Does your conversation with your social media audience feel like this. Ask yourself, does your social audience feel like you just felt watching this video? By this I mean, you can definitely identify a conversation is taking place, but you can’t seem to get anything out of it. One of the biggest frustrations for social media managers is to spend a lot of time and effort producing content that has low engagement. However there’s two reasons for this: Content Matching and Social Buy In (post on buy in coming soon).
It is important that after researching on which networks to use that you match your content to the right place. This is an essential thing to do because of what is known as the mindset divide. This is how people determine the networks they use and gravitate to. So people typically use social networks for two major reasons: to invest or spend time. On some networks like LinkedIn people are more interested in investing their time in learning and working. Whereas people on Facebook are there to play and spend time checking out cool stuff. Each network user therefore has different expectations of what content is suitable. So we should use this knowledge to target the right content to the right people and networks.
Ideally you must match your positioning to message context by tailoring your content to the personality of the network. On Facebook for example, we should focus more on the interest of our audiences and not try to be as brand focused. On LinkedIn you must present yourselves more professionally and really dress your content in a suit and tie. Each network has it’s own personality and therefore dictates what works and doesn’t work on it. Here’s a quick breakdown of the big four:
Twitter “the buzz generator”
- More informal
- Great for sharing content that reaches a lot of people
- Needs less rapport to establish connection
- Not great for long form content
- Great for curation
- Needs a lot of attention to remain relevant
Facebook “the humaniser”
- Users have an exception of friendship
- More personal and friendlier
- Users appreciate less frequent and more valuable updates from their brands
- Must like business to become a fan so it’s heavily opt in in nature
- Great for humanising your brand
LinkedIn “the professional”
- More formal; users generally have fewer connections
- Share industry and business-focused content
- Reserved for business conversations
- Great for demonstrating expertise and knowledge
Google+ “the search optimiser”
- Less active than some, but favours valuable content
- +1 buttons showing up next to results can improve click through rates
- Great for local search optimisation
Content matching is extremely important and can allow for you to establish what content to create, and above all, what networks you should be on. There’s no industry that shouldn’t have a social media presence. Like I always say, Social media is not a trend, its an innovation of conversation. Social media essentially gave internet users something to do when their not researching, hence why it is responsible for a large percentage of overall internet usage. This informal training led us into sharing content differently and connecting with people differently. To be successful online you must utilise all the tools of the internet, and social media is one of the biggest. This is achieved by allowing people to connect with you online and inspiring them to share your content.
However, be careful not to get caught in the trap of using social media as a front to present yourselves as something you aren’t. Neither should you establish a social presence without thinking carefully how your going to manage it. Setting up an online presence alone won’t suddenly make an organisation more social. The question for a organisation to ask is not whether to use social media. The question to ask is how to make your organisation more engaging. An antisocial organisation using social media is still an antisocial organisation. Figuring out what content you want to create and then matching it according to the audience and the network their on is just one of the few steps required when delving into the world of social networking for business.