Content marketing is slowly taking over Search Engine Optimization. The takeover has changed the definition of high-quality content.
High-quality content is no longer defined in terms of the “wow” feeling that it generates. High-quality content is content that lives up to its purpose, which is authority marketing and visitor conversion.
Enter Social Media
Not incorporating the right social media strategies into content marketing is a big fail. And it’s the reason seemingly high-quality content sometimes fails to strike a chord with readers. The newest influential marketing trends include egocasting, which is working successfully for the selfie generation. People belonging to this generation are found on social media 24/7.
It’s up to content marketers to find ways to assimilate social media into their content marketing strategy. To be one step ahead in creating conversion-worthy content that displays it’s expertise because of the superb writing.
Here are 7 tips for Content Marketers:
Tip 1: Share Other People’s Content
A typical content marketer balks at sharing other’s content on social media. The reason behind this flawed notion is the deeply ingrained thought that they’ll be promoting the other marketer if they share the marketers content.
Realize that users on social media don’t discriminate. They read any content as long as it’s exciting and adds something new. If someone shares an article’s link and if the content is informative and crisp, users will be receptive and won’t give two hoots about whether it was created by the person sharing it.
By sharing content from multiple sources, a content marketer can portray himself as a credible source of thought-provoking info. Understanding users on social media can be tricky, but one thing can be said about them, they assume anyone who shares high-quality content has access to a wide array of information.
Tip 2: Bonding with Audiences
Natural disasters or political turmoil destroy people’s lives and homes. We see this news trending on social media. Brands can be a part of the collective empathy to establish a connection with the audiences.
See the image below:
After the devastating earthquake that shook Ecuador on April 16, 2016, social media was abuzz with prayers, solidarity with the victims and of course, requests for donations. You can see in the graphic above requests for international donations from the Ecuador & Galápagos Twitter page.
This is an example of how brands can don a humanitarian avatar and form a bond with audiences. On social media, people are open and honest about their true feelings. Brands see this as an opportunity to connect with them on an emotional level. With the help of interesting content, especially in multimedia format, brands can entice audiences and draw their emotions.
Outbound marketers often fret about the cost of creating audio-visual content. They might not have the money to hire a product photographer or professional models, but there’s no shortage of YouTube tutorial videos or animation tools. Tools like Blabberize, GoAnimate, and DoInk, can be used by anyone.
Blabberize is a unique tool. It can make an uploaded picture talk. Instant animation.
DoInk is unique as it allows collaboration. It’s an iOS app and was designed keeping amateurs in mind.
GoAnimate has a drag-and-drop interface, a number of customizable templates and plenty of pre-animated characters to choose from. Those characters can display emotions, helping to create the emotional bond with audiences.
Tip 3: A/B Testing
Aka split testing, it can give content marketers a clear idea of what content brings traffic from social media. If one set of content (Set A) isn’t pulling traffic, then replace it with the other set (Set B).
Social media can function as a feedback loop, helping content marketers recognize the true merit of the content they create. The reaction their content receives from social media users gives them an idea of its acceptability.
A/B testing requires 2 sets of entirely different content with different text. On social media, users can only see the content snippet, so only the headlines and the description need to be different. If users see the thumbnail size image preview, then two sets of images may also be needed.
Tip 4: Hashtag Optimization
Using hashtags is quickly becoming the defacto optimization style across social channels. Even though Twitter is their birthplace, hashtags are no longer restricted to any particular network.
Hashtag optimization is leverage for content marketers. The optimization best practices include:
- Hashtagging Powerful Phrases: Try hashtagging impactful phrases. This will give your content outstanding visibility. Hashtagging stale and mundane phrases does the opposite.
- Using Hashtag Analytics: Analytics tools examine hashtag data and give you details related to audience’s demographic characteristics, gender distribution, and sentiment, so you use more relevant hashtags next time.
- Hashtag Action Statement: Hashtags have been used in online activism. Content marketers can hashtag phrases that motivate social media users to carry out actions to strengthen their connection with the brand.
While following these techniques ensures content optimization, it’s your responsibility as a content marketer to establish a semantic resemblance between the hashtagged phrases and the content.
Tip 5: User-Generated Content
User generated content importance is on the rise. Dubbed as micro-content, it’s receiving 28% more engagement. User-generated content (UGC) connects one user to another, which can make a negative impact on purchasing decisions made by customers. This is why brands are skeptical about it.
But I feel brands can benefit from UGC. By pointing out product shortcomings which can be fixed users will have an improved product experience next time. Being able to change the perception towards a product can give them more UGC in future with a positive undercurrent making their marketing efforts easier.
UGC is found across social networks, some are not mainstream social but sites like online reviews, but still qualify as social.
Tip 6: Sharing Strategy
Brands whine that content written by them, despite being high-quality, doesn’t get shared much. The reason could be faulty sharing strategies. Everyone wants a high number of shares but very few follow the correct strategies.
Successful sharing largely depends on the following factors:
- Frequent sharing
- Sharing time
Here’s an optimal sharing time chart. See the image below:
Start by sharing a post on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter. Then wait for 2 hours and share it on Twitter again. This strategy is endorsed by Rand Fishkin. Share the post again on Twitter the next day, a week after and then in 2 months. Repost it on Facebook again next month. On Tumblr, you have to repost it twice.
As for the sharing time, check when your audiences are most active and their time zones. Decide the ideal time to share based on that info.
Tip 7: Customization is Optimization
Social media blurs geographical boundaries, which has an upside and downside. On the downside, a campaign may be skewed to a user-segment who won’t buy from you. No matter how attention-grabbing your post is, if they’re not your target audiences, it will be ineffective in converting.
Content marketers can’t restrict their reach on social media, especially if it’s an organic campaign. High-quality content should be able to be read by anyone. The best strategy is to customize content based on demographic info. Content with a promotional undertone is viewed by people belonging to the target geographic region and income group.
This kind of strategic customization optimizes the content for niche audiences and the campaign is targeted.
It’s High Time
It’s now or never. Any delay in blending the right amount of social media with the right amount of content marketing can reduce your chances which may be superb at present. Spice up your content marketing techniques by using multimedia tools and following the social media advice shared here.