Social Media Marketing has many moving parts. It’s easy to be confused about what type of content is best to share on social media.
Over the years that I’ve been providing marketing services, I’ve been asked a couple of common questions frequently. The questions relate to the type of content that should be posted on business pages and profiles.
Those questions are:
- What type of content should I post on my social media business Page(s)?
- How much of the content that I post can be used to promote my business?
Generally speaking, your social media content should do these things:
- Be Engaging – your posts should be of interest to your ideal audience and entice them to Like, Comment, and/or Share it. This is where you can build brand awareness. You need to be clear about who your ideal audience is and depending on your audience, there may be some creativity needed to make your posts interesting to your tribe.
- Be Share Worthy – Sharing other’s business posts can be beneficial to you too. Some business page owners will reciprocate by sharing your posts, giving you a shout-out on their page or a retweet.
- Promote (Your business and offering) – Share information about your business, your values, your services and products, your events, etc. You’ll want to keep your tribe interested in what you are sharing so they will pay attention when you do post promotional content.
Ultimately, the content you post on social media should be what your ideal audience wants to see or read. For many, this can take time to learn the content they like most and what they will engage with. You’ll have to test your posts and monitor them to learn which ones are the best performers. Find your best and worst performing posts by reviewing your insights on your social media account(s). You’ll also need to posting content consistently.
There are several formulas that are thought to be the gold standard for maintaining balance of the content you are posting on social media. Any one of these have been used for years by a variety of industries. The common thread is that all of them emphasize keeping your promotional posts to a minimum.
Does that seem odd to you? You are using social media to market what you sell and to increase your sales, right? And now I’m telling you about formulas that limit the amount of promotional content you post on social media about your services, programs, products or events.
The reason for keeping a low ratio of promotional posts is because most people get bored with those who consistently talk about themselves, what they do, what they are selling. For most businesses, this overly promotional approach can be a real turn-off to even the most loyal fans and followers. If you are doing this, be prepared for some people to scroll past your posts and ads when they see them in the newsfeed.
Think of it this way…When you have a real-life conversation with someone, do you talk only about yourself?
Remember it’s called “Social” Media, not “Selling” Media. The point of social media marketing is to build relationships and trust.
There is no hard and fast rule for striking the perfect balance of the content you post. Businesses that use social media for marketing will have different strategies, their target audience may have different demographics, and their industry could require a different content mix.
The 70/20/10 Formula:
- Engage: 70% of your content should add value and help you build your brand. Post content to educate and entertain your ideal audience; posts that will encourage your fans & followers to engage using Likes, Comments, and to Share them.
- Share: 20% of your content should be from other sources such as industry news or relevant content from others, including posts from those in complementary business. Examples include articles, social media posts, etc of others that your audience will love and will engage with.
- Promote: 10% of your content can be promotional. Include your offers and information about (including links to) your packages, discounts, sales, events, ads, etc. This is content about what you are selling.
The 60/30/10 Formula:
Similar intent as the 70/20/10 with a slightly different formula
- 60% of your posts should engage your audience.
- 30% of your posts should be content of others that you share. It works well to share posts of complementary businesses, not your direct competitors. Industry news that is relevant to your brand or your target audience is good to share too.
- 10% of your posts should or can be promotional.
The 80/20 Formula:
- Engage: 80% of your posts should be informational, educational, and entertaining. Can be a mix of your original content and posts of others that are relevant to your tribe.
- Promote: 20% of your posts can be promotional content about your business and offerings.
The Rule of Thirds:
- Engage: 1/3 of your posts should be engaging, educate and entertain your tribe.
- Share: 1/3 of your posts should be content of others that you share, see above examples.
- Promote: 1/3 of your posts can be promotional content about your business and offerings.
There may be a few others with different ratios but with similar intent.
What I’m sharing with you is offered to help you find a good starting point to develop the best content mix on social media that will help keep your target audience interested. Pick one of the formulas to start, then tweak the ratio of the different types of content based upon how YOUR tribe responds. Depending on your industry, your ideal audience and based on the results you are getting on your posts, there may be a need to tweak the formula. Check your insights monthly to review how your posts are performing.
Recommended Tools and Procedures:
Create and/or use a strategy and a plan that includes your social media goals. Your social media goals should be tied to your business goals.
Create a content marketing plan about what you are going to share on social media and calendar when you plan to share each piece of content. Make sure to include all of your events, product launches, speaking events, and their corresponding dates in your planner calendar.
Use your content marketing plan with a social media planner/calendar to map out the exact content you plan to post, when you are going to post it and the social media channel you will share it on.
Get into the habit of reviewing and recording your insights on your social media accounts or via 3rd party apps monthly. Adjust the ratio of your content and the type of content as needed.
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