Do you like junk mail? Email spam? How about robocalls? Especially the ones at dinner? Gotta love those, right?
Wait, what? You don’t love junk mail?
So, when you are putting together your social media messages, why would you put “junk” out into your social channels? Content can be entertaining, insightful, or helpful, but please oh please don’t just send out more of the same useless, distracting clutter.
Good content marketing isn’t just about creating a schedule and putting out “content.” It is spending the time to create content that engages the people you want to get your brand and your message in front of. People who won’t just hit “Like”, but may actually buy your products and services.
While this sounds so straightforward, it is also easy to lose sight of the forest for the trees. We all would love for our businesses to have tens of thousands of likes on Facebook, and watch our tweets go viral. But a ga-jillion followers isn’t what gets results. Engaging with people who are loyal fans or potential customers, no matter the size of the group, is how to build a quality pipeline.
Let’s say that again. Volume of followers alone isn’t an indicator of a brand’s success: quality engagement is. This means quality in your posts, email campaigns, website copy, and pretty much anything else that you put out there with your logo on it. Spend your time on people who may actually buy something, or have done so already. As the wise folks over at AdAge explain “People Still Matter, Not Fans”.
While it might be a little rough on your ego when you seem to have a smaller follower group than others in your field, know that you are spending your time with the right people. You are too busy running a business to spend your day chasing the “likes” of people who will never need what you are selling.
This can seem intimidating. “How do I make time to have so much engaging stuff to say?” you might ask. Well here are some tips:
1. Determine your audience for the item you are creating. Then before you hit send ask yourself, “Will my audience find this valuable?” If the answer is yes, hit send. If the answer is no, then edit it or scrap it.
2. Find influencers in your industry. What are they saying? What keywords are they using? How are they getting their audience to engage? Follow their lead and engage with their audience. This can be through joining groups on LinkedIn, following people on Twitter, finding some Google Groups. But, choose quality – don’t join things that don’t impact your business, it will be a time trap that is hard to dig back out of.
3. Ask questions. What do my customers not know about my business? What do I wish I knew about my customers and prospects? Use these platforms to engage with those who are interested in what you have to say to see how you can help them.
4. Speak like a human. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in industry jargon and character limiting interactions like Twitter that what we say can look like a big pile of hashtags and links. Make sure that your target audience understands the acronyms and hashtags you are using. Otherwise, they may not find you or be able to interpret your message.
5. Schedule the heck out of your message. Posting only genuinely useful content might mean you have a lot less to say. That’s ok. Just say it more often. The shelf life of a tweet: a couple of hours, tops. A Facebook post? Maybe a day. So, it’s ok to say the same thing multiple times on multiple channels to make sure that your audience finds it. As I am sure you may have noticed watching any sporting event lately, the Ford, Coke, and Apple run their ads more than once in awhile.
So that’s it. Not that tricky, really. Say something that matters. Say it in a way that makes people like and understand you. And, say it over and over again so that they can hear you say it. Keep the “content” in Content Marketing and you’ll be sure to see results.