Social media is a vital part of any omnichannel marketing plan, but there’s no point creating killer posts if they’re not seen by anybody.
Building a following is great, but they need to be engaged with your content and sharing it with their followers for your brand to reap the full benefits, and benefits are aplenty. There are over 1.6 billion global users on Facebook alone.
That’s a huge user base to connect with if you have the right tools and knowledge. Here are 10 tips to get more shares on social media.
1. Time Your Posts
All social networks are different and used at different times of the day. Here’s a breakdown of the best time to post some of the most popular social networks:
To get the most possible visibility, these are the base times you should be posting. It’s also a good idea to start posts an hour early so they start gaining steam by peak usage hours.
Live-tweeting or snapchatting during popular events is also a great way to get exposure for your brand. Oreo’s infamous 2013 “You can dunk in the dark” tweet gained it praise during the Super Bowl blackout, while Ellen DeGeneres partnered with Samsung for an Oscar selfie that’s still one of the most popular tweets ever.
With the right timing, you can transform your account from zero to hero in days.
2. Include Visuals
Social media posts with video and images simply get shared more. Pinterest, Instagram, Vine, and Snapchat are designed for visual sharing, but even on Facebook and Twitter, where text is commonly shared, video and photos perform better.
Visual content draws eyes to the written content you’ve included, so even if you’re sharing something educational or informational, charts and infographics help get the point across easier in a more visually stimulating way.
3. Solicit Shares
Don’t be afraid to ask your community of followers, fans, friends, and family to share your posts. We’ve all seen those pics of kids holding up cardboard signs for a school project – we share because they ask us to, even if it’s nothing new.
Be blunt and just ask your followers to share a post within the post. You’ll get your message just a little bit further that way.
4. Post Valuable Content
It should go without saying that people share content they find valuable. If all you’re doing is posting internal links and selling to people, they’re unlikely to share with their friends and more likely to just ignore or mute you.
Post outside news content you stumbled upon, podcasts you enjoy, videos that made you think, pictures that made you laugh, and general information about what you and your employees are into. This is how you connect with people.
Think of it as a blind date – you may be a million things, but you have a short time to show someone all these traits. You accomplish this by carefully selecting conversational topics until you build up trust. Your social media works the same way.
5. Run Contests
There are few better ways to motivate brand ambassadors than by giving them an incentive. Run giveaways for free products and services for reaching milestones and make your company’s social media success more social.
Everyone likes to win, and everyone from McDonald’s with its long-running Monopoly games to luxury carmaker Porsche runs contests to stir up consumer interest in the brand.
6. Use #Hashtags
Just like you would categorize and tag blog posts, social media posts often include hashtags for people to use.
#Please #Use #Hashtags #Sparingly and #DontMakeUnnecessarilyLongHashtags or you’re going to do more harm than good.
If you’re unsure how to use hashtags, pay close attention to how influencers on the site you’re targeting uses them and mimic what they do. Monkey see, monkey do – it’s #SoEasyMyGrandmaCanDoIt!
7. Participate in Trends
Every social network tracks trending topics, presenting them to users and developers to make them searchable. On Twitter, for example, it’s on your front page and can be sorted geographically. Facebook makes more personal recommendations, but trending topics can still be searched.
Third-party websites such as Buffer, Favstar, and TrendsMap also offer power trending tools that go beyond the vanilla app versions.
Although it may feel weird jumping on the bandwagon, it increases your visibility, as traffic tends to flow through these trending topics. If you have a comment that appeals to someone, you’ll increase engagement as you’re on the same side of a popular issue.
8. Ask for Help
The best way to engage fans and followers on social media isn’t to bog them down with information (that’s what blogs like this are for). Instead, give them a platform to shine on, and they gladly will.
Ask customers what you can do to improve, to choose between new product ideas, or to help resolve possible issues or decisions you’re having trouble tackling.
People are always happy to share their opinions, especially on social media, so by soliciting these opinions, you empower them to want to spread your message as far as their own.
9. Leverage Analytics
No marketing initiative can be proven effective or a failure without the data to back it up. Even if you follow all of these rules, you’re unlikely to see any change in your brand affinity, conversions, or sales without the data to back it up.
Check social media analytics daily to learn what messages were hits and which were misses. The old showbiz adage of giving audiences what they want definitely applies here. The more you feed into people’s perceptions, the more you’ll align with their personal story, and the more likely they are to share you with their friends.
10. Include a Call to Action
Every post should have some type of call to action, even those handwritten on a piece of cardboard held up by the side of the road.
If you want people to get fired up the same way you are, include a call to action that lets them know what they can do to help the movement.
The call to action in this particular post is to convince you to start elevating your social media game, but if you’re still unsure how to do it, we’re here to help. Feel free to add a comment with any questions you may have, and we’ll help work with you to strengthen your social media marketing efforts and get you back on track ASAP.