marketing
Have you ever been to a party and met someone who only seems to be interested in talking about themselves? It was annoying, wasn’t it? Well, if you’re only posting about your own business on your social media, then you’re that annoying person. And no one wants to be that guy, right?
It isn’t that you shouldn’t ever post information about your business on your social media, but you need to have the right mix. Generally, you should aim for 80% of your social media posts to inform, educate, and entertain your readers. The other 20% can promote your business.
What’s included in the 80%
What type of posts should you include in the 80%? First, think about why people come to social media. People are on social media to connect with others, to learn, and be entertained – not to be sold something.
Next, think about what interests your audience and create content that focuses on those interests. Don’t be afraid to share your expertise in your social media posts but do refrain from direct sales pitches. Use your knowledge to inform, not sell.
An excellent way to share your expertise but not sell directly is to post to your blog regularly. Again, consider what knowledge you have that you can provide to your audience. For example, if you’re a financial or accounting professional, write about how tax law changes will impact individuals and families. If you’re an interior decorator, describe how to update a room without breaking the bank.
Then, after you post your blogs, you can pull out pieces for new social media posts. You will draw followers in with good photos and content that interests them. In posts related to your blog, suggest that followers visit your blog for even more information. If you’d like to know more about why your business needs a blog, read my blog about it.
Another good way to engage with followers is by posting short videos that tie in with your blog posts. Again, pull out a part of the blog and talk about it. Don’t worry about having a polished, professional video. People want to watch videos from real people who share their interests or provide them with valuable information. And don’t forget to share a link to your blog when you post your videos.
In addition to providing information directly from you to your followers, consider sharing articles or videos from related sources. Curate magazine or newspaper articles or videos that pertain to your business and share them on your social media pages. The articles and videos will give your audience something new to engage with and shows you are keeping up with your industry.
When you take the above actions and combine them with actively responding to followers’ comments on your social media posts, you will build relationships with them. Once you create and nurture these relationships, you can promote your products and services on your social media. In other words, you can begin to sell – albeit softly.
What’s included in the 20%
Now that you’ve developed relationships with your followers, you can begin sharing self-promotional posts. Because they have come to know you and understand your expertise, they like and trust you and will be more likely to buy from you.
So, start including in your social media marketing mix information about your products and services. Be sure to highlight how your products and services solve your audience’s challenges. You can also post discounts and special offers for your audience. Consider posting exclusive offers for your social media followers as an added value for them being loyal followers and supporters.
Most of all, make sure your posts are persuasive and compelling. Get your audience’s attention, and make sure to have a call to action, so they know the next steps you want them to take.
80 + 20 = An effective marketing mix
Did you notice that about 80% of this blog is about the 80% of content you should be posting? That’s how important the 80% is. Once you create an engaging social media mix for most of your posts – the posts that add value to your followers – the rest – the part where you are actively marketing or selling – will feel natural to you and your audience.
Be sure your followers continue seeing interesting, value-added information from you in their social media feeds. And don’t forget to interact with them regularly. Don’t go back to being the boring, self-absorbed person at the party!
Based in Kalamazoo, Michigan, Great Gus Marketing specializes in strategic marketing, social media management, and copywriting.