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5 steps to writing an awesome social media post

There are many good reasons to invest time and energy into your business’ social media channels.

Consumers now expect any credible business to be active on social media, so a steady stream of great content will boost your credibility. Social media can also massively boost your reach, going beyond your database and out to a world of 5 billion users.

And perhaps most importantly, social media is a great informal space where you can showcase your brand personality, build authentic connections and initiate two-way conversations.

But where to start? There’s so much information (and misinformation) out there that many would-be posters suffer from analysis paralysis.
So let’s get back to basics. What are the fundamental steps to writing a high-engagement post?

Step 1
Get to know your target reader

Many businesses make the mistake of writing about what they want to write about, not what their readers want to read about. But your reader should be the centre of all your content.

So first you need to figure out who your ideal reader is. You may have many kinds of followers but who is it you really want to connect with? Who is going to be your best customer? The best advocate for your brand? Don’t try to talk to everyone!

When you’ve Identified your target reader, invest some time in getting to know them. Go beyond their biodata to their challenges, fears, motivations, dreams and desires. The better you know them and their emotional buttons, the easier it will become to write posts they actually want to read!

Step 2
Gather ideas

Now start thinking about content your target reader will love. Look for ideas that genuinely add value. Aim to inspire, entertain or educate.

If in doubt, there are certain types of content that never fail to get a great response. Here are a few:

Secrets and behind the scenes
Posting for an events company? Give followers a glimpse into what goes into an event. Keep it short and sweet – perhaps a mantra your team says out loud before a gig, or the ultimate event checklist. These posts appeal to readers’ natural curiosity but also showcase your values and uber efficient work processes.

Myths busted
Posting for a skincare brand? Myth: foundation clogs your skin. Share the true facts. Your readers will love knowing better!

Useful information and hacks
Posting for a hotel brand? Inspire your readers and save them time by sharing a monthly event calendar for your city.

No matter what business you’re in, showcasing your people is a sure win. From the cleaner to the CEO, everyone has a story, and people stories are the reason readers flock to social media in the first place!

Step 3
Check your language

Great writing is clear and concise. And this is particularly true on social media where you reader is looking for instant gratification.

So get straight to the point and stick to plain and simple language. Excess detail, long sentences, complex vocabulary and jargon have no place in social media posts. Instead aim for a short, punchy sentences, everyday words and a conversational tone.

Step 4
Encourage interactivity

The gold standard of social media is an active and engaged community of followers. Posting quality content is a great start but it’s not the end. It’s important to encourage interactivity.

Luckily, there are some simple ways to do this, starting with inviting comments and including a call to action. Every post should encourage further engagement. Do you want your reader to visit your blog, like or share a post? Then tell them!

Some types of content naturally support interaction. Think contests, surveys and user-generated content. Clothing brand? Ask your followers what colour they want your iconic dress in next? Cruise company? Ask followers to post fave photos from their trip, with the chance to win a prize of course!

Step 5
Try, tweak, try again

Follow the first four steps and you have a very good chance of creating content your followers love. But you never really know until you try! So get posting. See which posts get high engagement and which don’t. Learn the lessons, tweak your approach and try again.

Don’t wait until you’ve learnt everything there is to know and have created a pipeline of ‘perfect posts’. Perfection is the enemy of progress!

So just get started, and happy posting!