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Socially Stephanie: Social Media Posting Best Practices
Posted on January 18th 2014
Dear Socially Stephanie,
I just don't think I'm doing social media right. I post frequently and on all of the most popular social networks. I think I'm posting the kind of stuff my customer wants to see but it just doesn't seem to get Likes, comments, or shares on any networks. Is there a right way to post? By the way, my company is a clothing line for babies.
Dear Posting Problems,
Well let's start with the bad news. Sounds like you're doing something wrong here. If this was only happening on Facebook, I'd say you were definitely not alone. Organic reach is declining on Facebook at an alarming rate. But since you say this is happening all over the social web, I'm going to have to say you might need a little lesson in posting perfection.
Now that the bad news is out of the way—Yes, go ahead, let out that sigh of relief—here's the good news. What I'm about to tell you is totally learnable, and after this little session, you'll be well on your way to social media success.
Being a good social sharer is important for a few reasons. It brings traffic back to your site on an instantaneous level, keeps your name in front of your customers on a regular basis, and over time it'll help with your search ranking. These things are obviously very important for a business who is looking to be found on the web.
The first thing you need to know is that if you want to be successful with your social media shares, you have to work within the context of that particular site. With that said, if up until now you've been sharing the same thing word for word on each network, that's your main problem. Posting the same content on every single site is like ordering a steak at a vegetarian restaurant. It's just wrong!
Social media—and marketing, in general—is all about delivering the right message in the right context at the right time to the right person. By effectively using social media sites you're able to deliver just that.
As your customers and target audiences are female—more specifically, all the moms out there—I want you to focus on Pinterest, Instagram, and GooglePlus (I'll explain my reasoning for G+ later). Let's break it down network by network, shall we?
Pinterest is all about the image. If you want to get repinned, liked and clicked, your image must invite your reader in. Keep in mind that red pins work better than blue and longer images tend to get more repins. Your Pinterest shares will also be more successful if you think about and optimize your description. 80% of people Repin images. And most of those people will Repin an image and not bother to change the description at all. This puts the OP (Original Pinner) at a huge advantage. Use keywords that are very specific, keywords you want to be found for. These will be attached to your Pin, plus all the other Repins. Not sure why that matters? As people search on Pinterest for products just like yours, you'll get found multiple times in the stream of millions of Pins. That's where you win.
Now that we have Pinterest on lock, let's talk Instagram. Instagram and baby pictures? Yes, please! Moms love Instagram. And moms also love looking at babies and kids. Don't believe me? Check out the following hashtags: #kidsfashion, #fashionkids, #toddlerfashion.
Start using those hashtags. Hashtags are the number 1 way to get more likes and attention on Instagram. Those hashtags specifically, and others like them, are going to be the key to unlocking the #mommiesofInstagram playground. Many of these hashtags are also compilation pages where they feature others' photos. Get in with one of them and your clothes will be in front of millions of mommies. Okay, I'm getting ahead of myself. Let's perfect your standard Instagram post first. Besides using hashtags, think about the image you're sharing. Don't just post the product or outfit; post it with an adorably precious baby wearing it. Oh, and think about using a blue filter. Unlike on Pinterest, blue on Instagram is a like magnet.
And finally, Google Plus. You might be thinking, isn't Google Plus mostly males? Yes. It is. But Google Plus is growing at about 25,000 new users a day and Google Plus Play is going to help your search engine ranking soar. It's best to get in now before it's too late. Luckily, on Google Plus, images are the most commonly consumed content. Are you noticing a trend here? To make your post stand out, think about using a 800x600 sized image and include a longer description.
This is Google, and Google reigns supreme for the search category. Once you've posted your image with a description and a link back to your site, share it in a community. Communities are where the real interaction lives on Google Plus. You'll grow your following there and it will trickle over just in time for top search billing.
How do you feel? Confident for posting perfection? Excellent. Now, go get 'em.
Do you have a question for Socially Stephanie?
Please email SociallyStephanie@socialmediatoday.com and let Stephanie help you solve your social quandaries, queries, and boondoggles. (Questions may be edited for length and clarity.)
Illustration by Jesse Wells