Any successful marketing strategy includes writing content specifically posted to social platforms. In order to increase business practices and attract clientele, you can’t seem to live without social media channels promoting your work. However, only having those platforms is not enough. The content written and posted on any platform, be it a Tweet or a blog post, should always make the reader want to read more and be specific to the platform. For instance, you aren’t going to write long paragraphs promoting your product on Twitter but you might do this on Facebook. In order to write this type of engaging content, it is important to keep this question in mind. “Does this sort of content encourage people to engage with my business?”
Answering “yes” to the proposed question is certainly possible. Successful written content has many benefits to your business, and these results can be seen in many ways.
- Increase in website traffic
- User engagement
- More clicks
- Conversations discussing your business
- Higher sales
- Being mentioned in third-party posts
In order to engage your audience and see the mentioned results, there are a few things you can keep in mind.
Headers and Sub-Headers
The first words someone reads are of vital importance. If not engaging enough, it will be the last words of your content they read. But it can also be a positive thing. A catchy header can peak the reader’s attention and keep them wanting more. And that is exactly what you want, your opener should pique enough interest that the reader will keep reading.
The header is the focal point of your post. It should encompass the main idea of your point in a single line. This feat can be easier said than done as condensing a 500 word blog post into 5 words can seem impossible. It is important to ask yourself these questions when choosing the perfect header and sub-header:
- What is the one thing I want the reader to know about this post?
- What would make me want to click on this article?
- How can I connect this heading to others previously written?
Let’s look at an example. Say you are writing a blog post about a new business technique you will be incorporating into your business practice in the next few months. That is certainly exciting news that needs to be shared with your clientele as it indicates a change in the way things currently done. A header and sub-header might look something like this:
Out with the Old and in with the New:
New business technique set to improve features
With this example, you get right to the point of what the article is about while not giving everything away. The header and sub-header is set up to give them just enough to keep reading for more.
Call your Clientele to Action
An important feature of well-written content is its ability produces a reaction. Just like Newton’s third law, your reader is going to have some sort of reaction to what you post, whether it is positive, negative, or neutral. Any of those can cause a reader to post some sort of reply, but you want your content to enact a positive one.
You must determine what is it you want. More clicks? More comments? If you do not know the intent of a post, chances are the reader will not either.
A great way to cause your reader to react to what they are reading is by embedding hyperlinks into the post. Hyperlinks give your reader a next step of what they can do to keep learning about your business through some sort of other avenue. If you mention a past project in an article, link it to that article in the new post. You gain a higher chance that those engaging with your article will go down a rabbit hole of engaging with other content posted.
Another way to generate reader engagement is by asking for it. Every social media platform has different ways that a user can engage with a post. On Instagram, you can like a picture. On Twitter, you can re-Tweet a post. Every action possible is a positive hit for your content. In order to get these hits, try asking for the reader’s opinion on what is being posted. Here is a positive reader engagement example from Target’s Twitter account:
In this example, Target does a good job of asking a direct question that engages all types of users while also plugging in a sister-business. Posts such as this one call for positive reactions.
It is important to make your call for reaction specific. If left too broad, you could be setting yourself up for reactions you do not want such as negative comments about a product. Just as stated above, remember to think about the reaction you want from your readers before posting the initial post.
Less is More
When it comes to tag lines on posts or headers, less is certainly more. Be concise and get right to the point. You only have a few seconds before your reader decides whether they want to keep reading or skip to the next thing. What you write is intended to be remembered. Too many words or too complicated of jargon will instantly turn off your reader to your idea. And if done too many times, it could turn your reader off to your business. Keep it short and to the point.
A good way to keep information concise is to use lists. Lists have the potential to be engaging to readers because they are easy to follow and to understand. It provides all of the important information without having to read large amount of texts. Obviously lists should not be used in all cases, but it is a good tactic to organize otherwise confusing information.
Another way to be concise is by using graphics. A picture is worth a thousand words, and they are a good tactic to use to keep your postings fresh. Adding images to blog posts breaks up content and offers a new way to relay information. Putting data into charts or graphs can explain a lot of information in a small amount of space. It is also beneficial for tying in multiple topics that otherwise would require a lengthy explanation.
Being selective with graphics is a high priority. It could be tempting to snap a picture of the first photo-worthy thing you see and somehow connect it to your topic, but clients will see right through that. Be creative with the way you display information. This will look different for every business. However, no matter the business, it is important to stick to images that collectively look good together. If you were to put all of your images on one page, it is more eye catching if the images contain a certain flow. Matching color schemes is an easy way to be appealing to the eye. Clients will start to associate those colors with your brand, which is an added bonus.
Just like being careful with your wording when asking for reader engagement, it is crucial to only choose images that positively reflect your brand. Once a photo is uploaded, it will never cease to exist. Make sure the images you put your business’ name on are ones you would want to live on.
Proofread then Proofread Again
A mistake is the first thing that will be noticed. It does not matter if the mistake is nestled in the best written blog post of the century. It is an instant turn off to clientele because it reflects your business as unprofessional. Never write and post; bringing content to the editing board is the only way to guarantee perfection. You should look for mistakes in grammar, punctuation, and spelling errors in all written content. There are a few techniques you can use to make sure you are not missing and glaring editing mistakes:
- Have someone else proofread it – Chances are you have become blind to your own mistakes just by staring at it on a screen for an extended period of time. Having someone else look for the mistakes in your work helps find errors you did not see.
- Use an editing service – These days, there are multiple resources one can turn to if they are not sure on the correct use of “effect” and “affect.” Grammarly is a great service that checks for all written mistakes in documents, and there are others out there that could be beneficial to your company.
- Take a break – Just like with having someone else read for your mistakes, taking a break away from your work does wonder for your perception. You are bound to notice more mistakes with fresh eyes.
- Print it out – Seeing your words on a screen sometimes does not cut it when it comes to editing. Having your words printed out and in front of you helps see it in a new light. Take a red pen and mark everything that does not seem right.
Do your homework
Before you post, make sure it has not been posted before. Do your research to see if your idea is just a reiteration of someone else’s, or if you are jumping in on a trend late. Failing to do your research when it comes to posting can do a couple things:
- Damage credibility
- Make your information repetitive
- Represent your brand as unoriginal
There are many ways you can do your homework to make sure your content is truly yours. Keeping up with pop-culture websites can show what types of images are being associated with which trends. Researching the most current business practices can save you from talking about old news. Above all, you want to research before you post to ensure that you are not stealing from someone else. Whether intentional or not, copying content is a bad business practice.
Use the Right Keywords
Finding those keywords that create buzz for your business is helpful in all forms of writing. Keywords not only help to increase your search engine ranking, but they show a relevance to your brand. Repeat keywords across your platforms to increase the likelihood of new clientele noticing your business. Just like with the similar color schemes in photos, having keywords is a subliminal way your clientele can associate you with your brand.
Keywords can be utilized in multiple social media platforms:
- Twitter – add keyword phrases into your bio
- Facebook page – add keywords into your page’s “category”
- LinkedIn – add keywords to your company’s description
- Instagram – add keywords into your bio and stories
While it is important to utilize keywords, you want to be careful to not go overboard. You do not want to load your social platforms and pages with keywords because it could lead to a visitor assuming that your site is a spam site. Finding a natural way to incorporate keywords will get you the results you need without looking unprofessional. If you are not sure the best way to utilize keywords, look to your competitors. See what they are currently doing and formulate a way of how you could do it better.
Writing content that fits with your brand and audience requires many elements to make your writing the best it can be. By engaging clients, using headers and sub-headers, calling your clientele to action, using the ‘less is more’ tactic, editing and doing your homework can ensure that the written content your produce shows off all positive aspects of your brand. Keep your personal business and brand in mind when it comes to creating new content. If one tactic does not work well for you, do not be afraid to change it. Every business is different, but well written content can help any business thrive in today’s competitive market.