Tuesday, 12 November 2019

How to crush content creation on social media in 2019

Sometimes, creating content that resonates with your social media audiences can feel as mystifying as the task confronting Mickey Mouse in “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.”
Needing to complete some chores, Mickey cast a spell meant to make things easier, but it had an unpredictable effect. Any social media manager who’s encounter an unexpected wave of responses or been stumped by changes to a platform’s algorithms – maybe the closest real-world equivalent to magic spells, as powerful as they are inscrutable – can probably relate.
Mastering social media content creation isn’t magic, luckily. However, reaching audiences at scale requires practice and a systematic approach, which can be hard work. Indeed, 60% of content marketers find it challenging to consistently produce engaging material, showing the opportunity for improvement.

Why invest in social media content creation in the first place?

With an effective social media content strategy, you can not only reach a potentially vast audience, but also establish yourself as a credible authority in your field and create a reliable conversion pipeline.
Compelling social content literally pays off:
While we can’t provide a magic spell that will instantly supercharge your social media marketing efforts, we can offer the next best thing: Proven tips on what works when creating content for your social media audiences.
Let’s get started!

1. Focus on visual assets, especially infographics and videos

Videos, photos, and infographics all perform exceptionally well in a world in which Instagram Stories, Twitch livestreams and YouTube explainers have captured a huge share of all online attention.
In fact, “visual images” are the preferred social-centric medium among marketers, ahead of blogs, videos, live streams and podcasts.
This shouldn’t be surprising, as a well-crafted infographic can convey a lot of data in a concise format and leave a lasting impression.

Infographic guidelines

Most people retain only 10% of something they heard after 3 days, compared to 65% retention of images they saw. When you create an infographic for a social media post, keep these guidelines in mind:
Keep the text short
Long, wordy sentences are sometimes good in blog posts, but they take up too much space in infographics, cluttering the design. Use simple sentences with parallel (similar) structure for easy readability and consistent design across social media platforms.
Let the design do the talking
Infographics should be as visual as they are informative. Multiple images adhering to a single theme – for example, racing or cars for a graphic about “driving” engagement – will often grab the viewer’s eye and hold their attention.
Use statistics if relevant
Interesting statistics are memorable, plus they don’t take up much space. So if you come across a gem like the fact that 79% of people scan online content rather than read it word-by-word, see if you can work it in.
Pick a narrow topic and concise design
The best infographics are concise and easy to view. As such, they usually focus on just a single topic. Don’t try to make it another blog post or, worse, a mini white paper that tries to cover far too much in far too little space.
Cite everything
Infographic statistics and mini-sized facts can seem like they came out of nowhere, which reduces the credibility of the asset when someone tries to verify them. Include a list of URLs and other sources at the end of the infographic to show your work.

Video guidelines

For videos, the same general advice about brevity applies, along with a few more pointers specific to the format:
Use subtitles
Closed captions began as an accessibility feature, but they benefit everyone. For starters, they’re one of the best ways to increase viewer focus and a preference of Gen Z viewers in particular. Brands such as Dunkin’ have also made creative use of subtitles to call attention to marketing messages that might otherwise get lost in the din of a busy social media feed.
Think about animation
Animation is a great way to give a video a distinctive aesthetic and expand the range of what it can portray. This DocuSign explainer video makes the most of its animation to show its subject performing a bunch of different tasks in various contexts, before pivoting to a depiction of her going “all digital” as papers fly across the room.
Incorporate CTAs
You should always have an answer for viewers wondering what to do next. An effective CTA will direct them without seeming too salesy. Dropbox incorporated a pitch-perfect CTA – “Keep teams flowing” – at the end of this action-packed 30-second video which also calls out the “flow” verbiage earlier on to set up the conclusion.

2. Tailor your content to each platform

Every social media channel has its own distinctive character. Accordingly, it’s essential to fine-tune your content for each one. That process starts with analyzing details from tools like Instagram Insights and Facebook Audience Insights, which offer details on audience location, age, gender, and more.
Knowing these details makes it easier to dial-in your messaging, create buyer personas, and take advantage of the features of the platforms you’re using, whether that’s a live video on Instagram, a curated collection on Pinterest, or text post on LinkedIn. Here’s a primer on what to keep in mind for some of the most popular social channels.


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