What were the four sites that your spent more than 5 minutes on, in the last 1 hour?
One of the sites out of these 4 will most likely be a social media site – Instagram, Twitter, Facebook or, maybe even Ello!
Attention span of an average internet user is decreasing and so is his time on site. But one place that he would spend an average of about 5 minutes or, more in a single visit is a Social Media site. Why?
It is because of the engagement that Social Media sites have. You find interesting content that grabs your attention and would like to engage with it by sharing, commenting or, even liking and favoriting it. It is because of this, that Social Media has become an essential part of your marketing efforts.
A huge follower base on social media, in turn means better engagement on your website as well. Because your followers are people who decided to follow you because you were providing valuable, engagement worthy content. This essentially categorizes your websites as a valuable and engagement worthy resource and is just the ideal place for your followers to be on.
This is the exact concept that Reverse Blogging uses. And it works really well.
But, how do you build this loyal social media following?
Keep in mind that social media is changing. The user base is slowly becoming more aware and stricter with the way they interact with content. Social Media sites are also changing. It is no more a platform to spam by pasting all of your and your dog’s pictures and links. And all this means that you need a more robust and well planned strategy to stand out in the social media crowd.
The below 10 tips are things that the Pros do and these are proven to work. So what better way than to implement these in your social media plans, to build your follower base just as the pros did.
10 Social Media Tips for 2015 and onwards
Why 2015 and onwards?
What worked in 2014 is no more working. Facebook changed their algorithms. Twitter introduced the pinned tweet to sharing images. Pinterest has changed things from the way your search to the kind of pins you can add. And all this means that you change your strategy to fit the changing social media world.
The below 10 social media tips are solid tips that will helps you build a strong following. These will work no matter what changes social media sites go through.
Social Media During Optimal Times
Bear in mind that social media is not about posting whenever your wish. It is about being in front of your audience when they are online. If you seriously want some engagement then it is hence important that you know when your audience is the most engaged and then push forward your best content during these times.
Wondering how you will do this?
Follower Wonk is a service that can give you this information about your Twitter audience. Similarly Facebook insights gives you all this and more about Facebook. While a similar information for other social media platforms is limited, you can get some handy information if you keep a track of when your audience is sharing and liking your content and get a rough estimate of the time they are most engaged.
Use Images in your Posts
Images have something in it that no other form of content has. Messages that are conveyed through an image post were found to get much more clicks than the same messages that were conveyed only through text. No wonder that in Twitter, tweets with images showed a 150% more interaction than a normal tweet.
The situation is the same with all other social media channels. Some social media sites like Pinterest and Instagram thrive on image posts.
That’s enough reason for you to include images in your social media posts. Isn’t it?
Include images in your posts on whatever social media site you are on. Statistics prove that they do well and they can help you improve the engagement on your posts.
There are a lot of simple online tools like Shareasimage, Canva, Picmonkey etc. which can help you create simple images. You can use good quotes and embed them on beautiful and meaningful background images, which you can then share on your social media profiles.
Don’t be afraid of sharing the same post multiple times
Share your best content as much as possible. Don’t be afraid of doing it again and again. Social media is over-crowded these days and 90 of all that is shared is junk. Imagine the kind of attention your posts would get amongst the hundreds of thousands of tweets and posts. In order to get any attention your post has to appear multiple times on people’s timelines. And for that to happen you need to share it multiple times.
Tools like Buffer, SocialPilot and eClincher give you options to schedule a repeat of the same posts. Use it to share your best content. Identify the best times to post and schedule the posts during these times.
Try variations – A/B tests always work
A few days back, I ran a giveaway – a FREE Evernote Premium subscription for a year. I used Twitter, the most to promote it. A series of scheduled posts using Buffer. I tried different variations to the Tweet and it was only after about 3 days of trying a variety of Tweets, that I could find the one that got the most engagement. The rest was simple. I scheduled this specific post to be sent out as a repeat for the next 10 days.
Try variations. Pick your best posts or, tweets and add a twist to it. Send them out and track their performance. Compare it with the original. See which one did better. Tweak it again. Use the one that is getter better engagement.
By doing this not only will you be able to garner attention and engagement for your posts, but you will also be able to create high converting templates for your tweets and posts, which you can then use.
Not all social Media is equal
Don’t treat your audience on all the social media sites as equal. People on LinkedIn are different from people on Facebook. Similarly people on Pinterest are different from people on Twitter.
There is a purpose to every one of these sites. Why would I be on Pinterest if information in the form of short digestable text is what I am looking for. I would rather prefer Twitter for that.
Hence it is important that you frame your content for the specific audience. This will get you and your shares a lot of attention and will help you stand out from the rest.
Share your BEST everywhere
One mistake that I did in my early days on social media was to ignore the analytics part. I seldom looked at my stats or, did anything with the analytics. And one impact of that was that I never knew what was my best share.
Find your best shares and share it on all social media sites. If one of your tweets did well, why not make a small infographic out of it and share it on Pinterest. Then create a short post with a call to action and share it on Google Plus. Put together an engaging image and share it on Facebook.
The fact that this piece of content did well on one of the social media sites is a proof that it will do well on the others as well. You just need to customize it for each of the other sites.
Don’t forget to Add Value
In all of the sharing of your blog posts and content from your website, don’t forget the fact that social media is to add value. And if you don’t add value and be overly promotional with your content, you will soon get the wrath of your followers who will start to ignore you.
The easiest way to do this is with Buffer. I read a lot of blogs and I browse a lot. Whenever I find good and informative content, I just use the Bufferapp bookmarklet to add these to my sharing queue. This way I don’t have to spend a lot of time trying to find content that I want to share.
And, if your question is – how do I find all of this content to read, then it is using Feedly. Feedly is one of the best aggregators out there and keeping track of the latest and the best on the internet is fun with Feedly.
The first thing that we were taught at school was to maintain schedules. Everyday had a schedule of what was to be taught. It was for a reason. We knew what to expect and we were prepared for it. We went into the class with a programmed mindset which was ready to accept what came because we knew what is to come.
It is the same with social media. If you maintain a schedule for your posts, your followers will know when to expect what. And if your content is worthy enough, then they will wait for it to come.
You can use tools like Follower Wonk to find the best times to post and add these times to your Buffer schedules. This way your posting schedules will be fixed.
Keep your Profiles Fresh
I used to see people constantly changing their Social Media profile pictures and wonder as to why they did it. It was sheer accidentally that I happened to change my profile picture once. The day I did it, the overall interaction and engagement on my profile increased multiple times.
That’s right. Adding a slice of freshness to your profiles will help you get back some of the lost engagement. People like seeing something new. And your new profiles give them a reason to comment.
One of the most abused things on Social Media is hashtags. Most of us don’t use it and the ones who use it abuse it like anything. Hashtags are a nice way of tracking and following conversations. It serves as a keyword to every post that you publish on a social media site. Then, why not use it?
Use relevant hashtags on every post that you publish on a social media site. But that doesn’t mean that you stuff hashtags into your posts. Use about 2-3 meaningful and relevant hashtags. Embed that into your post without disturbing the flow of information.
Write longer posts
This is a trick I learnt from Copyblogger. Copyblogger stopped comments on their blog and started using their Google plus profile for all the interaction. And in between all the usual interaction which was a follow-through of their blog posts, I saw them publishing informative posts directly onto their Google Plus profile. And these posts generated even more engagement and interaction.
Write longer posts directly on your social media profiles. Doing this in between can help you generate a lot of engagement. People would love to comment and interact on these posts and also share it because of its sheer value.
Add a Call to Action
A lot of good posts on social media sites just ends there. People read them and browse away to the next post. Do you know why?
This is because they don’t ask the visitors to take an action. They just leave them mid-way. A missing “Call-to-action” is the primary reason for 90% of lost visitors.
Use a strong call to action at the end of each post, even if that is about asking people to share the post. Directing the traffic to a landing page, clicking to read more, getting people to signup to receive additional information etc. are just some of these. But whatever is your objective, include a strong call to action. Else you are building engagement but are still unable to make good of this engagement that you started.
Be there and Post
So this is the last tip. The 10.5th tip. If you are wondering why I put it at the 10.5th, it is because it is not something that I can fully call a tip. In fact it is not a tip at all.
I have seen a lot of people starting off well with social media but then lose steam in between and quit. Every 15 days, I unfollow more than 400 Tweeples just because they have just stopped coming over to Twitter.
It is important that you be on your social media profiles and post. Spend some time everyday. Don’t let it stagnate. You might just be on the verge of posting your biggest content. Don’t quit. Be there and keep posting.
If you follow each of the above tips, you are sure to do well with your social media marketing. Follow them judiciously and everytime. You will not be disappointed.
[social_quote duplicate=”yes” align=”default”]More importantly, follow them 100%. For 99.9% is not success. Success is always 100%.[/social_quote]
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