Guest post by Maja Jaredic (my lead social marketer)
Content is the lifeblood of your social media presence.
Fresh, up-to-date social media posts that bring value to your audience is the foundation for the survival and success of your online existence.
Sure, there are a lot of steps you need to take in order to run your social media marketing efficiently,
Because content is who you are. It is what you believe in, sell, teach, what your brand is all about.
In order to be seen as a thought leader and expert in your field, you need to provide your audience with the appropriate social media posts – content that will show your expertise, value system and build your brand.
But the golden question is, "What should I post, exactly?"
Well, over the course of 6 months, we made it our mission to find out. Here's what we discovered works best as a social media plan.
Internal content is content created by you – your blog posts, videos, pictures, etc.
It's anything that adds value to your audience, clients and prospects. (This doesn't include promotion. We'll get to that later)
Internal content should provide value for the readers, something new to learn or just a funny picture to brighten their day. It's about them.
During our study, blog posts proved to be the best internal content you can share.
Not only do you provide value for followers, but you'll see an increase in traffic & you'll build a reputation as someone who really knows their stuff! (What’s not to like there?) ;)
Below is an example of what our internal posts look like:
These are social media posts created by other people, businesses or brands that you believe fit what your audience wants to read.
It's usually content created by leaders in your niche.
So, find some authorities in your field (if you haven’t already) and follow what they do.
If you read something that you think will resonate with your crowd, add it to a spreadsheet of external content and begin scheduling it out.
Tag the proper author of the post and it'll start putting you on their radar, as well as open up the door for a retweet.
Here's an example of an external post:
External posts will give your social media strategy a huge boost.
Inspirational posts are our favorite.
They serve the purpose of motivating followers, building respect and positioning yourself as a thought-leader in your industry. (Not to mention, they get tons of shares, likes, retweets, comments – and everybody loves them.)
Find some good quotes that are relevant to your niche and motivate your tribe. Inspire them, make them laugh, trigger a reaction.
Inspirational pictures work great for us. It's an awesome way to promote your brand in a non-pushy way. Put a good quote on a picture and add your webpage at the bottom – maximize potential traffic. ;)
Keep in mind, however, that it's about the quote, not your page, so don’t poke them in the eye with your website. Be relevant and motivational.
Here are some examples of inspirational posts:
Yes, your social media plan should have posts design to get leads & sell.
Promotional posts are what you bring to the table. Tell your audience about your current free offers, products, services, ask them to sign up.
Push them toward a desired action.
Ask people how you can help them, offer exclusive deals and never forget the 80-20 rule. (Offer value 80% of the time and sell to them 20% of the time).
John Maxwell said it best, "Leaders touch a heart before they ask for a hand."
Here's an example of a few different kinds of promotional quotes:
Of course, to get great results and not get burnt out, you'll need to stay organized.
When we first began, we were posting “on the fly” and without a social media plan.
Now, we have systems and spreadsheets for everything, which makes it easier and more streamlined.
The best practice we found was to create spreadsheets for all four kinds of content, pre-typed and formatted for posting. (See below)
We started by creating a spreadsheet with a list of all our blog content (internal,) a spreadsheet of 100 motivational quotes (inspirational,) a spreadsheet of 100 lead authority's blog posts (external,) and a spreadsheet of 10 promotions we had going on.
This allowed us to have a nice little archive for our social media scheduling and a base to build off (as we create new blogs.)
Internal, external, inspirational and promotional content are the most popular types of social media posts you can generate.
They help assure that you'll make sales and build a brand – without being another boring seller.
The goal is to be source of information and an expert in your audience’s mind! As we like to say... "People don't buy your product, they buy you.