This is a guest post by Zak Nicola of Gigasavvy.
The Basics Behind Successful Social Media Campaigns
To say everyone uses social media is not an overstatement. The vast majority of people and businesses use it in some shape or form. From school kids, to the local cupcake shop, and even the President of the United States — social media is used to share ideas, promote products, and connect people. We’ve found that there are some key factors to sharing, promoting, and connecting successfully on social media.
It may go without saying, but to have your shared content be received well on social media, you need to have something worth sharing, and someone to share it with. The message and the audience work best when joined by mutual interests. The reverse, sending the wrong message to the wrong audience, can have very negative results. Ever offer a doughnut to someone that can’t have gluten? Talk about a disaster!
Avoid those social media snafus. Here is some advice you can start using right away to improve your social media and blog promotion strategies today.
Crafting Your Message
Having content that is new, unique, exciting, and timelessly valuable often gets amazing engagement, but there are other ways to provide content that people will want to engage with online. Creating content that is relevant to current and trending topics can be simple if you know where to look for topics and ideas. Here are some good places to start:
- Twitter Advanced Search is a great resource for finding supporting remarks on current events.
- Trendsmap.com view what hashtags are trending and where, graphed out on a map.
- Google Trends is not only great for comparing search interest on topics, but you can endlessly scroll on the page for a list of trending articles.
- RSS Feed – if you don’t have any subscriptions to blogs for your personal use, consider setting one up for keeping abreast of trending topics in the niche(s) you care most about promoting socially.
Social Media Loves Images
It’s no secret, everyone loves a good image to accompany a captivating story or article. Posts on Facebook that contain an image get an average of 53 percent more likes, and 104 percent more comments. On Twitter, a predominantly text-based social media platform, tweets with images have an even greater impact. Images on Twitter have shown to cause to 36 percent increase in clicks, 31 percent more visits to a linked article, 41 percent increase in retweets, 48 percent more favorites, and an impressive 55 percent increase in leads. The moral of this story here is simple: use images, especially when promoting your blog on social media. (source)
Sharing Your Message
There are dozens of articles and tips on how to promote your blog on social media, but the best advice came from a man that died before the first digital social network even existed. Dale Carnegie once said, “You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.” This concept plays out exceptionally well on social media.
Find bloggers in your target niche that you can interact with — we’ll call them neighbors. Read their articles, mention a post of theirs in a post of your own with a link to it, engage with the conversation in the comments. More often than not, this type of engagement will be reciprocated over time, and as a bonus, your neighbor’s audience is now introduced to the new neighbor (you) on the block.
Share at the Best Times
Not all markets have the same audience, but every social media platform has its best and worst times for engagement. Below are the peak times for audience, best times for engagement, and the worst times to post. Keep in mind, the best time for most might not be the best time for you. Make sure to check your analytics on each platform (ex. Facebook Insights) for when your unique audience is the most engaged.
- Peak: 3PM Wednesday
- Best: 1-4PM Weekdays
- Worst: Weekends, before 8AM, after 8PM
- Peak: Monday-Thursday 9AM- 3PM
- Best: Monday-Thursday 1PM- 3PM
- Worst: Friday after PM, everyday after 8PM
- Peak: Tuesday-Thursday at noon and 5-6PM
- Best: Noon Wednesday
- Worst: Monday and Friday, 10PM- 6AM
- Peak: Weekdays 9-10AM
- Best: Wednesday, 9AM
- Worst: Weekends, before 8AM, after 3PM
- Peak: Fridays 3PM
- Best: Saturday morning
- Worst: Weekdays during work hours
- Peak: Sunday-Thursday 7-10PM
- Best: Friday 7PM
- Worst: Before 4PM
You may have noticed we left Instagram off of the list above. While Instagram is very popular, its ability to drive traffic is extremely limited. Like a billboard that catches your eye on the freeway, there is value for the brand, but a conversion is hard to quantify.
You may find that you’re not always able to engage with social media at these times, but there are tools available for scheduling and automating. Many of these free and paid tools, such as Buffer or IFTTT, can automate the sharing of your posts on various social networks. Another handy use of these types of automated sharing tools is that you can create a follow up share. Simply set the time a week after the first share, change the messaging to something like “Did you miss this last week?” and set the time to be an hour after the original share from last week. This can help to give those well-crafted articles a second wind, and helps increase the chance of getting in front of those who may have missed it the first time around.
More Social Promotion Tips
These tips and tricks on how to promote your blog via social media are the building blocks from which any great campaign typically follows. Each niche has its own quirks, and you may find that not every social media channel is right for you. Focus on the networks that matter most to your audience. Pay attention to your audience, and what they engage with most. Review what messages have been the best received, and expand on those efforts.
What simple little tricks did you find to be most helpful when you first started building out an audience on social media? Are there any you feel we’ve missed? Share your experience with readers in the comments — who knows, you might make a new neighbor!