Social Media: Sourcing and creating great Content. By Fiona Catchpowle

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1 Social Media: Sourcing and creating great Content By Fiona Catchpowle

2 There s no doubt about it Social media has changed the way you do business. In order to meet the ever-changing needs of your consumers and clients, creating a solid social media presence is vital. Let s look at some social statistics* The fastest growing demographic on twitter is the year age bracket The year age bracket is the fastest growing demographic on both Facebook and Google million of Facebook users are mobile only 25% of smartphone owners aged say they can t recall the last time their smartphone wasn t next to them Social media has overtaken porn as the no.1 activity on the web *(Originally issued via the Huffington Post, courtesy if istrategy Labs It could be that social media is causing you more stress than success. While there s no fast track to mastering social media, there are ways to become proficient in a shorter amount of time.

3 Firstly you need to know your goals with a Strategy and it needs to be written down. Who are you looking to connect with? What type of content will you share? What are you trying to achieve? Additional exposure, connections with potential clients, more sales? How much time can you commit to managing your social media? What does your success look like? Who are your potential clients? Do you know what they do and what motivates and inspires them? Focus on what your customer wants and be yourself. By doing so you will develop meaningful conversations. Ask yourself everyday whether your message is beneficial and valuable or just contributing to the noise. What platforms will you use? Having identified your target audience it will make it easier for you to establish which channels you are going to use. Where is your audience spending their time and how can you best use that social network to support your goals? Make sure you brand them in the same way for continuity. You want to ensure that no matter where people connect with you, your personal brand is easily identifiable offline as well. Share quality content Getting crystal clear about your target market makes content creation much easier. The goal with your content is to ignite action. Share interesting, relevant and insightful content and share it often. This is the single best way to establish your expertise and credibility. Time management By having a strategy that fits in with your overall business plan and then creating a content calendar your social media time management will be consistent, constructive and effective.

4 Take a look at your last 10 social media posts. Ask yourself: 1) Would I engage with that post if I saw it in my news feed? 2) Did I ask for or encourage action (what?, when? why?)? 3) If there is a photo, would you want to share it if you saw it in your News Feed? 4) Does this post truly add value to my audience? 5) Does this post educate, entertain or empower?

5 Example of a basic calendar e.g. Local plumber Monday Expertise how do you fix a problem tap Tuesday- Educate -Tip about saving water Wednesday Website a DIY article from your blog Thursday Brand awareness a testimonial from a client Friday Loyalty Special offer for fans e.g. restaurant Monday Stock Image Happy Monday Tuesday Own image/video food item with description Wednesday Share another Page post Thursday Note menu description with image Friday Link to own website opening hours/events/blog Vary what you post 1/3 about your brand, 1/3 related content from other sources, 1/3 be you and let people get to know you The in-built scheduling facilities within Facebook and Twitter allow you to organise your content, but don t forget to take part in the conversation and pay attention to what is happening Once you have the main outline of your calendar you can decide on your preferred style of display, depending how adventurous you become with your forwards planning. E.g. Excel spreadsheet, Word

6 document or a Calendar style calendar with colour codes for different types of content. It becomes more important when you start to post several times a day. NB As a result of a recent Facebook Scheduled Post malfunction I now keep a long hand version of my posts in a Word doc for reference Have you succeeded? Based on your original intentions from your strategy, how are you doing? Evaluate your results and rate your performance. What is working and what isn t? What changes can you make to your content that could make things better? Not everything will work. The key is to identify what is and do more of that. Get Clear Define your mission, vision, and goals for your social media strategy. Research Know where your clients spend their time and how they consume content on social media. Plan to Succeed Determine how you will join the conversation and begin forging relationships in a consistent and strategic way. General advice - Be trustworthy; Stay positive; Be professional; Engage; Be Consistent; Share; Reach Out; Reply to comments, mentions, favourites, likes and tag the person Avoid - Buying fans or followers, don t focus on trying to get more LIKES engage with the ones you have first! NB. Your number of fans on Facebook means nothing if you are not attracting QUALITY fans that are genuinely engaged in your content, interested in what you are about and paying attention to what you have to say.

7 Content sourcing Where is all this fabulous content coming from? Some of it will be easier than you realise and some will be thought provoking and lead you to who knows where. 1. Specific product information from your own company information on leaflets and website 2. General product information from other blogs e.g latest widgets to hit the market place, local trends 3. A contest, survey, or Q & A session 4. By scheduling your content in a calendar, preferably with actual dates you can draw on events happening in real time and post about that. e.g. Christmas 5. Themed content the same style of information, such as a quote or top tip 6. Other sources of curated content such as Google Alerts, Feedly, industry related websites, other channels 7. When inspiration strikes, go for it and save the information in chunks and then pace yourself with its distribution 8. Don t wait for it to be perfect, have a go and JUST DO IT!

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