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4 Questions to Ask Before Your Next Social Media Post

4 Questions to Ask Before Your Next Social Media Post Blog Feature

January 23rd, 2014 min read

Screen_Shot_2014-01-22_at_2.34.21_PMDoes your business have what it takes to jump off the page?

With just a few seconds to capture the attention of your audience, many businesses are finding that they are falling victim to the stopless scroll.

The stopless scroll is a social media epidemic, and it's spreading like wildfire. 

I'll be the first to admit that there are days where my social media newsfeed feels and looks like a jungle. With my mouse in hand like a machete, I begin hacking away at the content, scrolling past tweets left and right until something of value presents itself in my path. 

If your business is looking for a way to create content that is worthy of a scroll stop, we've detailed 4 questions to ask yourself before you post anything else on social media. 

Are We Listening?

While customer satisfaction surveys may seem like a logical way to obtain valuable feedback, respondents often fabricate answers that they think the company will want to hear. 

What's unique about social media feedback is that it is unsolicited. Your audience is voluntarily providing you with honest assertions that should not be taken lightly.

Whether they are sharing their suggestions, their complaints, or their contentment, you're eyes and ears should be open to any and all insights into how to advance your social media strategy. Their authentic evaluations will not only help you to uncover your product or service's strengths and weakness, but also highlight areas of your customer experience that need work. 

Ultimately, by monitoring your customer's two cents on social media you are able to uncover a more profound market intelligence that can be used to inform your future social media engagements

Leverage the data that is being awarded to you. Monitor first, post later. 

Is This Shareable?

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One of the best ways to determine if your content is shareable is to take a minute to scroll down your own newsfeed and observe what is being shared.

From my own personal experience, I have come to find that my Facebook newsfeed is littered with BuzzFeed articles. Often times I don't even need to visit the website to check out their new posts because my Facebook friends are so hard at work filling my feed with the latest. 

So what's the deal? Is BuzzFeed handing out freebies to readers who promote their content or what? Not at all. 

What BuzzFeed has done right is they have recognized the importance of shareable content, and used this creed to construct headlines and titles that people actually want to click. Their articles make us laugh, they take a stand, and they appeal to our emotions. They make us want to say "Hey man, check out this article I just read."

If your engagement levels are down, here are a few tips to pump them up:

  • Use buzzwords: tweets containing words like: free, please, top, how to, retweet, help, and check it out are most likely to be retweeted. Additionally, a shareable Facebook post often contains words like: inspires, warns, advises, amazes, gives, amuses, and unites. (Source: Socially Stacked)
  • Take advantage of visuals: Posts containing images are statistically around forty percent more likely to get shared. (Source: Branding by Insight)
  • Keep it short: Posts containing no more than around three lines of text are usually ideal, and they are statistically around 60% more likely to be shared. (Source: Branding by Insight)

Are We Up To Date? 

Keeping pace with social media updates is like a full time job. If your business isn't up to speed with what's going on in the now it's easy to fall behind and miss out on opportunities to improve your engagement rates.

In order to stay on top of our game, we frequent websites like TechCrunch and Mashable to seek out and scoop up social media news as it surfaces.

The fact of that matter is, social media updates primarily improve the functionality of the platform, and provide businesses with new opportunities to share and connect. If your business isn't up to date with platform changes, you may find that you aren't able to unlock the platforms full potential.

For example, the Facebook Graph Search update was a major game changer for Internet marketers in 2013. The update introduced the option to find specific terms used in posts, comments, status updates, groups, pages, and check-ins from public. Marketers who weren't aware of the update were left to fend for themselves, while their competitors were taking advantage of the new feature by researching content topics, and working on their rank.

The same can be said for Twitter's image update, which welcomed images directly into the feed. Early-adopters were quick to start accompanying their posts with more engaging visuals, while the uninformed crowd was still blindly posting Instagram links that could no longer be indexed by Twitter. 

Before you post anything on social media, make sure that you are fully aware of the best practices for that platform, as well as any new updates that may have changed the way you should present your content.

How Can We Expand The Reach?

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No matter how large your business' social media reach is within itself, consider the benefits of having your post broadcast from multiple sources.

One way to expand the reach of your social media posts is to leverage your employee’s social media accounts. Recently we posted a tweet to our company Twitter and Facebook to spread the word that we are looking to recruit talented developers and designers as our team continues to grow. 

While we could have just left it at that, we chose to make use of our 30+ personal Twitter accounts and Facebook pages to extend the news to all of our individual networks. 

Don't have a ton of employees? No problem. You can advance your social media posts by reaching out to industry influencers and thought leaders

Take the time to scan their profiles and gather some information about who their audience is and how they serve them. If you can align your social media content with their audience’s interests as well as yours, there's a chance that they will be willing to pass your content along.

After all, we're all hungry for new information. The more value you can pack into your content, the better chance your posts will have at being picked up and shared by the big dogs. 

 

 

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