By Guest Author, Ipsit Roy:
Are you getting tired of the same old social media campaigns? After months, or even years, of social media marketing, even the best of us get creative block. Like peering into a closet full of old clothes, we might find ourselves struggling to get inspiration from our usual social media strategy.
Here are some ideas for how to add pizzazz to your social media campaigns, and do more than share your blog posts:
1. Share user-generated content
Engage your audience and build relationships with your customers by sharing user-generated content that showcases your brand.
Happy customers are your biggest advocates; they spread recommendations about your brand by word of mouth. Share content generated by them to show how real people are using and enjoying your product or service. When you build credibility, it shows your customers that you value and appreciate their relationship with your brand.Are you bored of creating the same old social media marketing strategy? Well, no fear! Discover how you can elevate your social media campaigns with these ten easy tips in @RedBranch's latest article: Click To Tweet
2. Ask for audience input
Are you having trouble figuring out which content will resonate with your audience? Instead of pushing content on your followers, ask them what they want to see!
In addition to lightening up the load on your end, asking your audience for ideas is an effective way to engage with them. When you engage with them, it shows that you care about answering their questions. Plus, posts that directly address topics that fans are interested in will have a broader appeal. Have fans give you feedback in the comments section or on live Q&A videos, or post a poll with different options that your audience can choose.
3. Reveal what goes on behind the scenes
Behind-the-scenes photos and videos of your company humanize your brand. This form of content gives users a glimpse of the people behind your company, putting a face to your brand name.
Behind-the-scenes video content is a particularly effective method to showcase your brand’s personality. Try incorporating light humor and a casual, friendly tone to make your brand more accessible to your customers.
By revealing what goes on behind the closed doors of the office, you’re exposing your company in the most transparent way possible, helping customers build trust in your brand. You can even highlight accomplishments—like moving into a new office space or finishing a big project—to simultaneously form connections with customers and show company progress.
4. Create how-to videos
Another video format that builds connections with your audience is the how-to video. Users care about value, and the more free value your company offers, the better. Show off your company’s expertise in specific areas while providing customers actionable advice on how to use your product or achieve their goals.
Another benefit of how-to videos is that they’re highly shareable, meaning they’ll give your brand more exposure. These videos go hand-in-hand with other forms of content, like how-to blog posts, that are repurposable on your company website.
5. Hold a giveaway or competition
Hold occasional giveaways and competitions in which you offer participating customers a reward. Not only do these kinds of posts drive engagement and shares, but they’re also free advertising for your business.
Screenshot via Instagram by @navitasorganics, shared on the 12 Amazing Examples of Instagram Giveaways blog by ShareThis.
If you’re a furniture store, encourage customers to post interior design photos that feature your furniture. If you’re in the fitness industry, have customers post a picture of themselves reaching their fitness goals using your product or service. Then, hold a contest or lottery to reward participants with cash prizes or free products. Customers will share their posts, tag your company, and improve your reach by exposing your brand to their followers.
6. Update and repurpose evergreen content
Inbound marketing—the practice of drawing customers to you by offering them value—requires lots of high-quality, informative content. But it simply isn’t feasible to be creating heaps of fresh content every day, especially if you’re an emerging entrepreneur or small business. Instead, keep your brand clean by repurposing and updating old, evergreen materials in addition to creating new ones.
Update blog posts that offer timeless advice and repost them on social media. Recycle old content by changing its form; turn a how-to blog post into a video or infographic, or combine multiple blog articles into a single, informative e-book or video.
You can also adjust prior content to suit different social media platforms. If you post a short video on Instagram, for example, post a more extended, more detailed version on YouTube (and link to the YouTube video from your Instagram profile).
7. Go live on Facebook and Instagram
Users love engaging in real-time—with their friends, with influencers they admire, and with their favorite brands. Facebook Live and Instagram Stories are useful platforms for engaging real-time that tend to attract large audiences.
There are a few different formats of live video content you can create. First, you can create a vlog in which you showcase a behind-the-scenes reveal of a product or a day-in-the-life of an employee. Another option is to hold a Q&A to have real-time interactions with your audience. You can start by building a more personal relationship with customers as you engage with them on the spot. You want to make your customers feel valued by answering their questions on your live stream and show the world your brand’s customer-first approach.
8. Use third-party content to your advantage
Posting content from influential popular sources not only keeps your content fresh, but it also increases your reach. By sharing or reposting content from influencers, bigger brands, or popular media sites, you’ll grab the attention of new audiences who may not have noticed you before.When you're able to create a social media strategy that actively represents your brand image, you're able to build reliable connections with your audience. Discover how you can take your social media game to the next level with @Redbranch. Click To Tweet
While you’ll want to keep most of your content original, sharing third-party articles will help you fill gaps within your content, while providing your audience with even more value. Carefully curate any third-party content you post so that you offer your audience the very best. Did you share an article with your colleagues that they all found insightful and inspiring? Chances are your audience will like it, too.
9. Keep an eye out for what’s trending
Maximize your reach on social media by jumping on what’s trending. Find out what’s hot right now on Twitter and Facebook by checking out their list of trending topics in the sidebar. On Instagram, look for trending hashtags. You can find out how many followers each hashtag has by typing in that hashtag on the search bar. Some trending topics are timeless, like annual holidays or summer vacation.
Also, keep an eye out for trendy post types. If there’s a viral meme going around, try to tweak it, so it’s relevant to your industry and brand. Posts that offer online quizzes are also popular, as is Throwback Thursday (#TBT) posts.
10. Be consistent with your branding
Your branding needs to stay consistent across all of your social media channels. As you vary your post types and post across different channels, don’t forget to retain a consistent brand language, visual style, and tone. Your social media strategy shouldn’t be a haphazard collection of disconnected parts. Instead, it needs to reflect a cohesive brand image to make your brand instantly recognizable to your audience.
If you’re ready to take your social media game to the next level, try putting these ten ideas into practice. Spice things up with behind-the-scenes video, live Q&As and how-to’s, and more. Remember, the key is to engage your audience and capture their attention with original, creative, and genuinely useful content. Your customers will thank you for it—with likes, shares, and awareness of your brand.
By Guest Author, Ipsit Roy:
Ipsit Roy is a senior content writer and strategist with more than ten years of industry
experience working with CEOs, executives, and solopreneurs to help develop personal and professional
brands. He is passionate about writing and researching on evolving technologies, gadgets, online
marketing, art, and media. Ipsit holds a Master’s degree in English Literature and is a regular contributor for multiple international publications and websites.