Note: This post, The Guide to Producing Shareable Content, is a guest post by Ryan Larson. You can learn more about Ryan at the end of this post.
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Content marketing. If you’ve never tried it, it may sound easy.
Rest assured, it isn’t.
You’ll go into it and strike out many times.
If you’re like me, you’ll start by posting low quality, unthemed pictures (not even videos) and then caption it with three words and a nice emoji to make it more fun.
Yup, and I failed.
I tried more and more tactics, but it remained flatlined.
I began to wonder why I couldn’t attract any views, likes, comments or conversions.
I ended up putting it all together and figuring out one thing.
I wasn’t making it shareable.
See, content can be entertaining, informative and educational.
However, the most successful content starts a conversation.
Basically, picture your content as a spiderweb and you are the spider.
Do the math. Get it?
You want the content to have a purpose, meaning, and value.
These are the essential drivers of conversation.
Think of it as you would in a real-life interaction.
No need to be robotic.
Heck, you can even use Siri to write your captions via your own voice if it helps!
Most content marketing takes place on social media, with my favorite being Instagram…
I wrote a Complete Guide to Instagram Content, too!
… but there are plenty of other forms such as blogging, for example.
Anyway, you want to know how to stir up a steady conversation with your content.
It’s quite simple and all it takes is a quick checklist.
Today, I’ll be providing you tips, but if you want to download the full checklist so you can save it to use before your next social post, click here.
Start by asking questions.
You want your audience to engage, right?
A great and borderline effortless step is to ask them a question.
Not only does this benefit your post and help it perform, but it also allows you to (a) better understand where your ideal audience is in terms of being educated on your niche, and (b) allows you to connect with your audience on an even closer level!
It’s a triple win and very easy to set up.
Just make sure it aligns with your post’s theme and flows well with the rest of your associated attributes such as your caption.
This can be similarly associated with asking questions, though it should go beyond that.
Basically, a call-to-action is asking the reader to go and perform a task that goes beyond just viewing what you have to say.
This is not exactly an easy feat to take on.
The viewer didn’t plan on taking these next steps, so why would they now do it once they have read your post?
You must go ahead and offer up something in exchange for their performed action.
For example, if you are asking them to follow you, go ahead and offer them a link for a 15% coupon messaged to them via DM.
It is that simple!
Though, it’s not always necessary to offer anything.
Sometimes, a catchy headline and reason to (for example) click a link or head to your profile page, can be enough.
So, when it comes to CTAs, it is up to you to do one of two (or both); offer something or provide value via your existing content, obligating the viewer to further advance their actions taken on your profile or content.
Follow social trends closely.
Entertainment rules the industry. And content is entertainment. Again, I’ll ask you to go ahead and do the math. Makes sense, right?
Anyway, a great example of a brand that took social media by storm extremely fast is Chubbies.
They used the common tactic of posting funny videos with text captions to capture attention.
By aggressively pushing out quality content, they managed to garner thousands of followers in a very short amount of time.
Did they use paid ads? Sure, but they didn’t have to.
The content was so well and creatively produced and distributed, that viewers felt obligated to share it as a sole piece, while not exactly associating it with the brand.
By this, I mean that viewers didn’t share the content because they just love the shorts so much.
They shared because the content was genuine, relatable, humorous and valuable.
Their laid back, funny and frat-boy style appealed well to their ideal audience, establishing their brand with this type of image.
Five minutes into viewing their content, and you can pretty much get a full grasp on what they do.
This is why it is also crucial to brand your content, which leads me to the next point.
Theme your content.
Creating consistency with your posts is key for long term sharing success.
Essentially, it comes down to a select few bits of elements.
These include colors, fonts, mood, and frequency. So, why is this so important?
Well, when you find an appealing content theme, the more and more your viewers (and new ones) see it, the more likely they are to share.
Consumers love being able to expect. While every piece of content should be unique and trigger new interest, the general look, feel and niche should stay steady.
Contest & Rewards
Giving back is a huge part of running a business.
It shows you care about your customers.
Though, contests and giveaways don’t have to be totally one-sided! You can actually get a little piece of the benefits yourself.
It’s a very easy tactic. So, put your raffle tickets away and listen up!
The formula is to offer something and revolve the steps around interacting with your business.
For example, I ran a giveaway a while back where I gave away some exclusive content to five people.
The steps included simply following three of my social media profiles and sharing at least one post with one friend.
Easy! It costed me nothing except ten minutes to send the content to the winners.
This is a bit more of an advanced tactic, due to the fact that it involves a bit more creativity, time and knowledge and ability to edit content.
What it is, is taking a one really big piece of content and chunking it up into multiple smaller pieces, then contextualizing it correctly for each platform.
The reason this promotes sharing is because of frequency.
If you have omnichannel followers, chances are they will see the same piece of content, but in a different format.
Familiarity is also a trigger for intrigue. Familiarity comes with frequency, as they go hand in hand.
For the third time, do the math. Bingo! Shareable content!
Content restructuring is complicated, time-consuming hard to master, and stressful.
It involves finding the right content, being able to edit, finding snippets, then contextualizing it.
It is an extremely useful tactic, however. So much so, that I included a solution to content repurposing in my content management startup, Snippit.
Being omnichannel present is crucial to your business’ success.
Repurposing existing content and posting on a schedule are both extremely important to your business’ time management and success.
In terms of Snippit, it will do that and more for you.
You can get the prototype and reserve a beta spot by entering your email here.
To Wrap Things Up
Word of mouth is one of the most effective forms of free marketing (a.ka., the best marketing).
Influencer marketing is one thing, but the influence of a shared piece of content from a friend, family member or partner is insanely organic!
It presents a natural social interaction where the recipient doesn’t feel like their being sold to by some money trap. It is perfect!
Get out there and create.
The best first steps are to try and test different tactics in different ways.
It’s the best way to learn how your audience will react to your content.
The end goal is more reach via social shares, expanded reach and fast conversions to further nurture the customer relationship.
Get the social post checklist!
Ryan Larson is a 19-year-old founder of a new content software company called Snippit. By following digital content marketing trends closely since the age of 14, he has built up a strong knowledge in this field and is now using this startup to make content marketing easier and more accessible to everyone and ver business.
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