Why do you need great content?
Google “ how often should I post on my Facebook page?” and you’ll get hundreds, if not thousands, of hits - all offering different advice on the best time and frequency to post. The truth is that posting regularly has a lot of benefits:
...and so many more benefits that the list would be endless!
As a Facebook Ads agency, we love working with businesses who create a lot of content; they not only understand what it is to align with their clients, but they tend to have a much more engaged and receptive audience, which makes our job of scaling sales and finding fresh customers far more exciting, and their results can be HUGE!
More often than not we’re approached by firms who have been burned by spending money on Facebook, Google, or other paid ads that haven’t generated the results they had been promised or hoped for. When we audit these accounts we quite often find that they’ve neglected their content on their facebook page and website. They can drive as much traffic as they want, but as soon as someone clicks to check them out there’s a dusty, unloved feed staring them in the face! Think about it for a moment; you’re more likely than not to check out a brand on Facebook or Instagram. Would you buy from them if they had posted occasionally and perhaps not for a while? No…. us either. It’s like sending eager buyers to an empty shop!
Truth is these companies just didn’t have the time, skills, or right people to do their content for them. Or so they thought!
In this post we’re going to show you how you can plan and create your content so you never need to worry about scrabbling together posts, panic posting weird memes or ‘left of field’ quotes, worrying that ‘it’ll have to do’. Instead, we’re going to show you how we plan out content for our advertising clients to that their results are better, stronger, and cheaper than ever before.
Here’s what you’re going to get:
Before the ‘What’ and the ‘How’ we need the ‘Why’ (always start with WHY?)!
Planning your content means you can tell a story your audience wants to engage with. The quality and frequency of your content has a direct correlation to the quality and size of your email list. The goal of all social media marketing is a vibrant, engaged, loyal following who will buy your products or service and become your greatest advocate. Yes, you can sell on social media but you also want to own the customer list. The only way to do this is via your email list, which is immune to algorithm changes!
What is a content plan?
Your content plan is the document that keeps you sane and your social media meaningful. It takes away the pain and lets you relax, confident that you are posting regularly and that it is content your audience cannot wait to engage with.
Building your content plan template.
Your content will fall in Four buckets;
When it comes to scheduling your content it is a good idea to get 90% of the content from the first three buckets. Promotion should be infrequent and sparse and only done when relevant through the content.
Map out your posting plan and the content using a framework like the one shown here:
You’ll notice that each of the social platforms has its own image or video link. This is to ensure that we’re not just replicating but repurposing content appropriately for where it will be shown.
You can get your copy of the worksheet here - to save an editable copy, go to file - make a copy - then save as your own (opens in Google Sheets).
Now for the ‘How?’
1 - The number 1 thing you need to do is be consistent. YOU are your most important customer. Block time out to create the content you want in your business and make sure that time is protected. 2-3 consecutive hours, 1 day per week.
2 - Find your content ideas.
Keep a note of interesting things, questions your customers ask, the things you read that are related to your subject, questions that come up in one of your competitor's feed, all of the peripheral bits of information that feed into your business.
I’m surgically attached to my iPhone so use the notes app for this. I have a page for each client we work with and just add to it as I see, hear, or think of things that are relevant. It’s simple but very effective as I can save images, words and voice recordings on the same note, which is then available on my desktop (gotta love apple!). Google Drive also works really well for this, too. This will quickly become your ‘go-to’ box of gems for your content topics!
3 - What’s happening in your business world? Is there an event, launch, programme or seasonal event that you need to be making reference to? Not the spurious ‘social media red sock day’ type events, but things that your customer will be alert to. Note these down.
4 - Ask your customer. If you already have customers, or you belong to groups where they hang out, ask them to fill in a short form telling you about what’s important to them and why. Allow them to write the answers themselves as the words they use will be really useful to you in creating the content. Keep this short and offer something in return; a bottle of champagne or an amazon voucher for example.
5 - Search as your customer would! Using what you know, head over to google and search for your services just like your customer. Think about what they needed to know before they made the decision that meant they needed you. What was it that led to their decision? That’s the search you need to do now. The magic of Google will bring up several similar search questions that are aligned with the same search you just did. I was working with a local business today who sell shutters for windows. This is what we found:
The suggestions below the search I entered give us several other topics to write about that we already know our customers are looking for online. To go a step back from this we might search like this:
Now we have 9 topics we can write about to introduce why shutters would be a good idea for your home!
Using these methods means you will find content that your customer is already searching for. This means your articles will be well received and promote your business without you having to be promotional about it. This kind of content will position you well within your market place as a trusted authority; the kind people seek out when they want to make a purchase.
When we’re working towards a launch or event the content we produce in the 6 weeks beforehand will all be geared to introducing the subject of the launch or event. For example, one of our clients is hosting a day long business workshop for over 100 ambitious business owners. Our content plan has looked something like this:
These events are run every quarter so the work we do afterwards will go to building the audience for the next edition, as well as generating positive engagement from attendees.
The last place to look for your content ideas (and certainly not the worst!) is your content! What has been well received?
What has had the most engagement?
What generated the most response directly?
The posts that have encouraged conversation and response are the ones to focus on and expand to new blogs / vlogs or other content form.
Now you have the keys to the castle - a fool-proof method for planning and creating content that your audience wants to consume and that will allow you to be consistent on social media.
Great content will grow your email list, make your ads budget go further and increase your revenue; your bank balance will thank you ;-)
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