• Are you telling your brand story in social media?

A key challenge for social media managers is keeping the creative juices flowing. Even the most imaginative content developer can get caught in a rut from time to time. Fortunately, there are ways to avoid finding yourself stuck. One great technique is to set a monthly theme for your content.

The beauty of themes is that they provide you with a framework for your content and can help you narrow your focus. Even if even if you have no shortage of ideas, themes can help you stay on track so that you post consistently.

So now that you are sold on using themes, how do you get started? No surprises here, you create a plan! Of course, that’s easier said than done. No need to worry though. Here are seven steps you can follow to build a successful strategy for incorporating monthly themes for your social media content.

  • Assess what currently works – Take a look at which platforms work best for you now and the type of content that is getting the most traction. Remember that your objective is to get people engaged. You want to do more of what is working best.
  • Restate your social media goals – It is always helpful to remind yourself of your goals. If your primary objective for social media is to strengthen your relationships with your clients, then a customer appreciate theme is appropriate.
  • Think about your customers – What type of content will interest and help your customers? Do they need information on your products? If so, a monthly “how-to” theme will work well. Could they benefit from getting to know your company better? Try a monthly “getting to know us” theme.
  • Brainstorm – Spend some time documenting a variety of possible themes. Get your entire team involved. Each one will bring a different perspective to the task.
  • Prioritize – Once you have a good list, prioritize the topics according to your goals and what is likely to be most successful in engaging your customers.
  • Decide how you will measure success – Set some targets so that you’ll know whether or not your theme campaigns are working. Useful metrics can include shares, likes, follows, conversions or whatever works with the goals you have set.
  • Rinse and repeatEvaluate your campaigns periodically to see what is working. Revise your plan to strengthen the themes that aren’t quite hitting the mark.

Working with themes won’t just help you keep writing, it will help your customers know what to expect. They’ll appreciate your consistency and come to depend on you for insight, inspiration, or a smile. Themes also give you the chance to incorporate content that is unexpected. One month you may focus on a technical topic, the next you might express gratitude or profile a customer or employee. The point is, you can take advantage of themes to keep your content fresh, engaging, and fun. So get started with themes now!

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Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

As a social media marketer, you know how important it is to have content that is high quality, frequent, and consistent. Sounds easy enough, doesn’t it? The truth is, it’s not easy at all. In fact, it’s pretty hard to keep producing quality content that is engaging, well written, and offers something useful to the reader. What’s the solution? In a word: storytelling.

In marketing terms, storytelling means that your copy makes a connection with the customer BEFORE it introduces the product. You can probably think of many TV commercials that use storytelling that way. Think of the ones that catch your attention because they hit your emotions. You may not even see what they are selling until the very last frame.

Focusing on the story rather than the product may sound counterintuitive, but the goal is to create a connection with the customer, not necessarily to drive them to run out and pick up the product. A good story will create trust and stay with a potential customer when it comes time for them to choose a product in your niche.

Once you begin to think in terms of telling a story rather than showcasing what you’re selling, you’ll find fertile ground for building new content. From stories that relate to why you started the business to educational experiences, your stories can provide your customers with new insights into your business and your products.

Before you start to build your stories, you need to make sure that you really know your customers and what type of information they will make a connection. For some, educational stories will work best while for others, stories that tie to the news of the day will make the most sense. Whatever type of story you believe will work best for your audience, your stories should follow some simple rules:

Be Truthful: If your message is contrived, it will show. Use your own experiences to craft your stories.

Write Well: It may seem obvious, but your stories should not only be expertly worded, but they should also hold together by having a beginning, a middle and an end.

Be Consistent With Your Brand: Like all your marketing materials, your stories should communicate the image you have designed for your brand. If it is not consistent, your customers won’t believe it.

Make it Personal(ity): To help your customers connect to the story, make it personal and fill it with a personality that is compatible with your brand image.

To help trigger your creative juices, take a look at some of the best storytelling campaigns: Apple, GoPro, Allstate, McDonald’s, and State Farm are all master storytellers. Once you are inspired, get to work on your story and be sure to make storytelling a crucial part of your social media campaign. Remember, it’s not always about the short-term sale: you are building for the long run.

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

If there’s one thing that professional marketers agree on it’s this: creating high-quality content is hard! Not only is it hard, but it also requires near mastery of a number of tools and resources. So it makes sense that you want to get as much out of your content as possible. The best way to do that is to repurpose it or use it in new and varied ways. Of course, doing that sounds much easier than it really is. Fortunately, we’ve got some ideas that can help you get a jump-start on repurposing past content.

Share on a Different Platform

The most efficient way to reuse your content is to share it across multiple platforms. A short blog post can quickly become a Facebook or Twitter post. A longer post might work best on your LinkedIn account. The point is you should make the most of all your social media accounts as a way to get more exposure for your content.

Give it a Facelift

The biggest problem with content is that it quickly becomes dated. Sometimes all you need to do is freshen it up by taking an older post and incorporating a current issue or challenge you’re facing; once done, it’s ready to re-post. As this “fresh” material gains relevance, you can use it in an email campaign or a brand new social media post.

Shapeshift It

There are many ways to take your old content and create something entirely different. A blog post can become a slide deck that can be posted to SlideShare or turned into a video. An article with statistics can become an infographic. With a little imagination, you can take an old piece of content, dust it off, and turn it into something completely different.

Mix and Merge

If you’ve been creating content for some time, you likely have a great deal of information on related topics. Bundling complementary material to create an e-book not only breathes new life into old articles, but it also cements your position as an authority. If your content has more of a “how-to” flavor to it, you can package it into a webinar. Even better, why not do both?

With a little creativity and imagination, you can turn older content into a brand new asset. In fact, you can use the very same information to create multiple articles, posts, and tools. Done the right way, what you thought was a one-shot post or article can be turned into something that is evergreen and long-lasting.

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

If you use social media, then you know that the first commandment is “Thou Shalt Keep Your Content Up-To-Date.” Your followers will stop checking in if they see the same thing over and over again. Though you’re working hard to keep your feeds fresh and appealing, you might be overlooking these important elements of your social media channels: your bios and profiles.

If you have a social media strategy (of course you do!) is optimizing and updating your social media bios and profiles on the list? If not, add them to the top of the list. This to-do is easy to forget, and it’s even easier to underestimate how important it is.

What Your Followers See

What do your followers see when they look at your profile photo? Do they see what you look like right now? If not then it’s a good bet that some of your information may be out of date. Your picture should present a fresh look at your smiling face, and your profile information should be current. Even though you may think the photo looks fine if your hairstyle and fashion sense are dated then your community may interpret that as a lack of interest.

Remember, your profile photo usually has a prominent position so you can use it strategically as well. It doesn’t always have to be a picture of you or your logo. It can be a new product, a special announcement, or something else you are calling attention to. Links must work, and the description of your business should accurately represent what you are doing right now.

What the Search Engines See

You may not have given it much thought, but your social media profile is important to your SEO. Your profile should include the keywords and terms that are crucial to people finding you. What you say should be consistent across platforms, be carefully crafted, and be engaging. Long-tail keywords are particularly important so that your customers can find you.

Each social media platform is viewed a little differently so it can pay to do a little homework on what works best for each. Algorithms have become particularly important in recent years so if you haven’t updated your business description in some time you may not be making the most of it in SEO terms.

Freshen Up!

It’s true that you don’t need to update your profile as frequently as you do your content but your profile should not be neglected. Twice a year may be often enough to freshen things up. The specific schedule will depend on what is happening in your business and your industry. In any case, now is a great time to take a fresh look at both your bios and your profiles.

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media Training, Speaking and Strategy Consultations.


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