Hit the ground running with social media content

What is social media content anyway?
What makes social media content so special?
What are the social media platforms?
How To: Develop a Social Media Content Strategy
Content that suits you – Develop ideas and get inspired
How can you measure the success of your social media marketing?
To sum it up!

What is social media content anyway?

In short, social media content is all the content that a company or individual shares on one of the numerous social networks. The content can be a wide variety of content types – whether photo, text or video, almost anything can be shared. In the meantime, social media has even developed into a real information source. The purpose of social media is therefore changing: Facebook and the like used to be used mainly for communication and to tell friends and acquaintances what was happening in their own lives. Today, news and news from all over the world are obtained via social media instead of newspapers or televisions. Social media content is thus a substitute source that informs. This is precisely what companies are interested in, which is why social networks should definitely be part of the marketing strategy. Content for content’s sake won’t get you anywhere, though. As with any content type, it’s important that you don’t publish content indiscriminately. It needs to be tailored to the target group and provide value to your followers.

What makes social media content so special?

The exciting thing about social media is the interactions that your profile thrives on. Through likes and comments, users can specifically tell you how good they think your content is. So you get immediate feedback from your followers. In addition, the content can be shared very easily. This increases the reach and in the best case leads to a real viral trend. Sharing can be compared to word of mouth. A user thereby recommends content to all the people he is networked with, as the content he shares is played out in their feed. They can then in turn liked or shared and spread it further in their own network. With social media content, you thus open up the possibility for you and your company to interact “face-to-face”, even if only virtually, with your followers. Social platforms are thus a communication channel that should not be underestimated.

What are the social media platforms?

There are a variety of social media services. However, depending on the platform, they pursue different goals or address different target groups. The social media prism gives you an insight into the broad mass of possible channels. You will also see a rough breakdown of all services. You will find platforms that you might not have classified as social media at first – Evernote or FAZ.net, for example. Then again, there are the classics that everyone is probably familiar with like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Social Media Prism – Germany’s Social Networks at a glance, ©Ethority

As you can see, there is an opportunity for pretty much every area of your life to become part of a social media platform. Be it sports, food, travel, music or work and profession – There are no limits for you. But of course, not all services are perfect for your business. Below, we’ll introduce you to some of the most popular and best-performing social media channels that have now established themselves in marketing strategies.

Facebook

Facebook is probably a household name to everyone. The social platform has been around in the form we know it today since 2004, but a lot has happened in the past few years. In terms of design, the platform has evolved, and there is more: Facebook bought not only the platform Instagram (in 2012), but also the messenger service WhatsApp (in 2014). With all three apps, Facebook Inc. has a total of almost 3 billion users and is present worldwide. Every day, 1.7 billion users are active on Facebook alone. The community is mixed. While in the past, young people were more likely to be on the platform, people over 60 are now also increasingly becoming active members.

KPIs zur Erfolgsmessung von Social Media Content
Statistics of daily active Facebook users, Source: Facebook

Facebook also acquired the Giphy service in 2020, expanding its spectrum once again. Giphy is an online database where GIFs and animated stickers can be found. The service is expected to be integrated mainly with Instagram, as users there like to use GIFs in their Stories.

Facebook is primarily a platform for private contacts, but it is also increasingly becoming a platform for businesses. Recently, for example, there have been Facebook shops that allow businesses to sell through Facebook. In addition, the social media channel serves as a digital corporate presence. Companies can keep followers up to date on it and offer background information. They can present themselves more personally and give their company a face. In this way, they increase their transparency and trustworthiness and also pay dividends in terms of brand image. Especially promotions that should quickly reach many users, such as sales or the like, can be spread quickly through the large community on Facebook.

Instagram

Instagram was founded in 2010 and is a blend of microblog and audiovisual platform. In 2012, the social media service was acquired by Facebook. Worldwide, the network now has 1 billion users. In Germany, there are 15 million – a gigantic reach. The basic idea behind Instagram is the distribution of visual content, i.e. images and videos that are uploaded to the user’s news feed. The news feed shows you the activities and postings of all the pages you follow on Instagram. By liking a page, you also activate its status updates. Since 2016, there is also the “Stories” function. Here, images and videos are often combined with text and displayed in a slideshow. Stories posts are not displayed in the normal Instagram feed and, unlike normal posts, disappear automatically after 24 hours.
Also since 2016, there has been the option of using the social network commercially. Here you can convert your own profile into a business profile (the so-called “business account”). The advantage of this type of account is that you can gain deeper insights into the behavior of your followers. Instagram offers you special statistics for this and you can also use your profile to place ads to reach users who do not yet follow you. Other functions such as the visual shop window have been available since 2018, allowing you to highlight products in your pictures and direct your users to your online store. Since 2020, the newly introduced Facebook stores are also available on Instagram.

Example of a virtual storefront on Instagram

The main audience for Instagram is female and between the ages of 14 and 29. Instagram is often used as a business card of sorts to provide interested users with more information about the company and behind-the-scenes insights.

Twitter

Twitter is a microblogging service that has now been around since 2006. Worldwide, the platform quickly became very popular because you can get to the point information. So it’s more about efficient information transfer than about beautiful pictures and videos. For this purpose, people and companies publish so-called tweets, i.e. short messages that are shared with followers. Within a tweet, hashtags, links, images, locations and references to other profiles can be inserted. However, everything is limited to a maximum length of 280 Unicode characters. The published messages can then in turn be “retweeted,” i.e., shared.

Twitter has 166 million daily active users worldwide. One of the largest and most famous users of tweets is Donald Trump. He uses the service extensively to share news. Similar to the other social networks, the platform offers the possibility of placing Twitter Ads. The Twitter community tends to be dominated by men aged around 25-44.

YouTube

The video portal YouTube was founded in 2005. The platform is now the second widest-reaching social media service worldwide, with 2 billion monthly active users watching more than one billion hours of videos worldwide every day. The video portal has been a subsidiary of Google since 2006 and thus benefits from its expertise. You can use your Google Ads account to create YouTube Ads, for example, which are then also played out in the Google partner network. The increase in young YouTube users is striking. Most of the community’s users are between 16 and 29 years old. Nonetheless, YouTube is a platform for all ages.

Pinterest

Pinterest was founded in 2010 and currently has 367 million active users. This platform is also heavily based on visual content and is a kind of visual search engine for ideas. The uploaded images and videos can be saved to one’s own pinboard by means of a “pin”. You could thus also see the network as a kind of virtual mood board for a wide variety of topics. After all, it’s all about discovering new things and getting inspiration. By linking the images, users can also be directed to external websites with a click.

In Germany, around 7 million people use Pinterest and save around 4 million pieces of content each month. In 2019 and – comparatively late – Pinterest rolled out ads.

Example of a Pinterest Ad from Motel a Miio

Snapchat

Snapchat is a photo, video and text messenger founded in 2011. However, unlike what you might know from WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger, users here talk almost exclusively about pictures. Another key difference is that pictures can be viewed a maximum of twice before they disappear for good. In addition to sending pictures and messages in the chat, you also have the option of uploading Stories, similar to Instagram. These are displayed to all of your followers and are automatically deleted after 24 hours. The network now has 229 million users (April 2020), so it has grown by 39 million users since 2019. The service mainly appeals to younger people. More than half of all users are between the ages of 16 and 26. Thus, this service is very suitable for searching for apprentices, for example.

Through the platform, you can distribute sponsored content and place ads. As a very special form of content, you can create Sponsored Geofilters and Sponsored Lenses. These are filters that you can place over the shot image to incorporate your products in a humorous way.

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TikTok

The latest hype is called TikTok. The app has only been around since 2016, making it one of the youngest social media platforms. It succeeded musical.ly in 2018 and hails from Asia. Similar to Snapchat, the platform appeals to the young audience. It thrives on short clips that are recorded to a specific song or audio and then pimped with special effects or filters. While the music thus plays in the background, users record a video to go with it, which can be a maximum of 60 seconds long. With the help of challenges such as the “Wipe Challenge” you manage to go viral.

Since TikTok is still very young, there is not yet the possibility of advertising in all countries.

Wipe Challenge of Will Smith

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a professional network and was founded in 2003. It has been part of Microsoft since 2016. The purpose of the platform is to make and maintain business contacts. With the help of a profile, you can network here with colleagues and business partners you already know, as well as with people in the industry who are still unknown to you or users from outside the industry. The community tends to be older for this reason. Nearly 90% of LinkedIn users are split between the 35-49 and over-50 age groups.

Of particular interest is the function that allows you to publish professional articles. You can add these to your profile and thus highlight your expertise on certain topics. This way, you also enhance your profile and increase the interaction of your followers with your content.

You can also create a profile for your company. Through this, interested users can connect with you and also follow your company news.

Xing

Just like LinkedIn, Xing focuses on profession and career. As a result, the platform’s users are also mainly between the ages of 30 and 69. More than half of them have a high school diploma or a university degree. Another third holds a management position.  Unlike its direct competitor, however, the service specializes in German-speaking countries and is therefore hardly international. The way this platform works is similar to LinkedIn’s, but it lacks the feature of publishing professional articles.

WhatsApp

You probably don’t classify the messenger service WhatsApp among social networks at first. Nevertheless, it is officially counted among them. Although the focus is clearly on private communication, WhatsApp is also becoming increasingly popular with companies. They often use the chat service for customer service. For this purpose, there is a separate version called “WhatsApp Business”, which is specially designed for the needs of companies. Selling via WhatsApp is currently still legally critical, however, and advertising is not to be placed for the time being.

B2B in social media – Which platforms are best?

If you want to address your customers as a B2C company, you can access any social media platform. They are all very suitable for this, as they are all geared towards private individuals. However, the individual platforms differ depending on the target group, which is why you should carefully consider which of the social media channels you rely on.

For companies with a B2B focus, on the other hand, not all of them are suitable by a long shot. The best networks with which you can address your target group here are:

Social Media Channels at a glance

But these platforms aren’t the only ones that can be valuable to your business. You should always consider what is the best way to reach your target audience. Depending on your industry and target audience, specific platforms come into question. If you are active in the gaming sector, for example, you should also urgently look at Twitch. If you want to target active, athletic people as a sports brand, Runtastic is another service you should consider. So take the chance of this huge selection and also use a platform that is specifically tailored to your users. At best, expand your marketing measures to include more than just the classic social media services.

How To: Develop a Social Media Content Strategy

To engage your followers with the right content, you should come up with a strategy. A strategy means not only that you should think about how to create content, but also what content to create. In addition, it is important that you manage to make your content stand out among those of the competition and thus remain in the user’s memory.

There are some basics you should think about in advance:

To answer these questions in the best possible way, an editorial plan or a detailed content calendar will help you. In this you can plan exactly what will be published when, where and how. You can also use it to facilitate coordination in larger teams and additionally track responsibilities. Important points that an editorial plan should contain are:

  1. (Internal) delivery date
  2. (Planned) publication date
  3. Topic or (working) title of the content
  4. Assignment to campaign
  5. Medium on which the content is to be published
  6. Responsible person
  7. Status (e.g. in planning, in progress, completed)
Here’s what your social media editorial plan might look like

You can download the editorial plan template as a PDF or Exceimal file

In addition, you can, for example, specify a hashtag set with which you want to work. These hashtags will then become characteristic of your posts, showing followers which campaign the content they are viewing belongs to. In addition, you can achieve a wider reach through hashtags, since on Instagram, for example, users can follow hashtags in addition to a normal profile. If you have thought about all the points of the editorial plan and about your hashtag set, you already have a pretty clear path in mind that you want to follow with your content. You have found topics that you want to play out across your channels. But that’s not quite enough. There are several taboos that you should definitely keep in mind:

1. Taboo: Just post what comes to mind

This doesn’t mean that you should stop posting spontaneously, because this is what social media thrives on. It’s more about not posting just anything. Even with spontaneous postings you should have your target audience and your campaigns in mind. Ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Is what I want to post really interesting?
  2. Am I bombarding my target audience with irrelevant content?
  3. Does the content fit into my campaigns or is it “the odd one out”?

2. Taboo: Mass instead of class

Never, really never should you put quantity before quality! This doesn’t just apply to social media, of course, but to all areas where you publish content. Content is King is the universal rule that has been the supreme standard for ages. Your content needs to be relevant in order to appeal to your target audience. Because if one of your followers realizes that he is no longer interested in your postings, you will lose him.

3. Taboo: Play as many channels as possible

Sure, it’s tempting with the multitude of social media platforms to play as many channels as possible, but that’s not really goal-oriented. Every single channel needs a lot of attention and care. With too many, it’s easy to lose focus. In addition, the individual networks often have different focuses. Therefore, not every social media service necessarily fits your target group. Look at the channels carefully and choose the ones that are most appropriate for you.

Are you looking for assistance with creating your social media content?

As an experienced agency with many years of insights in the field of content creation, we not only specialize in website content, but also social content. In doing so, a target group-oriented approach and accurate content are our hobbyhorse. No matter which platform you want to use, we tailor posts to your needs!

With us, you gain reach!

Social Ads are exactly the right keyword here, because they are the perfect symbiosis of content and paid advertising. Normal, organic social posts have been continuously losing reach for years. Instead, users are primarily shown sponsored posts in their feed. This not only brings profit for the social networks, but can also play into your pockets! Social ads help you to address your target group more precisely and efficiently. This increases the performance of your posts and makes your content more visible. You want to know more? We’ll be happy to advise you free of charge and without obligation!

Secure a non-binding initial consultation now!

Content that suits you – Develop ideas and get inspired

There are all kinds of content you can use to engage and captivate your followers. Cool ideas include Behind the Scenes posts, which you can use to increase the transparency of your business. You can also work with Call to Actions to encourage your community to interact. Challenges or contests are also very popular and provide user-generated content.

That’s not enough inspiration for you? Here are more ideas that might help you find the right content for your business:

  1. Focus on special promotional days and holidays. Promote holidays that are fun, interesting, or specific to your industry. For example, October 29 is Internet Day.
  2. Go Live, with pleasure also planned and announced.
  3. Use trending hashtags like #throwbackthursday.
  4. Become an inspiration for others. Post ideas, DIYs and the like that inspire your followers and encourage them to share.
  5. Share helpful tips or checklists.
  6. Show your products/services in action.
    →→ Highlight the USPs of your products in particular.
  7. Take surveys. Find out more about your followers and their interests. You can plan your content accordingly.
  8. ErsCreate exciting infographics.
  9. Use humor and situationally appropriate memes.
  10. Ever thought about brand GIFs? They will attract the attention of your followers.
  11. Make your company human – introduce employees and give insights into their work tasks.
  12. Take your followers into your daily office life or that of a colleague. Do you have office animals? They also have an “office routine” that can be presented.
  13. Showcase your newsletter. Show your social media followers the benefits of subscribing to it.
  14. Highlight interesting content on your website.
  15. Share positive feedback or reviews when you’ve received them.
  16. Answer frequently asked questions or ask your followers what they always wanted to know and answer those questions.
  17. Teaser new products.
  18. Promote job openings on social media.
  19. Create mini-tutorials to help your followers.
  20. Use alternative content ideas (podcasts, interviews, etc.).
  21. Show your followers how sustainable you are and how sustainable your products are.
  22. Use social media to say thank you.

How can you measure the success of your social media marketing?

To measure the success of your campaigns, there are several metrics you can look at. Of course, what exactly “success” means to you depends on what your goals are. So you should always choose the KPIs that are necessary to meet your goals. Roughly, the key performance indicators can be divided into four different areas:

The picture shows the four main KPIs for measuring the success of social media content:
- Conversion Key Figures
- Customer Key Figures
- Engagement Key Figures
- Perception Key Figures
KPIs for measuring the success of social media content

Each metrics group has different KPIs that you should look at to analyze the area perfectly.

Awareness metrics

These metrics give you info about existing and potential audience. You should therefore analyze the following values in more detail:

The picture shows you the formula for calculating the audience growth rate.
Calculation of the audience growth rate

Engagement metrics

Engagement metrics show you how your followers are interacting with your content. These are the most relevant:

Conversion metrics

You can use these metrics to check the effectiveness of your campaigns.

The picture shows you the formula for calculating the social media conversion rate.
Berechnung der Social Media Conversion Rate

Customer metrics

These metrics reflect how active users feel about your business.

The picture shows the three categories of the Net Promoter Score and which score interval they have.

1. Critics: Score Interval from zero to six
2. Passive: Score Interval seven and eight
3. Promoter: Score Interval nine and ten
The three categories of the Net Promoter Score

Critics here give you the ratings you need to work on. They are dissatisfied with something or have a problem that you need to take a closer look at and fix. Passive or passive-satisfied users are intrinsically happy with the product or service, but are not as solid in their loyalty as promoters. This means that your passive users often skip to competitors. Promoters, on the other hand, are absolutely convinced of your company and your products/services. They are fully behind you and will also recommend these products to acquaintances and friends.

To sum it up!

Good content is important. You can reach your target audience particularly well via social media, as the chance of your content being shared and thus reaching many people is high. The prerequisite for this is, of course, that the content captivates followers in such a way that it encourages them to share it. You should therefore monitor the success of your content via the various KPIs in order to constantly optimize it.

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