• Are you telling your brand story in social media?

Tag: consistency

#BePrepared – Should You Schedule Your Social Media Content?

When it comes to social media marketing, there is an age-old debate. Should you schedule your content in advance or post it as you go? Honestly, there are valid points to both sides of this discussion that you should understand, as a small business owner, before making your decision on how to proceed with your social media content.

Posting As You Go

Just like in the writing world where there are plotters (those who create a plot before writing) and pantzers (those who just sit down and write without a plan), social media marketing is a world full of people who swear by either scheduling their content in advance or simply posting when they feel the need.

Those who fly by the seat of their pants make a good argument for being present. They are there for their audience. Their content is never stale. Since they just posted something, it’s more likely that they will be there to engage with the audience and continue organically boosting the post by responding to followers. They are more likely to actually use the platform and not just post and disappear.

Many business owners that prefer this method argue that their engagement is way higher when they don’t schedule content. Which makes sense if they are around giving their post traction as it goes live. Engagement really is the key to gaining ground on social media!

Scheduling Your Content

Does that mean you shouldn’t schedule your content? Actually, there are plenty of solid reasons for scheduling your social media posts in advance. This is why so many businesses prefer this method.

Consistency

Consistency is so important when it comes to your online presence. It’s hard to grab someone’s attention at all online but once you have it, you need to take steps necessary to keep it. Maintaining a consistent, reliable presence on social media is the path to nurturing and growing your audience. The path to consistency is to schedule posts in advance. Then it doesn’t matter how busy your day, week, month is – social media is working for you in the background. No more panics about forgetting to post something that day or last-minute brain drains trying to come up with good content on the fly.

Strategy

Do you have a social media strategy? To get the most ROI, or return, on your social media marketing it’s important to create a strategy. If you don’t have one of those, you are basically throwing spaghetti at the wall and hoping that some of it sticks. You’ll struggle proving that the time you spend on social is valuable because you haven’t determined which metrics truly matter for your business. If you are just posting as you go, it will be way more difficult to participate in social media in a strategic way.

Timing

The experts will tell you to check your analytics. Why? Because the best way to be successful is to track when social media success actually happens. What type of content is getting engagement? What time of day is your audience online?

Ideally, you would post your content at just the right time of day. The time that analytics has shown works well for your audience. It can be tough to do this well without scheduling your content in advance. If your audience is most active at 6:30 PM every night – then it’s likely you’ll be eating dinner at the most important time of day for your social media marketing. Wouldn’t it be nice to just schedule the content for 6:30 and then go and enjoy a meal with your family?

Productivity

Also, when it comes to productivity – the ability to batch tasks all at once has long proven to be effective. Being able to sit down and create and post all your content at once and then move on to other initiatives for the month is amazing. You can schedule the time each month to work on your social media without feeling overwhelmed by the task. Many business owners start questioning the value of this marketing approach when they feel like they are spending an exorbitant amount of time working on their own social media marketing. Who could blame them? Efficiency is more appealing.

Our Best Practice Recommendation

Now you understand why there is a debate over scheduling your business content. Social media is supposed to be social so scheduling in advance and walking away from your content is a bad idea.

You can probably also see the popularity of being able to use a scheduler, like Hootsuite or Buffer, to batch your social media content in advance and feel confident about maintaining a consistent, online presence.

As a social media expert, our recommendation for best practices when it comes to posting your content online is… do both! Set aside a few hours each month to schedule strategic content on all of the platforms where you maintain a presence. We recommend at least 3 posts per week but don’t overdo it. The more posts you create, the less likely people will see them (blame the algorithm and the billions of people using social media every day).

However, don’t just stop there. Make it a point to pop in every day and engage with folks on social media and post something timely. Whether it’s a picture of you at a conference or networking event, that blog you just published, or a live video – let your audience know that you are around.

This method of combining the two strategies ensures that you are consistent with your online presence but also reminds you that this experience is an exchange with your audience – not a one-way street. Social media is not a publishing platform where you post it, they come to read it and then they go away. It’s an experience and a connection with you, the business owner. The best way to #BePrepared for social media success is to understand the value of both methods and then build a social media strategy that actually works.

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.

#AwesomeConsistency – How Consistent Video Supports Company Culture & Expectations

We keep talking about how video, live video in particular, has the biggest impact in social media in 2017 – and that’s just facts. If you are planning to incorporate video into your social media or marketing strategy on a regular basis, to take advantage of the benefits of consistency, then you will need a game plan for the videos you create. Why? Because your videos will become a part of your corporate and personal branding – they will speak to your company culture and visually demonstrate your mission, vision and values to your audience. Expectations will be the ultimate result of this effort so if you do not begin with the end in mind, you could miss the mark with your video marketing.

Company Culture

How do your marketing videos affect your overall company culture? It’s a twofold approach. First, they act as an example to your team of what your business stands for both internally and externally. They can be used to showcase the brand, boost employee morale, and leverage both recruiting and retention efforts.

Not only are they a promotional tool for hiring the best talent, they build your company’s online presence in a way that sets expectations for the audience. Video is a way of demonstrating what you stand for, what you do, and how you engage with others. It establishes trust and a level of comfort, as your viewers start to feel like they know you and what you stand for. This lowers any perceived or hidden barriers between you and your followers. Know, Like, and Trust – the social marketing triad – is established by posting videos regularly.

Starting with Video

The great thing about video marketing is that you can begin with as little as a cell phone or invest in really high-quality production experts – depending on your budget and what you are looking to achieve with your content. With the rise of live video, people no longer expect an expensive end result. Often, just sitting down, speaking to your audience, and responding when they engage is all that is needed to make video worthwhile.

Stay on Point

If you don’t really understand your own branding yet – I mean backwards and forwards – then take time to fully develop your brand story before diving into video. Why? You are going to want to display those aspects of your branding that make you unique, interesting, and that differentiate you from your competition in your videos. Clear and concise content is what is needed to retain attention and audience.

Spotlighting

Do you hate being spotlighted or feel uncomfortable with the idea that it must be you on camera every week? Get creative or switch it up. Give your staff a voice by interviewing them. Highlight your products as they arrive or as you are packing them up to ship out. Show off your work space. Give viewers an insider’s perspective on how and why you do what you do.

Have a Purpose

As with any decent marketing strategy, understand before you start what you are wanting to get out of this process. What is your call to action? Are you trying to connect with your audience and deliver your brand messaging to more people (reach)? Trying to grow your list / sales funnel (lead generation)? Do you want to flip viewers into paying customers (conversions)? Communicate what you need and what is important to you, and your business. In order to get your audience invested in you, they need to understand your “why.”

If you haven’t started creating videos for your website, email newsletters, vlogs, or social media – then now is a great time to start! Soon everyone will be doing it and it will be more difficult to #BeAwesome and get the sort of results you can get right now while this movement is fairly new.

Ready to brainstorm and talk strategy? Book a discovery call with me!

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.

#AwesomeConsistency – The Value of Blog Routines

Consistency is relevant to your brand in regards to ALL of your content, not just social media. When a business owner thinks about social media marketing, a blog isn’t usually top of mind. However, blogging + social media can be a powerful promotion combination!

You’ve probably heard of other businesses that have been successful either as bloggers or on social media. This is not an either/or scenario as having a content plan for both will boost each individual effort.

Blogging

A company blog accomplishes a great many things. In this world of content marketing, it’s difficult to justify not having one. A blog is great for SEO purposes since it keeps your page looking fresh and consistently updated so that the search engines crawl it on a regular basis. It’s WAY better than an About Us page when it comes to showcasing your brand to your audience and allowing them get to know you – and what you do. It’s an organic, non-pushy sales, marketing and branding tool that often requires little in the way of monetary investment but, when done well, reaps rewards.

Blogging + Social Media

There are a great many benefits to blogging but my favorite is that it makes creating social media content so much easier! Pulling content directly from the blog can be used to great graphics, infographics, quotes, etc. A regular blog means consistent, but still relevant, content to pull from without staring at the screen and wondering what to post next, or posting from the same well over and over. This keeps the content fresh and interesting for everyone involved!

Blog Promotion

Many bloggers experience the same problem and that is their audience doesn’t necessarily think of hitting their website on a regular basis to read their blog. How do blog owners expand their reach and consistently get their content in front of people? They post their blog on their social media platforms! Linking back to your blog on various social media sites gets the information in front of the right people so that they drift to your website organically instead of relying on them to remember to visit your website. This also opens up the opportunity for people to share the blog with their own followers, boosting the reach that could have been achieved by the blog owner alone.

Blogging Routine

Since this month is all about #AwesomeConsistency – understanding the value of setting up a routine is essential. Your audience is being inundated with content – content consumption is at an all time high. Between algorithms, competition and short attention spans, it can be difficult to achieve the viewing numbers small business owners are hoping for. How do you stack the deck in your favor? Consistency. As with social media, having a consistent schedule trains your followers to expect your content on a regular basis. It keeps your brand, image, and content in the running and helps people find you. Having a break in content may convince viewers that you are no longer serious about what you do – that you are on hiatus – or that you are no longer putting the same focus into your work. Since there is more than enough content online to choose from, the potential that they will drift to your competition is high.

There is different advice when it comes to frequency and that it really depend on a lot of factors including your niche, your industry, and your time commitment. We recommend posting a blog at least once a month (at a minimum). The best results tends to come from businesses dedicated to posting weekly. Daily is too much and waiting longer than once a month is not enough. Find the middle ground that works for you so that you can commit to being consistent.

I can’t wait to read what you post and watch you #BeAwesome using the combined powers of blogging, social media and consistency!

 

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.

#AwesomeConsistency – How Consistency Makes Your Brand Stand Out

In our last post, we talked about why consistency is essential to your social media strategy. The focus was mostly on what your audience expects in terms of presence. However, there are many reasons why posting consistently is a game changer for your social and one of them is brand impact. Not only are you vying every day for your target audience’s attention, you are competing against other brands to earn influence and credibility as well.
With our shortened attention spans and the flood of content being directed at us daily, standing out as a brand on social media is no walk in the park. Without consistency, it is difficult to adequately get your vision across to your viewers.  If you haven’t managed to deliver this in social, you can bet someone offering something similar has cracked the code. 
The businesses that are doing this will be instantly recognized – at a glance. You don’t have to read an ad to know if it’s coming from Nike or Apple or Disney. Your peripheral vision, and this instant recognition of their brand, is enough for an audience to immediately pinpoint whose marketing it is. 
How can you switch up your social postings to make them more consistent – and instantly recognizable? 
Schedule
The first step is putting together a solid editorial calendar. Having a set schedule for your posts will help you when creating content but also helps your audience know what to expect from you. Brands can also post above and beyond what their calendar entails as long as they stick to the consistent schedule. 
Style Guide
Having an overall idea of what your brand will look like online is a good idea but having it all put together into a branding style guide is even better. If you are investing any amount of time into developing your brand, then a style guide is necessary for maintaining consistency. Here are some examples of what a style guide looks like to give you an idea of what you will need to pull together.
Tone/Voice
Writers (and copywriters) fully understand how essential developing the right tone for copy can be. Having a brand “voice” will remind you how to remain consistent. Are you sassy? Professional? Informative? If you could describe your brand in three words – what would they be? 
First you have to define your voice and then you have to ensure that you are using the same tone in all your branding. Here is an article to help you get started.
Graphics/Images
Last, but certainly not least, is developing visual content for your online presence, marketing, and social media. 
“Visual content has become so prevalent that it’s no longer just a piece of the marketing industry, but its core.”
Kimberlee Morrison
To get attention today, you have to invest in visual content. Videos, graphics, memes, infographics, slide shows – all of these are visuals. Our attention spans are ridiculously short and a brand needs high-quality, stunning, eye-catching graphics in order to grab attention and get noticed. Consistency comes into play when developing these because you want your audience to instantly recognize you, and your brand, when they glance at content you’ve created. 

If you follow these guidelines, you will find that you are already ahead of the curve when compared to much of your competition. Creating your social media strategy, so you can #BeAwesome at what you do, should involve a plan ensuring your branding is consistent across all channels. 

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.
  • 1
  • 2

Learn how to use social media to grow your business online with our video series!

  • Learn the fundamentals of social media
  • Learn how to build better brand engagement
  • Learn how to enhance your visitors' experience
  • Learn how to grow your business using social media strategies.

If you want someone to break down aspects of social media to get more clients and build your business using social media, this is the program for you.


©2018 Clere Communications / The Social Media Advisor