Social Media

How to Plan Social Media Content

Social media is one of the most cost-effective, easy to use, and impactful tools that every business has access to. Social platforms provide a channel of direct engagement between brands and their audiences, facilitating a consistent and interactive form of digital marketing. If used effectively, a strong social media presence has the potential to broaden your reach, increase brand following, and reveal new marketing possibilities.

Of course, there are some social media fundamentals that all brands should adhere to. Ensuring your profile on social media platforms is fully optimized, appears official, and is complete with brand information gives your brand the credibility it needs to be successful among users. But what’s equally important, especially for brands focused on driving online content (bloggers, artists, etc.), is how it gets shared on social media.

Content sharing on social media requires some strategy. You’ll need to know who’s in your network, who you want in your network, and how to use social media to position your content in an appealing way. But the good news is that developing your social media content sharing strategy now can save you a lot of time later. Ultimately, having a social media sharing strategy in place will support your content marketing initiatives freeing up the time spent blindly taking stabs at sharing content across social platforms. Here are some ways you can get started on developing and planning social media content sharing.

  1. Use Content Software and Tools

Social sharing is something that, to some extent, can be automated. But think of it less like automation and more like pre-planning. Tools like Hootsuite, for example, allow you to pre plan, message, and schedule your social sharing beforehand. By using such a tool, you can hash out your social sharing as you complete the content you’re working on, while also re-sharing old content. Many editorial calendars, such as CoSchedule, offer a social scheduling feature with your tool, so you can have all your work in one place.

  1. Create Templates

Much like the aforementioned tools, creating social sharing templates can save you a lot of time and help streamline your sharing process. Staggering social media messages across different platforms has shown to have a positive impact on content, creating more opportunities for reaching your audiences. Here’s an example of a template:

You can tweak templates like this to best suit your audience and facilitate as much as engagement from every content piece as possible.

  1. Make a Messaging Guide

You know what works best with your audience, but research knows what works best across different platforms. Bringing these two pieces of knowledge together can result in a more successful sharing strategy that draws both interest and engagement from users. When you’re customizing all of the social messages you plan to share, it’s easy to get sloppy with wording. That’s why having a short list of different message styles can be so helpful. Try putting a list together of the different ways to say something. On it, be sure to include:

  • Asking a question that users want to know the answer to. Create intrigue.
  • Share an interesting quote or fact from the content piece.
  • Be straightforward and tell readers exactly what the content contains and why they want to look at it.
  • Use an attention-grabbing visual.
  1. Find Ways to Tailor Posts to Specific Platforms

Each platform is different, so you can expect your content sharing and messaging to perform differently across all of your social channels. Tailoring your messages to what research shows performs best on each platform is a surefire way to set your content up for success. Here’s what some of that research shows:

Make sure you’re modifying your messages to each platform to ensure your posts get attention from users.

  1. Look at What Your Competitors Are Doing

This is not to be confused with a copycat strategy, but rather seeing how much you need to post in order to compete with similar brands. Think of it like a competitor analysis, but for your social media sharing strategy. It helps to know what your competitors are doing, especially if they’re seeing a lot of success with their social media strategy. Look for things like frequency of posts, messaging style, tone, promotional posts, and other indicators of social sharing strategy. It can show you what you need to be competing against and reveal new ways to reach your audience.

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