A recent survey of consumers in the United States found that 91% of consumers are more likely to buy from an authentic brand - A brand that is ‘real’, ‘genuine’ and ‘trustworthy.’
So, with this in mind, how do you go about building an authentic brand on social media? How do you build a brand that people trust?
Well, to do so you require an effective and appropriate 'Social Media Publishing Strategy'. That might sound simple and straightforward; however, there’s more to social media publishing than just posting content on Facebook and responding to your prospects on Twitter.
Successful social media marketing happens when you consistently publish useful, relevant and shareable content, and support that content by engaging with your prospects.
After all, you don't reach the level of Netflix's authenticity and engagement entirely by accident.
That’s why I’ve broken the bite-sized tips any brand can follow to get their social media game strong. Here are 10 tips to effective social publishing that will help you build an authentic brand.
Update: This week in our webinar, we have you covered everything that is required to build an authentic brand on social media. We discussed how you could 'Scale your Social Media Publishing efforts using Statusbrew' in order to be authentic, natural and at the same time be firm in your storytelling. If in case you missed our webinar, don’t worry! You can now access the full webinar recording here.
Let's dive in!
1. Set SMART goals from day one
If you are trying to set up your business for success on social media, it is crucial for you to know - Why are you on social in the first place?
Few answers to this can be:
- Driving traffic to your website
- Generating sales and leads
- Increasing brand awareness
- Imparting knowledge to the audience
It doesn't have to take weeks to find an answer to this question. We'd suggest you to make use of the S.M.A.R.T goal framework - goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound.
For example: If you want to set a goal to increase your Brand Awareness, here's what that might look like with S.M.A.R.T framework.
- Specific: “Increase Twitter followers by 25%” and “Achieve a minimum of 3 shares for each social post” half yearly
- Measurable: “The no. of shares can be measured from the Statusbrew dashboard”
- Achievable: “Yes, it is certainly achievable”
- Relevant: “Our goal will have an impact on our overall brand awareness. That makes it relevant”
- Time-bound: “The goal has to be met by the end of half year”
Assigning your social media efforts a definite purpose could save you from posting aimlessly on social media. And could boost your team productivity during social media publishing.
2. Identify your target audience for effective social media publishing
Once you've outlined your goals, the next thing that you need to do is - "Identify your Audience".
Remember, not everyone is your audience.
You will have to break down your audience. Although it’s not an easy task, doing this will help you get answers to the following:
- Which social media platforms would benefit your business?
- What are the best times to post the content?
- What type of content your audience wants to see?
All that you need to do to identify your audience is ask yourself the right set of questions:
- What is the demographics of your audience persona?
- Which industry are they involved in?
- What is their job role or title?
- What are their biggest challenges?
- How does success look like for them?
- What brands they already love on social?
- How do they search for vendors or sellers online?
- How do they prefer to interact with online products?
This sort of competitive analysis could help you understand where you need to put your social media publishing efforts to scale your social media presence.
3. Identify best social media publishing platforms
There exist a large number of different social media platforms that you can join to promote your business. But the best social media publishing platforms for you will be the ones that have your target audience and that works the best for your type of business.
Are you in a visually driven industry like fashion, photography or food? Or do you have a product that would do well with visual marketing? Hop on Instagram, Pinterest or Snapchat.
Are you in the B2B industry and want to create content and drive traffic to your websites? Go Twitter or facebook.
Once you understand what the playing field of various social channels looks like, you can choose which specific networks you would like to focus your attention on when posting content.
With this in mind, I've mentioned a few guidelines for the type of content to be posted on most popular social networks:
Facebook: Facebook is a great platform to create awareness, generate excitement for social media campaigns, and keep the conversation going with your prospects. (Content-Type: Curated content and Videos)
Instagram: Instagram is a visually driven social media publishing platform. Merely posting low-quality pictures or Stories on Instagram could not help you generate engagement and followers. (Content-Type: High-res photos, quotes, and Stories)
Twitter: Twitter is an open platform. In its case, people are indulging more into sharing breaking news and posting updates about their company. (Content-Type: Blog posts, News, and GIFs)
Linkedin: Linkedin is a professional network that people usually use to seek potential customers, employees and also build your brand's industry expertise. (Content-Type: Professional content, news related to companies, and jobs)
4. Find the streams of curated content
Once you've fixed the base of social media publishing, i.e., you've set your goals, identified your audience and selected the right social media platform for your business, the next thing that comes is curating the content for your social media publishing.
Posting content on social media doesn't necessarily mean that you have to create new content - indeed one more time-consuming process. I’d instead recommend you to find different non-competing influencers and brands that share content that you think your audience would love. For example, existing blog posts, ebooks, white papers, infographics, checklists, etc.
An excellent way to source such third-party content is using social media management tools like Statusbrew that provides you with content suggestions and help you have a never-ending supply of quality content that you could share with your Audience.
Let's have a look at 2 content sharing rules that have been tried and tested by brands and Social Media Marketers. These rules could probably help you stay more effective at social media publishing.
5-3-2 Content Sharing Ratio
Structured and experimented by TA McCann from Gist.com, the 5-3-2 rule looks like this in practice:
- 5 - content from others
- 3 - content from you
- 2 - personal status updates
30/60/10 Content Sharing Ratio
content sharing ratio was introduced by Rallyverse. Let’s break it down:
- 30% - owned content
- 60% - curated content
- 10% - promotional content
Practicing these Social Media content sharing ratios can ease your work in understanding the type of content you should share and could save time and effort. You can alter this according to your preference while you discover what works the best for your audience and business.
5. Stick to your content calendar
If there’s something common among the brands on social, it’s that they post on a consistent basis.
Remember, publishing the appropriate content is only the start to effective social media publishing. It's also essential that you post content in the right places, at the right times. Otherwise, the chances are that your target audience might miss it.
Don't panic. That’s where content calendar comes in as a catalyst. Not only does a publishing calendar minimize stress, but it also encourages focus to achieve your goals by creatively developing and posting consistently diverse content throughout all social media platforms.
Above all else, using an editorial calendar could also:
- Enable you to adjust all your posts for every social media platform without having to jump between sites
- Allow you to timely schedule social media posts for maximum engagement. (Schedule in advance)
Also, it saves you from having to always post in real-time
- Make the media assets (text, images) readily available for posting, making the task of publishing straightforward
In short, taking the time to make a schedule could help you in three ways. One, it keeps your social media presence organized. Second, it maximizes your contents’ reach. And third, social media scheduling in bulk could help you know the best time to post.
6. What is the best time to post on social media?
Your social media publishing efforts are no way going to help you if you don't know what time works the best for your social media posts.
Suppose, sitting in India you are posting your content according to Indian time-zone! But, what if a significant portion of your audience is from the USA?
Your social media audience prefers being active during specific hours. So if you begin sharing your content when your audience is present on these networks, you'll notice more engagement on your social media posts.
To start with, you can experiment posting your social media posts according to the following times:
- Best posting time on Twitter: 12:00 - 3:00pm; Worst time to post on Twitter: 8:00pm – 9:00am
- Best psoting time on Facebook: 1:00 - 4:00pm; Worst time to post on Facebook: 8:00pm – 8:00am
- Best posting time on LinkedIn: 9:00am - 6:00pm; Worst time to post on LinkedIn: 6:00 pm – 9:00am
Once you start noticing some improvement in your social media activity, you can consider doing some further testing to narrow down those places and times to best suit your industry and audience.
Test the similar post in different time slots for a couple of days. This will help you accumulate knowledge about your audience behavior. Perform this practice for a few weeks to fix your sweet spot for gathering a good response and maximize traffic.
7. Analyze and monitor your social media publishing efforts constantly
After publishing your content on social media how do you validate your publishing efforts? How do you measure the performance of your content?
We understand how stressful and time consuming it could be to do all this. But, utilizing social media management tools for the same could help you avoid such a situation.
These tools could help you to:
- Know what type of content users are engaging with
- Watch your pages for opportunities of engagement
- Answer the questions that your users have as soon as possible
- Thank users for their reviews, and engage with comments and responses more often
Doing this is essential for community and relationship building, which is what social media marketing is all about.
This data backed with proper analytics help you treat social media less like a guessing game and more like a science.
Additional tips to master social media publishing
8. Get your teams involved into post approvals
For large scale agencies and businesses, message approval is essential. With a proper approval workflow, the content marketers could ensure that their posts are curated, edited and published on time. Or otherwise, managing a huge number of social media profiles becomes complicated.
Statusbrew for teams allows you to increase team efficiency through user-based permissions. That means you only have to review and approve/reject the content before it’s published.
However, using teams feature can prevent errors as it introduces a workflow that is authentic. Make sure your business has a proper workflow when submitting, approving and publishing content on Social Media.
To make this concept of approvals easier, we've introduced slack integrations for our business users! When you connect your Statusbrew with one or more Slack channels or workplaces, you will receive instant Slack notifications for all the activities you choose are necessary for your Business.
With Statusbrew's slack integration you can:
- Get social conversations for your brand right in your channel
- Notify your team about essential leads
- Make your approval workflows a breeze
- Inform your team instantly
Imagine how much time you could save by using social media management tools in doing all the above-listed tasks!
9. Shorten the URLs
When publishing your content on social media, do not forget to make use of the link shorteners - A great way to convert big and ugly looking links into something more space-saving and manageable!
The branded shorten URLs could help you gain much more than brand impressions and visibility – they can drive up to a 34% increase in CTR. What more?
Here are two more benefits that shortened links comes bundled with:
- People will in a flash perceive that the link they will tap on comes from your brand. A few examples of shortened branded links are Amazon’s amzn.to and Statusbrew’s sb.gl
- You can analyze the performance of your links. You can track the views and click rates and furthermore get in-detail examination about who clicked and whether the visitors are from your target audience
10. Utilize social media publishing tools to work the smart way
Anyone who has been involved in social media publishing even for a while knows how time-consuming process it could be. Doing all the above-listed tasks manually could take much of your day and night.
This is where the role of social media publishing tools come!
With social media publishing software, it becomes easier for you to hit your publishing goals by strategically placing your content in the future, i.e. you can schedule content for future in advance. They not only help you to publish content but at the same time allow you to analyze/monitor your efforts and manage all your social audience. Indeed, a smart way!
If you are not using any such tool, I'd suggest you to give a try to an effective social media publishing tool at least once. They are going to make your life way easier.
In today's world consumers are exposed to more information than ever. Thanks to social media! While this information makes them better-informed, it additionally impacts their purchasing decisions. As a result, it becomes essential for the businesses to:
- Create good content that speaks to their target audience
- Make that content easily accessible, shareable, and measurable to promote maximum impact
In short, your business needs to have proper social media publishing strategy. We hope you find the above list of tips and tricks to be useful. Also, if you have any additional ideas then please feel free to share them with us in the comments below. We are eager to know from you.