Jim Collins said the Good is the enemy of the Great, but nothing at all is the enemy of the Good!

In other words, if you don’t have any social media content, it’s pretty important to create some good stuff first!

The seemingly dispersed and convoluted social media world can lead a lot of people into stress when they think about how to create good social media content for their profiles.

Below we explore 6 steps you can undertake to leapfrog the competition into the world of good social media content in Australia.

Here Are The 6 Steps to Follow for Great Content

Step 1 – Work out your audience.
Step 2 – Social media keyword research.
Step 3 – Content concept discovery.
Step 4 – Test out various networks.
Step 5Write your content schedule.
Step 6 – Review your metrics.
Take Action – How to create good content for social media.

Read on to learn how to make your 6 steps to good content for social media.

1. Work out your audience

This isn’t about building your audience, it’s about working out who your audience is.

Working out who they are, where they are and what they want. Of course the next logical step is then why they should be interested, but that comes later.

The irony about this step is that so many people leave it out. How on earth can you know what to write, if you don’t know who you’re writing it to?

No doubt you’ve already done some form of target audience identification work through-out either your business plan or your marketing strategy development. So you know a bit about them.

What you need to know now is, what does that audience look like on social media? What platforms do they frequent? What times are they there? What’s the demographic representation? What content do they most commonly engage with?

Platforms can typically be any of the following:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • Pinterest
  • SnapChat
  • Houzz
  • and the list goes on…

Times to post can vary, primarily you need to review:

  • The typical lifestyle and habits of your audience
  • When they appear to have been most active on competitor pages
  • The time at which a customer is most likely to have your product in mind

Demographic representation gets interesting. Look for:

  • The demographics generally on a platform
  • Age and gender of engaged audience on competitor profiles
  • Hardware and format, are people using PC’s, mobiles or tablets.

Engaged content for the audience means:

  • Type and style of content that illicits most reactions.
  • Spread of content styles that gets best reactions.
  • Visual styles and content headlines.

This all sounds great, but how on earth do you find this information out without actually doing it?

There’s a raft of different tools around that you can use based either on your own data or on competitor data to get the view you need. Such platforms include:

  • Sprout Social gives an excellent view of your own profiles, allows you to review elements of your competitors profiles and also has a neat feature that lets you discover what’s going on on the platforms without actually being on them yourself!
  • BuzzSumo allows you to compare certain Facebook fan pages and get insights into how their posts perform in comparison to each other.
  • Social Mention displays a massive array of data based either on keywords and hashtags or on competitor behaviour and brand mentions.
  • BirdSong Analytics goes deeply into your competitors Facebook page, pulling out their content and identifying the best performing posts, time of day, triggers, interactions and audience profiles.

Ask yourself “Does the data make it look like my audience actually care about what’s being posted?“. That question being cast over all the data that is presented from these platforms will immediately point you to which content is most likely the best for your audience.

Related Article: How to choose the right social media platform for your business in 2018

2. Social media keyword research

Keywords are not just for SEO!

Although the keywords you’re looking for on Social Media are for a different purpose.

When you’re looking for SEO keywords, you’re looking for the type of key words and phrases that people type in to get to a certain website.

Social Media keywords are different, you’re looking for two things:

  1. What keywords people react to
  2. What keywords are in the common lexicon

Using the tools listed above, or simply the platforms themselves, you can start to form a picture of the 2 points above, what people react to and what’s in the common lexicon.

This data then forms two key parts of your content strategy.

  1. The sort of language you’re going to use in your posts
  2. What concepts and topics you’re going to post about

It’s important to take this research for what it is, social media language. This doesn’t mean you should way from your brands core values or talk about different things on social media from that which you would in real life. Rather, you should be looking to use the words, hash-tags, emojis and appropriate slang within your content and within your brands language.

Related Article: How to make your social media content go viral

3. Content concept discovery

So now you know the sort of language to use and who’s going to be reacting to it – time to get some ideas!

By now you’ve probably got the sense that social media is absolutely awash with content and this can make it very difficult to determine what’s good and what isn’t.

How do you come up with your own content that’s genuine, original and eye catching?

Whilst trial and error is one way, another is to explore the concepts and ideas others are posting about.

Platforms you can find content inspiration from:

  • Social Media Platforms: Sprout Socials discovery mode is an excellent way of exploring what other people are posting.
  • Market Research: AnswerCrowd is a great way to generate ideas for your concept using traditional market research methodologies, simply online!
  • News Monitoring: Google News is an example of a platform where you can see what’s being talked about online, it’s a great source of current, relevant and interesting topics.

Obviously you can’t copy people flat out, but inspiration is often hard to come by so digging some up from a variety of sources is not a bad thing!

Related Article: What would make your social media account different?

4. Test out various networks

Once upon a time the recommendation was to only go for one or two social networks and that’ll suffice. These days the answer is very different.

Most brands have expanded way out past 1 or 2 into basically ‘all’. All of course isn’t the end game, because not all your platforms will perform well – you just can’t start out intending only to go to 1 or 2.

By now you’ve done your research into your audience so you have a pretty good feel on where your audience will be and where they won’t be.

It’s time to get real and start doing things. Setup profiles on all the main platforms, get started, start posting your content concepts from above.

Treat them all as equals. Work hard on them all. Pretty quickly the cream will rise too the top and you’ll know where your budget and time should be allocated.

It’s important not to just drop your new social media profiles, the under performing ones, you should instead allocate appropriate time to them and alter the way you use them, perhaps minimising posts or even changing the content style completely.

Related Article: The Aston Guide to Instagram Marketing

5. Write your content schedule

Also otherwise know as a content calendar or content plan, this is the diary of all your social media posts.

Sure, you could have them scheduled into a platform like Hootsuite, but do you think that’ll make it easy to manage your drafts? Nope.

Your content schedule will initially include just the concept ideas for each day, and then as time goes by you’ll start to complete each post, as if it were a series of editorial drafts. The closer the post is to the current day, the more completed it should be.

Thus your content schedule will be a live document, forever changing, never set in stone.

Utilise all the content concepts you have created above and add them in progressively over time, developing each as time goes by.

Don’t forget the holidays and public events! These should factor into your schedule too!

Related Article: Social Media Content Schedule Template

6. Review your metrics

Social Media platforms are really good at giving you excellent metrics these days. They can pile out the numbers at a rate higher than you can consume them.

Unfortunately, that means that a large majority of the metrics published don’t ever get used, or perhaps actually aren’t that useful themselves. This doesn’t mean you should ignore them though.

The most common metrics that are considered useful are:

  • Reach: How many people did your content go out to.
  • Impressions: How many people (eyeballs) saw your content.
  • Engagements: How many people took action on your content in some way.

Using these metrics, you can make informed and valuable decisions on where to invest your effort and how much investment should be made on each type of post. It quickly becomes apparent which content is best for you and which isn’t.

Most of the metrics you need are visible in the platforms themselves, but often better visualisation is possible when you’re using a third party reporting platform like Sprout Social.

Related Article: Do I really need to monitor my social media standing?

Take Action

So there it is, easy right? Just take action!

Not so – as there is an awful lot of work involved in all of this. It’s our recommendation that you tackle this the same way you would eating an elephant – one bite at a time.

The rewards are certainly there to be had, with excellent background data, great, informed ideas and a continual review of your metrics, you’ll have one heck of a social media profile and good, if not great, content!