Social Media Engagement Starts (and Ends) With Content
Take a moment today and leave the office. Go sit on a park bench or in the middle of the mall, and just take a look around you. Notice how many people are glued to their mobile? On second thought, you could probably even just look around your office for this exercise.
Technology and the impact that is has on content marketing is increasing; people are using mobile devices to consume content at a faster rate than ever before. And now that they are consuming content at all hours of the day – from every place imaginable – there’s pressure to not only create consistent content, but to ensure that that content is engaging (i.e. don’t self-promote 24/7).
As we scroll through our social media timeline, frequently we’ll notice that brands tend to stand out amongst our “friends” because of the type of content they produce – primarily self-promotional.
If you’re a brand who believes that sharing information about your product or why you’re the answer for your target audience’s problems 24/7 will work, I hate to break the news to you, but this will most definitely not work.
Your potential customers want to enjoy your content and, essentially, you want your content to be what they pull up when they’re looking for a break from life.
Don’t just date, engage
While you should provide all types of content – blogs, whitepapers, case studies, videos, images, SlideShares, etc. – it’s important that the type of content that you’re producing fits the platform you want to share it on. For instance, a case study may not be the best thing to push across Instagram or Facebook, but it would be a great thing to share on LinkedIn.
By creating a variety of content – and sharing it on the appropriate social channels – your brand will not only engage more people, but will also build relationships with your target audience. And this is just as, if not even more, important as “selling.”
Why? Because in our social media-driven world, the more you form that relationship with your target audience, the more potential customers will begin to relate and respect your brand. And then, and it may not be until another six months down the road, but when they do need a service like the one you offer, they’ll use you, because you’ve established a relationship with them and they trust you as a brand because you cared about them and put effort into the relationship even before they were a customer.
Be real, in real-time
Likewise, just as it is important to publish engaging content on the correct platform, it’s also important that your brand is reacting to and publishing content that relates to the industry in real-time. Sometimes this can be as simple as tweeting or sharing a Facebook status when an event occurs (that relates to your industry).
Other times, if you really want to take it up a notch, it could also mean creating and sharing a blog post with your brand’s perspective on an event, within 24 hours of that event happening. Doing something like this shows your audience that your brand is present, that they’re paying attention to and reacting with their audience as something happens. They’re not just a distant name that schedules their social content once a week, for the week.
Technology is challenging us to create content that engages our audience; that provides them with a break from “life.” In short, social media is introducing an entirely new sales cycle – one that centers around consistent content.
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