Share your knowledge. It’s a way to achieve immortality. – Dalai Lama
Sharing and word of mouth marketing have been concepts humans have utilized for many years. We asked for toys because our friends had them and shared gossip, along with our lunch, in the junior high cafeteria. But what happens to these concepts as we grow up? Businesses use these basic ideas to connect with their target audiences through a large game of telephone. The most recent way they do this is by creating shareable social media content. Here are some tips for making sure your content is shareable and not just likable:
- Make one goal for your post: Many businesses try going for everything (likes, shares and comments) and get nothing. By making one goal, you make the call-to-action clear for the reader. This infographic from Mashable explains how to create posts for different actions and why they work best.
- Amuse, inspire or amaze: Funny pictures, inspirational quotes and interesting facts are among the top shareable content categories. For examples, read Marketo’s e-book, Contagious Content.
- Offer deals, discounts or contests: These types of content are typically applicable to a large group of your customers and prospects. After all, everyone likes to be a winner.
- Create polls: Everyone has an opinion. Creating posts that compel them to use their voice is a great way to ask for a share.
Of course with any other strategy, there are some don’ts:
- Don’t just talk about yourself: If you think about social media as a cocktail party, no one likes to stand with the guy talking about himself all night. Be sure to make your readers feel included.
- Don’t share the same thing over and over again: Do your research before posting online. Creating content calendars, researching competitors and tracking analytics will all make sure you break through the clutter and are seen by your audience.
- Don’t ask for likes: How many times do you see a post that says, “Like this post for…?” It may work for a young audience, but if you’re trying to get someone to follow your page or buy your product, this approach is just going to get you what you’re asking for, a like—not a commitment. In fact, Facebook is now punishing Pages for “like-baiting.” You can read more about their changes here.
And, remember—when creating social media content, make sure your content is consistent and has one voice. Social media is an expansion of your website or marketing collateral and should reflect your company accurately.
What are some of your tips for creating shareable content?
Photo Credit: Flickr’s Andrew Stawarz