If you're on the internet with any regularity, you're surely familiar with the importance of social media marketing in the contemporary business landscape. However, a common mistake among business owners new to social media is that they only create posts that market their company to the exclusion of all other content. This presents a serious risk of alienating the target audience.
Therefore, one effective guideline to keep in mind when planning your social media content is the Pareto principle, more commonly known as the 80/20 rule: only 20 percent of your content should be marketing related, and the other 80 percent should be geared to provide useful information to your audience.
A careful balance of information and marketing
The reason for following the 80/20 rule is twofold. First, it's much more likely that someone will read your post if it purports to answer a need that they have. A mere marketing pitch doesn't have nearly the same ability to draw in the crowds.
Secondly, having an informative blog is a great way to set yourself up as an authority in your field. The more your audience trusts you to provide answers, the more likely they'll consider making use of your services and the higher you'll climb in search engine results.
What kind of informative content should you post?
When looking to fill out the informative side of your social media profile, there are a number of categories that are proven to draw in an enthusiastic audience response.
Because humans are visual creatures, posts that contain photos and videos tend to command the most attention. For example, Twitter found that on their platform, tweets with photos were 35 percent more likely to be retweeted, with videos, hashtags and quotes providing similarly significant boosts to engagement.
You also should ask yourself what problems your audience is looking to solve, and then post content with well-researched answers that provide value for the reader. This is a tried-and-true method of engagement that drastically increases the rate of conversion for those companies that make use of it.
Of course, you should always link back to your site in your posts to make it easy for your readers to find you. But be sure not to overdo it with the links, only inserting them where it makes sense to do so.
The ingredients for effective marketing posts
Once you've grabbed their attention with informative content, readers will be much more receptive to posts that tout your company's prowess in its field. This is where it's imperative to be familiar with your audience. Once you know just who makes up the majority of your readers, you'll be able to better tailor marketing material to their needs.
When searching how to best engage with your readers, questions to ask are:
- What are the demographics of your audience? For example, what are common age ranges and countries of residence?
- What other sites do they visit? What are other areas besides your field that your readers tend to engage with?
- Are there topics or categories of social media posts that draw more attention than others?
Social media is the powerhouse of digital marketing
As each year passes, it makes more sense for companies to take advantage of social media to pull ahead of their competition. With the power of social media, you can improve engagement, grow your base and improve retention. Explore what social media can do for your business by incorporating the 80/20 rule into your content calendar today.