The last two months have really flown by. I hope your week kicked off on a good note.
The last few post back in February we’ve covered some of the beef of visual branding as a business, learning more about brand identity, and understanding who our ideal client/audience are. That was a lot. However, you are well on your way to unlocking the secrets to seamless visual marketing for your brand.
I thought that we would spend March talking all things content. Yep! Diving right into that social element that everyone tends to roll their eyes at. Okay, there are a lot of us that don’t hate creating content and then there are a lot of you that don’t know where to start. This goes for what your going to talk about, when you’ll talk about it and the big one… “I don’t have any images to post.” I am hear to tell you that those are all false thoughts living in your head. I am going to give you some helpful tips and a beefy tools to help you post with confidence, and show out with your social media.
Let me ask you this. Do you have a content calendar? If so are you using it. High five’s for that! If you don’t, no worries you will be able to create one at the end of today's post. In order to stay true to your brand and keep your audience engaged, it’s important to plan ahead and be intentional with your social media posts. Being that person that post on the fly 98% of the time will not work for you in the long run. I promise you. Those accounts that you follow and feel like they have their “ish” together….. Is because they do. They are posting with intentionality and purpose. “How do I do that,” you ask? It’s simple Content Planning.
No we are not just talking a week here or there. Naw! Full planning of every week, month, and year. If you're thinking that’s not possible, she is lying to me. I promise you I am not messing with your emotions…... it’s possible.
Your content plan should mirror your editorial calendar, which is a cluster of events and happens within your business. If you don’t know what you are doing in your business then you may what to start there.
Here are my simple and easy steps to how I plan with my editorial calendar.
Break your year into quarters (4 sections of 3 months). This tends to work the best for most people. However, start with a breakdown that works for you, and that you can stick to.
Break your quarters into monthly sections.
Give each month a theme that is aligned with what is going on in our business.
Break your theme into mini sections in order to create shareable content around the subject. Plan per week.
If you are a blogger, create guides that you share with your audience, teach a master class, launching a new service, or you have a podcast. Guess what? You have your content ready to go! Now all that’s left to do is lock it down and create the images that will accompany your copy.
Here is what I do to create my visual content. I set aside one day a month sometimes two and dedicate it to creating the images I need for social media post. (Most times I use images from my photo shoot.) Yes it’s a lot of work, but it really helps me in the long run. I will create a list of all the post I want, create a shot list, and rock out to music in my living room. Then I simply take a Sunday afternoon to write out my captions that match the upcoming post. I have been doing this for a while.
If your are not able to do this or simply don’t have the time. Hire a photographer to take your images for you. Less hassle and you can focus more of your time planning out what you want to say.
Tip: This does not always work as planned. Learn to leave room for days where you want to switch things up, post on the fly, or you get super busy- and you will. However, try sticking to your plan as much as you can.
Now it’s time to get Social! Here are 7 important themes that I personally incorporate/follow and believe are critical in using your content to grow your community, increase your engagement, and achieve your goals.
Also, I’ve created a “Social Media Kick Start to 35 Days of Content” Planner to help you get started and give you inspiration along with these tips.
1. Get Personal - People Buy From People
For your followers to feel connected to you, they want to get to know you. Sharing personal stories or fun facts allows your followers to get a glimpse into who you are. (Do this 2-3 times a week)
2. Ask A Question - The Point of Social Media is to…..? BE SOCIAL !
Think of your feed as a presentation. Are you going to be that boring presenter and just talk at your audience the whole time (imagines people falling asleep).? No! You are going to ask your followers questions on a regular basis! This creates conversation.
Tip: Make sure you are using a call to action in your posts. Ask them to comment if they agree or give their opinion. If you are posting about a blog leave them hanging and invite them to join the party over on the blog. The idea is to create the opportunity for them to interact with you. This will allow them to feel heard.
3. Your An Expert - Act Like It!
You’ve identified your niche and people want to hear your knowledge. Share some “pro tips” that your audience will find useful or interesting. Do know what they want? Post a quick poll or question to get the party started. We want our followers to convert into buyers. Yes! (Nod your head.) Well this is how they do so. Be the person they have to learn from. Share the Tips! Just give all the tips. Okay! Not all of them.
4. Get Social
Like I said….It’s called social media for a reason. Make sure to stay active in your community by tagging them and showing your appreciation! Run polls in your stories (YES USE YOUR STORIES PEOPLE). Use what you learned to create more content topics. Engage with other posts. Spend time going into those hashtags you are using and like/comment. Keep your comments real. SHOW UP!
5. Get Creative
Run a contest or ask your followers to fill in the blanks. Do a “caption this” post or set up a giveaway that is relevant to your niche.
6. Inspire - Remember It’s Not All About You !
Use your knowledge and creativity to inspire and motivate others. People will gravitate towards an account that inspires them whether it's to try a new recipe, be more positive, or plan a trip. Trust me… I just made a few purchases as I was inspired to buy them. HA!!!
Tip: Be Genuine
7. Promote Yourself - HELL YES!! We Call That MARKETING.
Promoting yourself is extremely important to increasing your engagement and growing your business. Your Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or whatever your social medium of choice. This is a perfect tool for promoting your hard work whether its a blog post, product, or achievement. It may feel uncomfortable at first, but don’t be afraid to throw out a #shamelessplug every once in awhile. Who else will hype you.…. if you don’t.
Lastly! Stay true, be real, and don’t give up. Growth takes time. I am confident that with these tools and a positive attitude you will rock your social media.
Make sure to grab my “Social Media Kick Start Calendar to 35 Days of Content” Planner . Make sure to tag #brandedbosssocial so that I can cheer you on and see who your killing your social media.
Happy Posting Socials!