A few weeks ago, we published a post about how brands can use social media to increase their content’s reach. That effect works in reverse as well. Top-quality content can help you increase your company’s social media followers. Here’s how.
It’s All About the Data
Most social media platforms have in-depth analytics programs that can analyze your current social media followers and find commonalities. Compare them to your blog subscribers’ and paid customers’ content analytics data to come up with a portrait of your target customers.
This data will likely include:
- Demographics, such as gender, age, language, education level, income level, and location
- Online behavior, such as clicks, conversions, and the times they’re usually on each social media platform
- Likes, preferences, favorite brands, pain points, and interests
- Companies they work for
Keep these characteristics in mind when you begin content planning. Larger companies, with their broader range of products and locations, will probably be able to create several customer segments with common interests. Many enterprise-level companies create customer personas to put a human face on these groups.
Brainstorm Content That Will Appeal to Each Segment
Next, get your teams together to think about what kind of content will meet your target customers’ needs. If your product is highly technical or subject to rigorous regulatory or compliance requirements, bring your subject matter experts, legal team, or compliance department representatives into the content collaboration process.
Focus first on content that will appeal to people at the top of the sales funnel. Remember that your regular followers will likely share it with their colleagues and friends.
Make it accessible and free of confusing jargon. It should read easily, with a catchy hook that will make first-timers want to click through to your full blog post.
Images help – a lot. Since 65 percent of your audience are likely visual learners, an attractive image on your social media post teaser will make your post appeal to this critical metric.
Infographic source: Daily Infographic
Your regular followers and customers will enjoy seeing posts that appeal to their needs, too. Use your social media’s targeting feature to show links to this content to people who are further along in their customer journey.
Make It Shareable
When your goal is to increase social media followers, it’s even more important to make the part of the post that shows on the social platform so compelling that your followers and first-time readers will share it without even reading it all the way through.
Like it or not, 60 percent of your social media shares will come from people that haven’t read your entire post, as the Washington Post’s Caitlin Dewey points out. Make your headline and intro so irresistible that people will want to share them.
One word of caution, though. Be sure that the body of the post fulfills the promise in the headline.
Resist the temptation to create clickbait that ends up disappointing. Your long-term goal is to build your authority and, most importantly, trust.
Follow Relevant Accounts and Interact
Use your social media platforms’ search function to find and follow accounts related to your industry, as Search Engine Journal’s Mark Traphagen advises. Think partnership. Which companies and individuals would complement your brand’s business?
For example, if your company manufactures printers, paper and ink manufacturers would be good prospects.
Major niche influencers in your company’s space are must-follows. You’re looking to build your reputation as a thought leader.
So, answer questions, ask thought-provoking questions of your own. Discover what problems they face, and then share content that can help them meet their challenges.
Industry-relevant news, trends, and statistics are all sources of valuable content to share. Even better, add your own perspective on these issues. Anyone can share news. Sharing your thoughts – when done right – can position you on the leading edge in your industry.
When you position yourself as a helpful source of information, you’re likely to see some of these influencers following you. And, as a bonus, some of their own followers are bound to notice – and follow your brand as well.
Invite Blog Subscribers to Follow Your Brand
Not everyone who follows your blog posts will also follow your brand on social media. Invite them to follow but make their commitment well worth their while.
Remind them that they’ll be missing out on critical information if they don’t follow you. Then, create unique content that you post first on social media so that your followers are the first to see it.
Be a regular presence in your followers’ news feeds. Don’t annoy them with irrelevant information, but keep up the relationship, no matter how busy your content teams are.
Use Hashtags in Your Teaser
Most social media platforms only allow a specific number of characters to appear on your posts. Your headline, an image, and perhaps a sentence or short paragraph will be all that appears.
Basically, a social post is a teaser – designed to lure them to your owned content. That’s a good thing. However, if you use hashtags, you can attract people outside of your regular followers since many people search by hashtags.
If your posts are good enough, chances are good that they’ll become followers themselves. Beware of overdoing it. There’s nothing more irritating than someone who turns almost their entire post into hashtags. Only use terms that are relevant to your industry and your post.
Align Your Social Strategy with Your Overall Content Strategy
If you’re like most large companies, you have a virtual army of content creators. Make sure that your social teams collaborate frequently with your blog writers so that the content always aligns with your brand’s perspective.
Content leadership personnel should meet regularly with your executive team. That way, if the company takes a different direction, your content strategy will align with your company’s new business goals.
Brand guidelines, including a style guide, are a good way to keep everyone on the same page. Keep the content in these resources current, and make sure they’re available on your content marketing platform for quick reference.
Having a single place where your company handles everything content-related helps to align everything you publish with your brand’s overall goals. DivvyHQ provides you with a home base where you can manage everything from planning to publication to analyzing your results.
Even better, you can try it for 14 days absolutely free without any obligation on your part. Start your DivvyHQ trial today!