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The Social Media Marketer

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3 Tips For Creating Sharable Social Media Content

 

 

For businesses trying to connect with customers via social media content, the entire experience can seem like an uphill battle. To begin with, Facebook doesn’t even show your posts to the large majority of your fans; only about 16 percent will see what you share firsthand.

To make matters worse, the people who do see your posts are so busy that, unless you are offering something truly intriguing, they're going to forget about what they read about two seconds after they read it. If your fans don’t share your social media content the very moment they see it, chances are they never will.

So is all this to say that social media content is just not worth the effort? Absolutely not! Social media puts you in front of hundreds of thousands of opportunities to connect with people—if you know how to use it. Follow these three tips to create sharable social media content, and make the platform work for you:

  1. Engage Your Audience. Just like content marketing, and maybe even more important on social platforms, you must engage the people you are trying to send a message to. Simply telling your fans that you’re the best isn’t going to cut it.

Ask questions that are relevant to your business but that your fans would find fun, entertaining, or intriguing. If you are an accountant, don’t go on every day between now and April 15th about how your fans need you in order to stay out of trouble with the IRS. Instead, ask them how their taxes are coming. What is the most dreaded thing about tax season for them? Are they getting a refund? If so, how do they plan to use it?

Getting your fans to respond to your posts is a huge accomplishment, but your work isn’t finished there. Respond to every comment whenever possible. You must let your fans know that you care about their comments for reasons other than increasing your page activity.

  1. Provide Something Valuable. Specials such as Facebook-only promotions, coupons fans can print, and even exclusive social media content available only through your fan page are all excellent ways to give your customers something of value. Even posting a fun or little known fact can provide value, because it leaves your fans with knowledge they didn’t  have before.

Just be careful not to go overboard. You can offer too many discounts, too much information, and “special” yourself into not making a profit if you aren’t careful. You don’t want to give the impression that your prices are so inflated that you can afford to run sales all the time, because, in most cases, that simply isn’t true.

Even if it is true, you certainly don’t want to make your fans think that you are trying to rip them off. One well-placed 50 percent off sale once every six months is more powerful than offering a new 5 or 10 percent off sale every other week. Promotions that reward fans for sharing your social media content are probably the most effective of all.

  1. Solicit User Generated Content. No, you can’t strap your fans down to their keyboard and force them to post to your page. You can, however, offer huge incentives for them to create social media content for you. Let’s look at a less than scientific case study for a moment.

My mom owns a small business. She’s been at this for more than two decades and has managed to survive even the most dire of economic climates simply because she has a loyal customer base that knows the value of the services she provides. She is not, however, a huge fan of technology, and it took some serious persuasion on my part for her to even establish a Facebook page for her business.

Even after she received an influx of new fans, she was still frustrated by the time social media content consumed without seeming to provide a whole lot of interaction between her and those fans. Determined to “get the hang of this whole Facebook thing,” she decided to offer a quarterly gift certificate drawing to her fans. Entering was simple: just post a picture of an item that came from her shop and your name goes in the hat.

Did it work? Absolutely! Now her page receives much more user participation and her only investment is the gift certificate—less than she’d pay to run ads online! Make your social media content all about your customers and they can’t help but share.

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