Digital communication is evolving faster than ever before. When it comes to building a strong presence on social media, many organizations do not know how to keep up with the ever-changing digital landscape. The following social media strategies are proven to strengthen a digital footprint, regardless of whether you are in the early stages of developing a social strategy – or, through social, immersed in thought leadership and content marketing.
1. Develop Video Content … And Repurpose It
Key Consideration: How does this content add value to my audience?
Video content is taking over social media. Consistently, video-based social media platforms grow at a pace that other social channels simply cannot keep up with. From YouTube to TikTok, engagement spikes with video-centric content. Now, social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook are following suit, developing in-app features optimized for video creation and sharing.
Video content can take more time and energy to develop than a traditional Facebook post or Tweet, but there is an enormous upside to making the investment: Most social media platform’s algorithms favor video content, and users engage with it at much higher rates.
It is imperative that nonprofits, education companies, healthcare organizations – and all for-profit and not-for-profit entities – test video content with the aim of getting stakeholders to tune in.
Be sure to make the content about your stakeholders – not all about you. The rule of thumb here is add value, be of service, educate, and give them something memorable with no strings attached.
Step One: Film long format content in batches
- Film multiple long format videos at the same time and create a content repository which will save you time and alleviate pressure to always be coming up with new material
- Plan several different projects at once, collect the needed content, and film each project on a pre-scheduled day or over a weekend
- Shoot longer and share this content on platforms optimized for long format videos. Then, edit and repurpose on short format video channels
- Strip the audio from long format video to share as a podcast
Example: A tutorial or behind the scenes (BTS) footage can be broken up into mini tutorials or mini BTS series that can be posted as short form content such as teasers to the main video. This is especially helpful when you want to create suspense or anticipation leading up to the video release
Note: Long format videos are best suited for YouTube, Vimeo, Instagram (IGTV) + Facebook Live, and podcasts
Step Two: Edit videos to fit multiple social media platforms
- Use long format videos to generate shorter video clips
- Crop frame to optimize for each social media platform
- Cut length of video to fit social media platforms
- Some of the more popular and user-friendly editing tools for short videos (all are free!)
- Adobe Premiere Rush
Note: Short format videos are ideal for YouTube Shorts, Instagram Reels, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, and blogs
2. Establish Calls To Action
Key Consideration: What action do I want viewers to take?
As stated, social media content should be all about the audience – what they want and need to know. If your content doesn’t add value, you are just creating unwanted noise.
That said, a strong post on social media introduces a topic that is likely of interest to your audience and gives them an easy-to-follow next step to learn more. Many times, calls to action (CTAs) on social media take shape as outbound links to credible articles. These links may also take viewers to additional content, such as blog articles or earned media stories of interest that reside on your website. Social media, therefore, should help grow your website traffic.
Tools to organize multiple links in bio:
- Linktree (recommended, free and easy to use)
- Resource for additional link platforms: https://influencermarketinghub.com/link-in-bio-tools-instagram/
- Carrd (another free and easy to use one page site)
Adding a website link or email to your platform allows you to tag these sites in your posts and reference them in your captions. The easier it is for your audience to access your links, the more inclined they will be to explore your different channels. This type of CTA gives your followers the opportunity to learn more about your value proposition, your people, and your subject matter expertise.
3. Commit to your Social Media Platforms
Key Consideration: What social platforms do my stakeholders generally prefer?
- Pick platforms your audiences use – and commit to them
- Build your profile and content out completely on these channels, utilizing all features
- Feed posts
- Story posts
- IG Live
- Repurpose to feed posts
The great thing about starting with Instagram is that you have the ability to test features and characteristics similar to other platforms, such as YouTube and TikTok. The IGTV feature allows you to post more long form content; max. 15 minutes with uploading from a phone and 60 minutes from a larger device. This will give you an idea of how your content will be viewed on YouTube.
The Instagram Reels feature works almost in the same way as TikTok; short videos that can easily be sourced from long form content. This would be a good way to test your content on a TikTok-like platform. Instagram’s LIVE feature also allows you to interact with your followers in real time, like how you would on a streaming platform like Twitch.
Overall, the most important thing is consistency. The frequency in which you post, the message, hashtag use, and even aesthetics should satisfy followers, as well as the platforms’ algorithms. Although social media algorithms are in flux, such as with Google, being consistent in the above-mentioned ways will give your accounts the best chance for engagement and growth.
4. Use The Story Feature
Key Consideration: Why isn’t posting on social media enough?
Having a consistent posting schedule with followers who engage with your content is exactly what you need to grow your platform but it does not stop there. It is important to remember there are other features available to you on all platforms. One feature that is present on several different platforms is the “Story.”
“Stories” is a feature that appears on a multitude of social media platforms including Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Stories live on your platform for 24 hours (longer if you add them to Highlights, IG specific). They allow you to create original content as well as repost your own content and others.’ Stories are a great way to stay active on social media on days when you may not be posting and they are great for interacting with your audience.
How to be interactive with the story feature:
- Create a repeating series (e.g., Question of the Day)
- Use the different interactive Story surveys, polls, questions
- Host a “day in the life” social media Story takeover
- Go live and host a Q&A with your digital community
5. Stay Up to Date
Key Consideration: What social media resources should I use?
It is important to be current on the latest social media channels and trends. Below is a list of free social media resources that will guide you through the journey of developing and maintaining a strong digital presence.
- Sprout – Social Media Blog
- Hootsuite Social Media Strategy Blog
- Future Social – A Social Media Strategy Newsletter
- LinkedIn Learning Courses
We recommend consuming media actively rather than just passively. Save posts you like, jot ideas down when you see them, and reach out to accounts you follow. When you truly engage and analyze the content in your own social media feed, you will begin to see the connection between posts and the different techniques used to promote them.
Experimentation is key to a successful social media presence. In the end, your strategy or post may not go as planned or receive the engagement you had hoped for, and that is okay! Keep trying different tactics and take note of what you change and how those activities perform. Speak with people you follow and see what strategies have worked for them. Because every organization is different, there are infinite ways to grow your following. Through testing, you will build out your social media plan and tweak it as social platforms continue to evolve.