Article by Lisa-Marie Nelson 06.01.16
(follow me @PRBirdie)
If you’re reading this post then you understand creating and sharing quality content can really elevate your business.
Chances are you’re probably stuck for ideas too, but that’s okay, content marketing is hard.
You may be surprised to know even professional communicators suffer from writers’ block from time to time.
It can be particularly hard to remain creative and gain cut-through against an ever-growing fast-paced torrent of social media content.
As a professional communicator who hates the fluffy stuff, I believe in order to add value you must be strategic.
That doesn’t mean you have to create everything yourself or spend an arm or a leg on development – curating content can be just as good if not better.
The fact is, sometimes we need a little help to get our creative juices flowing. And, the quickest and easiest way is to take inspiration from others.
To help with content planning brain fog, I’ve mixed a few of my own suggestions with some from Social Media Content Ideas to get you started.
In no particular order, here are some of my favourite quick wins:
#1 Fill in the blanks
Get people to show their creative side. Do it just for fun or run a competition to help promote a new product or service.
Figure 1 OREO Cookie fill in the blank Twitter contest
#2 Promote social networks
Don’t be shy, let people know where else they can find you and start building a more complete customer profile.
#3 Feel good quotes
Make people smile. Share a feel good quote on a Monday or the mid-week hump and ask people to like, RT or share the love.
Figure 2 Feel good quote from Mandy Hale on Instagram
#4 Promote your events
Tell people about events you’re hosting, attending or sponsoring. Include relevant hashtags, stand numbers and @ mention the organiser for RTs/shares.
#5 Fan of the week
Celebrate your audience and give a fan a shout out! If someone has shared their experience with you use it tell others and thank them at the same time.
Figure 3 Skittles “Rainbro” fan profile on Facebook
#6 Share your successes
Keep your audience up-to-date with your successes it aids transparency and builds trust. Post business results, awards, review and client wins.
#7 Use seasonal hooks
There’s an awareness day for almost everything so make the most of the hype. Be selective; consider the audience and the value you can add.
Figure 4 NFU Mutual teamed up with AGA to help promote Breakfast Week
#8 Facts and insights
Help people get to know you better. Share an interesting piece of your history, unknown fact or share quirky customer stories.
#9 Photo of the day
They say a picture is worth 1,000 words so use it to your advantage. Post a captivating picture illustrating what you do or re-post one from a customer.
Figure 5 Farmers’ Weekly photography competition entry
#10 And our survey says…
Are you really listening to your customers? Are you using the 10 best survey questions to ask your customers?
#11 Offers and promotions
Offer a freebie or discount. Why not work with another brand which complements your offering and will help grow your audience?
Figure 6 NFU Mutual teamed up with Emma Cornes to giveaway one of her bags
#12 Post job openings
A cheap way to promote your growth and recruit. Your followers have a vested interest in your businesses so they could well aspire to work for it too!
#13 It’s for charity mate!
If you support a charity tell people about it; chances are you picked a cause that’s close to your customers’ hearts so they’ll be interested to know.
Figure 7 Jess Glynne’s Take Me Home has been named as this year’s official single for BBC Children in Need.
#14 Call to action
Don’t just broadcast information; tell people what you want them to do with it. It’s perfectly acceptable to ask for a RT, like or share and helps with reach and engagement.
#15 Read all about it
If you’ve worked hard to get good press shout about it. Share news stories and @ mention the publication or website. If you have a press centre drive traffic to it.
Figure 8 Coverage in The Independent: The John Lewis Christmas advert 2015.
That’s all folks! I hope you’ve scribbled down a few nuggets to try out. If you found it useful please like and share it to help others struggling for inspiration.
Let me know what you of this article or share your own words of wisdom by connecting with me on Twitter using @PRBirdie or find me on LinkedIn.
Happy content planning!