Creating social media content your community connects with can be one of the hardest aspects of online marketing. Not only does it need to be engaging and interesting, but relevant and easy to consume.
To do this, you need to stop serving up the same old thing, and begin introducing the right types of social media content. This is content that will elevate your brand, build awareness, and increase engagement.
I’ve pulled together the 5 types of social media content you need to create, along with an infographic from Condiment Marketing. See how simple it is to tie content to your social media strategy and make a bigger impact today.
The 5 Types of Social Media Content You Need to Create
1. Visual Content (Media, Owned, Informational/Entertaining)
It isn’t surprising that image-rich content is one of the most shareable types of content. After all, it’s one of the longest standing forms of communication, dating back to the beginning of time.
Cavemen used images to tell their story while Egyptians would decorate entire rooms in vibrant color, guaranteeing a continuation of life.
Today, images are used on social media to tell a story, extend a vision, and leave an indelible mark in the mind of a consumer. And visual content has proven to create massive staying (and stickiness) power.
According to Buffer research, tweets that include pictures get 150% more retweets, 18 more clicks, and 89 more likes. Another interesting fact is that 93% of the most engaging posts on Facebook have images as opposed to links and updates. But don’t let that falsely lull you into thinking that as long as you post content with images, you’ll succeed. It takes more than a quick pic to grab the attention of your audience.
You need to use pictures that support the mission and purpose of your business. As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. That means the images you share must have a substantial impact on your customer, engaging both their heart and mind.
Not sure where to begin?
Look to your competition. Are they sharing creative visual content that their social media fans and followers eat up? If so, what can you learn from that?
Starbucks teaches us a valuable lesson, that oftentimes, less is more… especially when it comes to visual content.
2. Video / GIF / Expiring Content (Media, Real-Time, Promotional)
If you’re still in doubt whether video content is the future of social media marketing, all you have to do is blink. No matter the social network, a simple scroll through the newsfeed will inundate you with video content.
While video has quickly become an efficient and convenient means of communication, it’s also highly personal. It draws in viewers, allowing them to connect with you and your brand on a much more intimate level. And there are no signs that our consumption of video is slowing down.
Cisco predicts that by 2019, videos will account for 80% global internet traffic with social media included. According to data from Facebook, more than 50% of people who login to Facebook every day watch at least one video. And more than that, videos on Facebook increases engagement by 33%. Facebook is a great place to share your videos. A video communicates a message in a brief but memorable way.
The video that you decide to create must include the right words and actions. Not sure what that might be for your brand? Do your research. Look to your keywords and hashtags across each social channel.
What type of video is receiving the most engagement? Is it short form video, GIF’s, expiring content? (Instagram/ Snapchat Stories)
3. Infographic Content (Owned, Informational/Entertaining)
If you haven’t started using infographics yet, it’s time to get started. As it stands, the most shared content on social media is infographics mainly because it combines picture and text to tell a story. This works wonders considering that 40% of people respond better to visual information than just plain text.
A study from social network Digg Indicated that infographics on their site have increased by 250 times since 2007. Better yet, another study has shown that infographics are “liked” and shared on social media 3X more than other any other type of content.
That’s a lot of social media engagement you’re leaving on the table if you haven’t added them into your mix.
One of the best ways to use infographics is to present facts that educate your audience. For instance, if you have a clothing brand, you can create an infographic on ladies fashion trends over the years. If you’re a bakery, create an infographic displaying a variety of donuts.
Because, who doesn’t drool over donuts? 😊
To create a catchy infographic, you need a good designer or the creativity to work with tools like PiktoChart to create your own.
Here’s one I created over several years ago and it’s still a top performer on Pinterest. Don’t discount the ability for infographics to boost the shelf life of your content.
4. How-To / Educational Content (Owned, Broadcast, Informational/Entertaining)
Let’s agree, when a customer visits your website, chances are they’re looking for a solution to a problem. They’ve Googled a keyword or phrase that led them to your article, product, or service.
That’s the main reason why “how-to” posts are so popular. How-to articles can help boost search results when readers find it valuable. This in turn positions you as the go-to authority within that space. Partner these types of posts with social media and you have content gold.
These articles typically start with “How to…” and come as a result of a search where your reader wants to “know, do, or accomplish” something specific. Use this information to position your content for quick consumption on social media.
For example, you’re a Facebook Advertising Agency and write an article on, “How to Use Facebook Ads for Restaurants.” Your target audience turns to search, types in – “how do I create a Facebook Ad for my restaurant,” and voila – up pops your article if you’ve done your job in creating content that’s:
That title becomes your tweet, graphic headline for Instagram, or cover for a quick YouTube how-to video.
Use these “how-to” posts to highlight a problem, provide step-by-step instructions on how-to do something, and generally show them how to accomplish something they didn’t think possible.
These should be detailed, including images, diagrams, infographics, video instruction, and more to offer as much insight as possible.
5. Listicle Content (Informational/Entertaining, Text, Linking)
One particular type of content that has caught social media by storm are list-based posts. This type of content is meant to organize ideas and provide an answer in an easy to digest format.
It’s a good way to consolidate content, highlight your solution, and show your audience that you’re a useful resource. This article from Wordstream is a perfect example. They include exact steps to write an awesome blog post.
Then they take those steps and break them down in their social media post.
Here’s another (more entertaining) way to use quotes as a listicle within your social media posts.
But, don’t get the wrong impression. List posts shouldn’t be silly or frivolous, at least not most of the time. Unless of course, you’re Buzzfeed.
Instead, create lists that offer a valid solution through extensive research or proven processes.
And don’t forget the context of your social post. Your copy needs to be powerful and appealing to capture attention.
Ready to write one, but not sure how? Here’s how you get started in 5 easy steps. (you see what I did there) 😉
- State your hypotheses (what you believe the problem is) and your solution.
- Offer a strong and compelling reason why your solution is the best solution. What’s your take on the situation?
- Make your headline attention grabbing, but accurate.
- Include relevant images or GIF’s to engage your audience.
- Ask your audience’s opinion – get them involved in the conversation.
And one last important detail.
A study by a Journal of Consumer Research found that the human brain responds better to lists that end in zero. The “Top 10 Effect: lumping things into round-number groups and viewing everything outside them as inferior.”
Seems crazy, right? Crazy enough to make a big difference in the engagement and share-ability of your social media content.
Have you added these 5 types Of Social Media Content to your arsenal yet? If you still haven’t, you’re missing out some great conversation and engagement opportunities.
The more types of contents you employ, the more powerful your content becomes.
Which one will you choose in your next social media post?