How to Tell a Story for Your Business in Social Media

Storytelling matters. It matters in our lives and it matters in our businesses. Human beings, since the dawn of time, have been drawn to stories. It’s how we learn and it’s how we relate to one another.

One of the reasons many businesses struggle with social media marketing is that they are using it strictly as a sales tool. However, people aren’t on social media for that reason. They open up their social apps to connect with other people, to learn something new, to become motivated or inspired. If your content isn’t doing these things, then it’s falling flat.

If you want to garner attention and interest on social media, you need to create content that your audience actually wants – and often that involves telling a good story.

Here are some ways to tell a story for your business in social media:

Create an Editorial Calendar

It’s difficult to weave together a consistent, relevant, and clear story if you aren’t certain what you are going to post on social media on any given day. An editorial calendar is a compass for your social media content, outlining what type of content you will share on what days. Once you have a plan for sharing and promoting your content, you can use your editorial calendar as the structure for your storytelling.

Without a calendar, you could find yourself in a situation where you are talking about your service one day, your ideal client another day, sharing a motivational quote another, and then forwarding an article that caught your interest later in the week. What’s ineffective about this approach is that there is no strategy involved. On any given day, you are posting content that isn’t related to the other posts. While you get points for consistency, this method of posting is not telling a cohesive story that motivates people to act.

Here’s a better example of utilizing an editorial calendar:

For the current month, you’ve chosen the theme of ‘Sharing Our Business Origin Story.’

You know that on Tuesdays, you share your main piece of original content (this could be a video, a podcast, or a blog post). On Monday, you post a quote from that content and share it as a kind of teaser of what’s to come. The day after you share your original content, Wednesday, you create a post that’s promotional, tying in what you do with what you created. On Thursday, you share some behind the scenes photos of a past project, your workspace, or an inside peek of how you began your business. Friday is a great day to engage your audience by posting a poll or asking a question.

In this scenario, your editorial calendar looks like this:

Monthly Theme: Our Company’s Why & Why It Matters

Weekly Theme: Our Origin Story

  • Monday – Quotes
  • Tuesday – Original Content
  • Wednesday – Promo Day
  • Thursday – Behind the Scenes
  • Friday – Engagement

For ease of use, keep the calendar the same every week/month, switching out only the content themes.

An editorial calendar is really the foundation of any successful social media strategy. It allows business owners to know exactly what type of content to create and also provides a structure around their storytelling and calls to action so that the output is easy to understand and has a natural flow (like a story).

Plan for Engagement

Any social media marketing plan comes with a word of warning: DON’T be one of those businesses that posts content and then disappears. Scheduling social media content is a great way to save yourself time and to stay on track with your messaging, but social media is meant to be… social.

Too many businesses use a post it and forget it strategy and then go around telling any other business that will listen that social media marketing doesn’t work. The truth is… it doesn’t work for absentee business owners. Have a plan for social media engagement. Even if it’s only 15 mins a day, 3 days a week – some presence is better than none.

Your audience will quickly grasp onto the knowledge that you aren’t there for them and they will take their time and attention elsewhere, leaving your story to be unseen by the people you want to attract.

Showcase Your Brand

We encourage our clients to share their personal and professional stories on social media as often as they can. It’s important that, in your content, you are showcasing your personality, your business culture, and all of the things that make your brand unique. This helps your audience get to know you better which builds both interest and trust. No one is going to do business with you until they trust you.

When showcasing your brand and business on social, have your audience in mind. You want them to be inspired by the good you are doing in the world, but you also want them to feel motivated to strive for more so that they’ll sign up for your product or service. How can you make your audience the hero of your story?

Not everyone is a writer and storytelling doesn’t come naturally to all. However, mastering the art of sharing your story online is the most impactful way to build your brand and grow your business.

Are you looking for social media training you can participate in, right from the comfort of your home?  Join others utilizing our 40+ video training series that you can participate in, at your own pace, from your home.  We have a Private Facebook Support Group, Monthly Ask the Expert Mastermind Sessions, FREE Ebook and regular new videos to support your marketing. Learn everything from creating the editorial calendar, to creating custom branded images, to the best use of hashtags, to paid ads and reporting by joining the Social Power Program.

 

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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.

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Top 3 Uses of Hashtags in Your Social Media Marketing

In all the social media trainings and presentations I do each year, hashtags is always a hot button topic. Businesses know about hashtags but many of them don’t understand their value or the appropriate way to use them. Hashtags are a powerful strategy for getting your content seen but only if you use them the right way.

Here are the top 3 uses for hashtags in your social media marketing:

The Power of Search

Since every social media channel happens to be a search engine, hashtags help people locate the type of content they want to find. If someone wants to know more about social media marketing, they can type in #socialmediamarketing into any of the social media platforms and find posts that have been tagged with that hashtag. For folks who use social media this way, and it’s common on platforms like Twitter and Instagram, if you aren’t using the right hashtags you won’t show up in those searches.

Hashtag Followers

On Instagram, users can actually follow hashtags the way you follow accounts, people or businesses. By following a specific hashtag, it allows users to find content on a topic they care about from people they haven’t heard from before. Otherwise, they’d be stuck only viewing content from accounts and influencers they already knew about. If you are a photographer, using the #photography hashtag will pull that bit of content into the feed for that hashtag and into the feeds of those who follow it.

Content Grouping

The original purpose of hashtags was to allow Twitter users to group content together. For example, if a conversation was happening about 2020 marketing trends and you wanted to see all the questions and comments attached to that conversation, everyone using the same hashtag (#2020marketingtrends, for example) would help people keep up with the conversation.

This also works well for big events. If the event organizer gets the word out that every post should include their official hashtag it helps attendees and organizers to see what everyone is posting about that event online.

For those not well-versed in social media, hashtags can be confusing. Sometimes, they can appear to be downright silly. However, if you understand why they exist and the most effective ways to use them then you can expand your online reach much further.

If hashtags and social media confuse you, give us a call. Our team loves to help business owners make an impact online with their social media marketing.

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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.

Setting Goals with Your Social Media Marketing

If one of your marketing goals this year is to make a bigger impact on social media for your business, then you are going to need to identify the social media marketing goals that will encourage you to stretch out of your comfort zone while interacting with more people, building your online community and presence. Here are some options to take into consideration when outlining social media goals for your business.

Followers

While this is increasingly becoming a vanity metric, this is still an effective goal if your audience base is small and you are struggling to build community or get engagement on your posts. What can you do this year to encourage people to follow you on your social media platforms? Remember, whether they choose to follow you is largely based on what they feel like they are getting out of the arrangement.

Engagement

Engagement is one of the most valuable metrics when it comes to social media marketing. If your audience is not engaging with your content, they are less likely to see any of it in their feed. It’s the basic mechanics of how algorithms work. If one of your goals is to increase engagement on your social media channels this year, we back you 100%!

Hashtags

If you plan to be on Twitter or Instagram, hashtags are a must! However, they can be beneficial on any of the social media platforms, if used the right way. If you don’t understand the value of hashtags or how to make them work for your social media platforms, make it a goal this year to find out more about hashtags and create a strategy to expand your reach using them.

Quality Content

Hands down, the most important goal you can set for yourself when it comes to social media marketing is creating consistent, quality content that your audience actually wants. Achieving this will make all the other goals slide into place. This is a challenge for most business owners because it can be tough to get into the shoes of your audience and create content they actually want. But, it’s certainly not impossible, and is always going to make a larger impact than just posting to maintain your online presence. Make it a goal this year to talk to your target market and find out what content they want to see, track what content they engage in most, and create a content marketing strategy that will truly boost your social media marketing efforts.

These are just some of the goals you can work on this year. Regardless of what you choose, the Social Media Advisor team is here to support you and help you reach those goals.

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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.

Setting Goals with Your Marketing

It’s a new year and that means you have a brand new chance to make an impact with your small business! You’ve gone through another year of trial and error with an even better idea of what does, and doesn’t work, when it comes to marketing your business. Now it’s time to take that information and create a plan for going even bigger this year!

First, let’s start with identifying your marketing goals.

Types of Marketing Goals

What sort of goals should you be aiming for with your marketing this year? The truth is always that this will vary based on loads of factors including type of business, industry, location, audience, and more. However, there are some tried and true recommendations for marketing goals that you can start with.

  • Online vs Offline – What percentage of the time will you dedicate to marketing yourself online? What percentage of time will you market yourself offline, such as events, networking, trade shows, speaking, and business functions?
  • Target Audience – Do you know your target audience and ideal client? If not, it’s time to figure that out. If you do, will that stay the same this year? What goals can you set to connect more with your audience?
  • SEO – What goals can you jot down that will help you be FOUND online?
  • Conversion – If you are at all interested in growing your business online, what conversion tools and goals will you set this year? (This could include websites, landing pages, social ads, or online courses.)
  • Authority – What goals will you set to increase your credibility and authority this year? Will you collect more online reviews and testimonials? Will you create original content? Will you pitch to be a guest on other blogs, podcasts, or videos?
  • Social Media Marketing – Last, but never least, what’s your goals for building your social media presence and audience?

Setting Your Goals with S.M.A.R.T. Way

Too often do I see small business owners setting goals based on what they wished would happen with no thought or data to back up whether or not their goals are even plausible. The S.M.A.R.T goals method ensures that you are selecting goals that are well thought out and built for you to be successful.

Specific – Your goals are not dreams. They need to be specific so you know what you are aiming for and can create a step-by-step for achieving it.

Measurable – If you can’t quantify the goal, how will you know whether or not you achieved it. A goal should be measurable. Once achieved, you should be able to prove that you’ve completed it so you can move on to something bigger and better.

Achievable – Goal setting only works if you are actually able to achieve the goals you have set for yourself. Becoming a million-dollar business is an admirable goal but if you don’t even have clients yet, aiming for something lower that you can build on is a better plan.

Relevant – Does your goal relate to what you are trying to build this year? Can you tie the goal into a specific result you are targeting by year-end. Why is this goal relevant to where your business is at and going this year?

This should give you plenty to think about so that you can create a marketing strategy for 2020 that works for your business.

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.


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