For starters, it is important to remember that you do not need to create all of your own content. Sharing interesting posts from other pages or sources can be effective and time efficient. Start by finding people, organizations and businesses that are good sources of information. Then simply signup for their emails or like their Facebook page or follow them on social media. That way the interesting posts come right to you and you do not have to search them out. For example if you have a real estate firm, you should consider following the National Association of Realtors and local online news sources such as Curbed Chicago. These two examples are great sources of news on the local real estate and building world. If you own a restaurant you might consider adding your local restaurant association, tourism websites and food and nutrition pages to your connections. Another easy way to find important news is to let Google do it. Their Google Alerts feature allows you to save a search and they will email news that fits your search.
Creating your own content is more time consuming but it does have the added benefit that it lets people know that you are knowledgeable and a reliable source of information. Ideally you begin this strategy by adding a blog to your website. It is important to share your blog posts to all of your social media pages. This will bring readers to your website. Make sure your posts are original, interesting or informative. It is important that your blog post topics relate to your business. Whether it is about the industry you are in, a related field or the city in which you do business, make sure it is somewhat relevant.
Tips for getting the most out of your social media posts:
- Post a variety of topics. A range of subjects will bring in a large number of readers.
- Include a photo. Posts with photos have a much higher engagement rate than ones that do not. If you do not have the necessary photos, there are lots of online sources of free stock photos
- Include a video. Videos are by far the fastest growing aspect of social media and with good reason. They have a high engagement rate and are more likely to go viral.
- Analyze your numbers. If you spend the time to look at what kinds of posts are bringing in the most likes, shares and views you can better understand what is working for you and concentrate your efforts on those posts.
- Tag other people and pages in your posts. The hope is that they will share your posts so that their followers will see your content. Only do this when it is appropriate. It is best to say something complimentary about them so they will want their followers to see it. Put @ before typing their name and Facebook and Twitter will pull up a list of options. Simply click on your name of choice. A restaurant for example could say “we have a great vegetable entrée using the tasty organic vegetables from @nicholsfarm.” Nichols Farm will get a notification that you mentioned them and they will have an incentive to share.
- Use hashtags. Putting “#” in front of a word will group your post with other similar posts and make it easier to find when someone searches that topic. Use it sparingly, 1 or 2 per post, otherwise your content will look spammy.
- Avoid making mistakes. We covered social media mistakes in a LinkedIn post.
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