Successful marketing is grounded in knowing your audience, knowing what content and ideas you want to convey, and prioritizing how you’ll get the word out based on the delivery channels that best suit your target customer or prospect.
Marketing on social is no different. But it’s unwise to think that all social channels achieve the same goal, and that once you have a piece of content you think is important, you can “fire” to all channels equally. Here is your “ready and aim” considerations for each channel. And how to make sure the call to action leads to where you can build even more value.
There are only “x #” of you to manage your communications plan, so think carefully about which channels are right for your organization. Use social channels to help you create a community of followers to engage with and lead them to a next step. Even if the next step is a better connection with your organization.
1) Facebook is an effective way to develop a personal connection with people you may not see on a regular basis. FB is where the majority of your customer base is today and your best place for engagement with your target audience. Your goal is that your followers will read, react and then ideally engage with you. Facebook supports casual, informational reminders and updates. (Think class or event info, sharing news articles/trends, tagging members in association photos.).
Engage with “customers” by posting regularly with concise copy along with images, by using keywords that support your value proposition, and uploading short, good quality videos (that include compelling content). Don’t expect results on Facebook unless you consistently monitor comments and build engagement with timely responses.
Content: Aim for Quality vs. Quantity
2) LinkedIn is primarily a professional networking website. It helps visitors learn, connect and expand their professional network. They read news and interesting topics that are more formal and “technical”. So your goal is to help people learn about your expertise and what’s happening in your industry. This content creates trust in your brand. (This platform is meant for longer articles on complicated topics – legislative issues, high-level articles from your president, industry trends.)
Connect with your audience through credible, in-depth content that relates to their business and the industry.
Content: Aim for hyper-relevant information around business and industry
3) Twitter’s open nature is its best unique quality. Anyone can join in conversations based on the topic they care about. Your goal on Twitter is to establish your association as the thought leader, to position your brand as a resource for up to date news and information. It’s the place where followers stay up on breaking stories. (Think updates and takeaways from conferences, updates on a bill during a legislative session, any breaking industry news.)
Twitter followers expect ongoing conversation. Keep your audience interested with quick responses. Build your following with RT’s (re-tweets) of other sources of breaking industry news.
Content: Aim for quantity of relevant information
4) Instagram is visual storytelling. First, choose your niche and your target audience; then post in line with it. People who are interested in private property rights won’t be interested in your latest classes. Instagram is the place to brand your organization – so be consistent in your posting style, content, and being known for something that you know your followers are interested in. Compelling Imagery + Engaging Text = a successful Instagram strategy. (Think photos of members, photography highlighting what’s unique about your area, branded graphics + inspiring content.)
Content: Aim for high-quality images. Be consistent with your brand to keep them engaged.
5) Pinterest is not a conversation, so unlearn traditional social rules for this channel. Don’t copy & paste content from FB or ask questions like you do on FB. …Where FB’s goal is engagement, Pinterest is where users discover and save content for future reference. Your goal is to post pictures, graphics and infographics that your members will save and use later.
Create boards based on what your audience will use in their business and content they will share with their clients. For a REALTOR® this may include ideas for listing presentations or infographics on monthly market data. For consumers, home remodeling trends or an infographic on the pay-off of energy efficient home devices.
Content: Aim for high quality images, purposeful key words and links to website
6) YouTube is more than a repository for videos. It’s an active community of users looking for unique content to entertain, connect, and inform. It’s a place to tell your story, build an audience, and establish a personality. Check out other association channels to get an idea of what types of content gets the most attention. (Think technology tutorials, legal lessons, video clips that get members excited for an event.)
Content: Aim for shareable, unique videos, drive traffic to other channels, create custom thumbnails for videos, be an active participant in the YouTube community
You may not use every channel listed here. If you don’t have the resources to implement a social media plan across all of these channels, then choose a few and make a commitment to them. Plan, prepare and post on the platforms that will help you reach your communications goals.
It is better to be exceptional at one or two social channels than average at all of them. Prioritize the platforms with the most potential for you and focus your posting energy on those.
- Sprout Social
- Constant Contact
- Quick Sprout
- Dow Social