Social Media Marketing | Our Content Guide
Epistolary, refers to the writing of letters. The introduction of the telephone in the 19th century changed our means of communication forever, as we swapped the pen for the phone. But now Social Media Marketing has brought us back to where we began, with the written word. Of course we have added images and video to the mix. Social Media Marketing is about connection. At VOLT LAB our interdisciplinary approach to social media content development ensures that your brand is spread across various platforms.
Other social media services we provide:
Not another baby pic!
Users do not engage with Social Media content to read about your product. Sorry, it hurts but it’s true. The same way as your colleagues get tired of seeing pictures of your kids, (Yes, again hurtful but true) we don’t want our social accounts to be cluttered with ads. But, and herein lies the crux, we do want content that is engaging, we do want to be part of the ‘club’ that is either part of our actual or aspirational lives.
Club House Rules
- Human connection is the basis of communication, it’s how you make someone feel. You need to speak to your online users in their own language. Their language is not “Buy now!” nor is it slang which is contrived and a no-no even for tweens. Social Media language is the language of friends. Content is King! Engaging content leads to engagement which is first prize on the social media scene. Research has shown that users are not driven by content that is trying to be trendy, what they do respond to is honesty, friendly, helpful and funny posts. Much like a close friend really, you want your friend to be there for you, not to show you up by pretending to be better.
- Long before twitter we had the Style Bible, The Elements of Style, where these prophetic words still ring true: “Omit needless words…This requires not that the writer make all his sentences short, or that he avoid all detail and treat his subjects only in outline, but that every word tell.” The Elements of Style – “William Strunk, Jr. & E.B. White” (1959).
Whether we’re confined by Twitter’s 140 characters or not, social media posts, with the exception of blogging, need to be short. While there are many sites, a staple diet of Social Media Branding needs the trusted trio: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Social Media Marketing Platforms
Facebook: This is the biggest social media network and is ideal for creating a personable feel to your brand. Hold back on hashtags as it can be jarring. Keep your posts short with one central message. Stock images will only work if they are mixed and matched with authentic images. Engage with the user through interesting social media content.
Twitter: Due to the restriction of 140 characters there is less brand personality. We shave off the frills and tweet it how it is. We research hashtags to ensure high traction.140 characters is on average between 18 & 25 words.
So that means you have to save the waffle for teatime & keep it short & sweet. At VOLT LAB we #love #SocialMedia & it shows with our results!
The above sentence is 140 characters.
At the time of writing the popularity ranking of the above words were as follows:
- Social Media – 82.1%
- Love – 89.1%
- Tea- 67.5%
So it makes sense when relevant to use the hashtag which is going to earn a higher traction.
Instagram: Unlike Facebook, this photo-sharing site is particularly popular with the younger market. Like Twitter, this is a happy home for Hashtags. While Facebook portrays life how it is, users on Twitter present an aspirational life seen through filters.
Mobile messaging: WhatsApp Facebook messenger and Snapchat have 4 billion active users. Snapchat is especially popular with younger audiences and works well for direct offers. It’s less about branding and more about call-to action.
Video content: This has an extremely high ROI. Whether as rumoured it’s Facebook’s algorithms or the fact that video engages more senses, and it’s easier to view a video than read text, Video is a sure way to gain traction.
Stand Out From The Social Clutter
We keep it simple. We play with words and phrases to create surprise. We make concepts easy to understand, and actions simple to follow. We introduce credibility through User Generated Social Media Content. We start from a place of authenticity. We tell stories. At VOLT LAB we get the Likes, Retweets and Hearts, we get the response.
For a high Organic Reach don’t spam but do:
- Blog: This goes back to the adage: Content is King. It’s been proven that a highly effective way to increase your search engine rankings is through blogging. If your blog is interesting people will read it. No need to keep it short, 1200 to 1400 words if bloggable!
- Visual: Over a third of marketers said they receive a bigger response to images than even blogs! Research conducted shows that retention is easier when there is an image to match the text. If you are going to use stock images, mix and match. Real images are always more authentic.
- Facebook groups: All users will see the posts appear in their newsfeeds – so this helps with reach.
- Keywords: You want users to find you and by using the correct words or a string or words they will find you via their search engine. Choose your words judiciously and don’t binge on hashtags.
- Tag: Tagging people or organizations increases your post’s reach. It also adds useful information to your post. Remember to us @ before the name and you’ll easily find the person/organization. Always double check you’ve tagged the right @JohnSmith. Before you tag that big business, ensure that your post is relevant and you’re including as opposed to hijacking them.
- For street cred do promote User Generated Content. 80% of online content is user generated. Only 1% of people trust a brand’s advertising. 92% trust peer recommendation.
Language & Social Media
Active voice: When possible use the active tense. The passive tense is far too wordy for social media content. Eg:
Active tense: Her books contain beautiful pictures. (37 characters)
Passive tense: Beautiful pictures are contained in her books. (45 characters)
Alliteration: The repetition of consonants. Helpful for wanting to imprint your message. Again overuse is cheesey. What is effective is to break the alliteration, Eg: Lily Loved Volt Lab!
Antonyms: Words of opposite value can be used to highlight the message. Eg: Old and Young, Rich and Poor. This is a tight way to explain your concept.
Assonance: The repetition of stressed vowel sounds. Like alliteration this device helps with retention. Eg: Fun in the Sun.
Floral language: As a rule keep the flowers for a vase, and avoid floral language. Clarity comes before poetry.
Interjections: These words express emotions or feelings and help create a mood quickly. They are usually followed by an exclamation mark. Eg: Wow! What a great offer.
Metaphor: A figure of speech in which the abstract is made concrete by comparing it to something else. This is a great device to conjure up positive association and works well on Social Media. Eg: Volt Lab is a Social Media textbook.
Onomatopoeia: When words sound like what they’re describing. This can be used to create a fun post: Eg: Time to pop the bubbly.
Paradox: On the surface it seems to contradict itself but on closer examination has validity. Don’t use cliches, but if you can come up with a clever paradox this is a powerful and succinct way to get your message across. Change comes from stability.
Parallel structures: If the structures are not parallel, it leads to faulty parallelism. Again you may decide to use this to stand out. Eg:(correct) I like dancing, singing and laughing. Eg: (Incorrect) I like dancing singing and to laugh.
Proofreading: The most creative post in the world are is rong if it contains typos and grammar errors. (Yup we did that deliberately).
Repetition: While clumsy repetition diminishes, eg. Enjoy dancing and enjoy our singing. When repetition is used rhythmically with intent, it can enhance the post. Say yes to dancing, say yes to singing, say yes to hot Cabana nights. Clearly this links to parallel structures.
Simile: Comparing two things using Like. Eg: Our resort is like paradise.
Word order: The basic word order in English subject, verb, object. In Social Media be mindful where you place the “hero” of the post. Some schools of Social Media Thought, say always use the strong word at the end. Others say, call to action should be at the end. Presuming you’re posting at least 15 social media posts a month, we say you have enough room to do both!
Sense: Use your common sense, think of your target market and ask yourself this question: “If you were them, would you read & respond to the this post?”
Zeitgeist: Posts need to reflect the spirit of the times, and culture. Research before you write.
Connect. Engage & Respond. Ensure that your brand has a strong emotional IQ and you’re on your way. Like.Love. Retweet.