As we discussed in yesterday’s post, although many companies are aware of Social Media, aware they need to join in and communicate, the difficulty often lies in the content and information you provide. Unless you’re lucky enough to be selling a product that is a naughty indulgence such as chocolate, confectionary or alcohol then creating content that is interesting and on a regular basis can be a real challenge.
Fortunately there are techniques and approaches that you can use that will take some of the onus of content production away from your own company. Using the same example as yesterday’s post, a company selling contact lenses will quickly fall short of ideas if they rely solely on their own content.
As we described, social media marketing for this product would focus around the lifestyle it allows you – holidays, festivals and camping would all be examples of this method. Content creation can be approached in a similar way. Finding companies that have a synergy or cross over with your own will enable you to increase the quantity and if you choose well, the quality of the content whilst still remaining relevant but more importantly interesting and engaging.
We’ll look at this in more detail below:
What is everyone else doing?
Sounds obvious but the first thing to do would be to look at what other companies are doing, creating and providing.
Are there different tones or messages for different mediums or industries?
Is there different content on each medium?
What do they actually say – is it product or service specific or is it more general?
Taking some time looking at other companies at the start when you are planning your approach is vital. Pick 3 or 4 companies (we recommend at least 2 recognised Brands ) from different sectors including one competitor and by studying what they do across all mediums will generate ideas as to how to tailor your own approach.
Build a picture or profile of what these companies are doing and how they do it through each medium, what tone or style are they adopting and what image are they presenting to their potential customers – fun, serious, light hearted, informational or authorative?
Apply this to your own business and industry, define at the start what your message or profile will be for each medium such as Google+, Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter.
Content – where, how and why?
As we’ve mentioned, the real headache for many companies is what they put on their social media networks but there are ways to manage this. As we have already discussed, our contact lense company has synergy with holiday companies, camping websites and festivals and the chances are that those companies will be producing content that will be interesting and relevant to some of their customers.
Find the popular companies or ones that are producing content that you feel confident that your customers would read and engage with. Retweeting, sharing, google plussing other content from other companies so that it appears on your own provides you with:
Quantity of content
In short, content creation doesn’t have to be all your own responsibility, social media is all about sharing, so share what’s relevant and most importantly interesting to your customers.
Who are you?
So far we’ve identified the way to identify tones and messages that other companies use across the various social media networks. We’ve also explained how content can be found by utilising other companies that have synergy with your own. Now it’s just a case of putting it all together!
Identify the tone and profile that you want to adopt for each medium, this will be individual to each company and industry. Our contact lense company may see Facebook as a great way of reaching potential customers whereas Easy Offices would look to Linkedin or Google+ for this, different approaches for different companies – find and develop your own.
Once you have identified the profile for each medium you can then look to build up a collection of ‘source’ websites for the content. Our contact lense company may want to look at the health angle, presenting itself as a trusted, reliable seller so may use content from Health or Medical Journals and using this on a medium where the message is authorative or serious. Selecting material consistently for each social media network will resonate better with those followers, they’re following you for a reason so stay consistent with your approach and material.
We hope this has been of benefit and given you some tips and pointers to use in your own Social Media Marketing. It’s also important to point out that recycling other companies material cannot be the only approach.
Use it both for content and for inspiration, make sure you are generating your own specific content for your own company. Look at what blogs or tweets are the most popular and see if there are clues as to what your various followers most enjoy and use that information when creating ideas for your own content.