Keeping it fresh on social media can be a challenge. Once you get in a groove, it’s easy to keep delivering quality content in the same old ways. Clever tweets with images in them. Carousel posts on Instagram showing off new products or event photos. Enticing Facebook events that make everyone want to click “Interested.”
That’s great! But we can take it to the next level with just a bit more effort and planning. Here are five creative tactics you can try on social media:
1) Instagram Story Takeovers
Allowing someone else to take over your company’s Instagram account is a great way to keep things interesting. Ideally, you’ll select someone who is relevant to your target audience and who has a following of their own. That way, when they share with their own audience that they’re taking over your Instagram Story, you’ll get an extra boost in followers and engagement as that person’s supporters come over to your account check out the takeover.
If you try this tactic, make sure you provide clear instructions to the person taking over your Story. Will they send content to you in advance that you review, approve, and post (my recommendation), or will they have full access to the account and share in real time? Either is acceptable, it’s all a matter of what your organization’s comfort level is!
My favorite example of this? Girls’ Night In is an online community for women who would rather stay in. Each week, they allow a different microinfluencer to take over their Instagram Story to share their Sunday self-care routines. As a social media follower in their target demographic, I find it fascinating and engaging, and always make sure to tune in for this regular feature.
2) Live Q&As
In 2019, social media users crave authenticity above anything else. It’s no longer about influencers with perfectly curated lives. Instead, people are turning towards individuals who share what’s real.
Going Live and doing a Q&A is a great way to humanize a brand and connect with your followers. Just look at Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez- she’s fast approaching four million Instagram followers, and a large part of her appeal is the transparency and access she offers. You can see her real life, planting veggies in a community garden or cooking dinner in an InstaPot, as she answers questions from her constituents about the issues that matter to them most.
It can be scary to do a Live Q&A because it’s truly live—there’s no taking back whatever someone says during the stream. But don’t let that scare you off! Try a short one for 10-15 minutes; there’s no need to commit to an hour-long Q&A. Want to make it a little less intimidating? Ask for questions in advance using the questions sticker—then start out by answering them. You’ll have a little more time to prepare, and it will get you in the swing of things before taking questions off the cuff. You’ve got this, and your audience will love it!
3) Unbranded Content
Many businesses make the mistake of sharing content that solely promotes their products/offerings. Certainly, promote your stuff, but that’s not all your audience wants to see. Think about where they’re spending time and why they’re there. They’re flicking through Instagram, seeing their friends’ updates about brunch and hiking and wine. And they chose to follow you! A Brand! So be more like their friends—share content you know will resonate with them, even if it’s not directly related to or promotional of your company.
Bra company ThirdLove is doing an awesome job of this on Instagram. They know their audience, and they mix their high-quality bra and underwear photos with bold quotes and motivational phrases. They encourage women to be rebellious, to love themselves, and to be open and courageous. Not what you’d expect from your average bra company, but it works! These unbranded posts rack up the likes and comments, and their audience’s loyalty grows.
4) Show Your Support
If your company cares about a particular cause, show support online. Awareness-building national holidays/weeks such as Mental Health Awareness Week or Black History Month are a good place to start. Sharing thoughtful comments for these awareness-building weeks/months can add value for and resonate with your audience.
Consider Grammarly, an online app that checks your spelling and grammar. They went all-in on Mental Health Awareness Week, sharing thought-provoking visuals and hopeful, reassuring phrases (scroll back to May to see their Instagram posts from that week). These posts received high engagement from their audience, and it was a good way to show support for a community while growing brand loyalty.
5) Interactive Content
We’ve all been on the internet. We know that people love to share their opinions. Interacting is important. It’s a great way to increase engagement on your social accounts, and can even be used to gather feedback or crowdsource ideas for future content. It could inspire social posts or stories for your company blog. Try out polls, the questions sticker, and quizzes, and see what your audience is thinking!
All of these ideas came from my own experiences as a consumer of content on social media. The time you think you’re wasting scrolling through your feed doesn’t have to be wasteful! If you’re actively engaged in thinking about what works and what doesn’t, you can become a more conscious consumer of social content, and an even better social media marketer. Good luck!
Have questions about implementing these tactics? Need to hire someone to assist? Contact me today 😊