Twitter. YouTube. Facebook. Instagram. These are just a few of the many social media platforms available for entrepreneurs and influencers alike to build a social media presence and following. Bu you may be asking how to write for social media.
It’s a critical question to answer.
Because more than any other marketing strategy, social media writing and content can build brand awareness, establish a niche, and increase sales.
In this post, we’ll take a close look at your social media strategy and how to write well for social media. Among other things, we’ll cover the following:
- Some of the differences between traditional marketing and social media marketing
- The mechanics of writing well for social media marketing
- Social media platforms and channels
- Content calendars
- How to build on the content marketing strategy you already have
Why social media requires a different style of writing
Unlike website copy, social media writing requires a unique writing style.
How does social media differ from traditional media?
Clearly, both traditional marketing and social media marketing have their place in any company’s content strategy.
For decades, most businesses relied on traditional marketing to sell their products and services. Generally, this meant paying for advertising on television, radio, or in print (e.g. newspapers, fliers, billboards, etc.).
But traditional marketing is expensive, and it has a limited reach.
Social media platforms and networks, on the other hand, connect people from all around the world.
They also provide low- or no-cost advertising. A social media platform like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or YouTube is free to set up and use. And even the most valued platform, Facebook, offers low-cost paid advertising.
At the heart of traditional marketing is the “hard sell.”
That doesn’t work for social media marketing.
Online digital marketing is all about connection and sharing. For it to work, you must establish a social presence on a social media channel or platform like Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube to build brand awareness and trust.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of social media writing?
For copywriters and others, writing social media copy can be both liberating and challenging.
Social media copywriters might engage in microblogging (Twitter), social networking (Facebook), or video sharing (YouTube). Each one of these social media platforms requires a different style of writing.
One significant advantage is that tone for social media writing is informal and friendly. Use of slang, humor, and (gasp!) even incorrect grammar at times is perfectly fine.
Although the necessary writing skills (writing, editing, proofreading) are still the same, there is an art to great social media copywriting.
Writing compelling social media posts requires finding a balance between being social and fun, yet still getting a brand’s message across.
One disadvantage is that it’s almost impossible to stand out from the crowd. Having a specific niche can help.
Why does social media require a unique writing style?
Whether you are writing a book or a blog post, the goal is to communicate with your audience.
It’s the same on social media. But how you communicate changes depending on the platform you choose. There are several different types of social media platforms that allow people to connect in distinct ways. How you write social media posts depends on the type of platform you are writing for.
Unlike traditional media, social media appeals to millennials and younger people who want to connect with others. They want to create networks, share information and social ideas, and engage with others as a community.
To build brand awareness, it is critical to adjust your writing style to fit the unique social media audience. For example, your writing cannot extol your business success—it must foster a sense of community and connection instead.
Importance of effective social media writing
Developing effective social media writing skills is essential not only for boosting your sales but also for creating and managing your company’s public image.
How does social media improve sales?
By allowing a business to directly interact with its customers and build relationships, social media can significantly improve a company’s sales.
The more shares and likes a brand gets, the more sales increase.
How does social media enhance your brand image and business?
Because social media encourages sharing and community, it provides a unique opportunity to develop and promote your brand and brand image. Well-written content makes people want to buy from you.
How do modern consumers use social media to help make purchasing decisions?
According to a recent report by Deloitte, people research online before they buy products—and they buy online, too. Deloitte says that consumers who use social media at some point during their shopping journey are four times more likely to spend more on purchases than those who do not.
Mechanics of writing for social media
In today’s world, almost every business needs to develop a social media presence to connect with its audience. But how, exactly, do you write effective social media posts?
How do you write a creative social media post?
Good social media writing and a good social media manager begin with knowing and understanding your audience and the platform you are writing for.
Since each platform is unique, how you write depends on the platform. For example, Facebook posts can be all text. YouTube posts are all visual. Twitter content (a tweet) must stay within the character limits.
What makes a social media post successful?
No single thing makes a post successful. But there are some general guidelines for writing successful posts. Here are a few.
1. Understand your audience.
The more helpful and relevant your posts are, the more success you will have.
Only write and share posts that your followers find helpful and care about.
2. Keep it short!
When writing for social media, shorter is better. Paragraphs can be one or two sentences long.
Or just one word.
3. Talk the talk.
According to social media policy, a successful post speaks in the language of its audience.
So, for example, if you are writing for gym rats, you’re talkin’ heavy squats, splits, and bro science, dude.
If your audience is more sophisticated, use the words they would use to express themselves.
4. Add visuals that work with your text.
Having visuals for your posts is a must. But it’s important that your copy and visuals work together to present a cohesive brand image.
Social media posts might get thousands of views per day. So before you publish, take the time to have your content proofread and edited.
Why does it matter if you write well on social media?
To reach millions of people and turn them into customers, it is essential that you write well on social media. Social media writing might sound easy, but knowing what will connect with your audience and gain likes and shares takes significant research and time.
How to research your audience
To have a successful social media marketing campaign, you will need to do research to get to know your audience better.
You can use social listening tools or other research tools like Hootsuite, Google Alerts, and Talkwalker to better understand your target audience.
How do you determine what message you want to send to your audience with social media marketing?
Before you launch an effective social media campaign, you need to know the message you want to send.
To decide what your message is, think about how your product or service helps your followers solve their problems.
Because on social media it’s all about them, not you.
How do you narrow your audience on social media?
Narrowing down your target audience on social media can be done by developing a buyer persona. To do this, find out the demographics of your ideal buyer:
- What age are they?
- Are they married?
- What’s their income?
You can also ask your current customers about their social media habits to find out where your target audience spends their time on social media.
How do you research the online habits of your target audience?
The social media channels you post on can provide analytics regarding your target audience’s online habits and preferences.
Other resources, like the Pew Research Center, provide helpful information regarding online users, including what social media platforms attract different age groups.
How to research your social media topics
Once you know who your target audience is, it’s time to figure out what social media topics are most important to them.
If you truly understand your buyer’s challenges and problems, it’s far easier to find meaningful topics to write about.
You can search for topic ideas on Google, or set up Google Alerts to find topics to write about.
Industry newsletters or blogs can also provide relevant and interesting topics.
What should you avoid posting on social media?
Posting engaging social media content is critical. But it is also important to know what not to post on social channels.
Here are a few things not to do in your social media posts.
- Don’t be negative or offensive. Avoid offensive language, tone, or opinions. Posts should be positive. Remember, you are trying to connect to potential customers—not drive them away.
- Don’t post misleading information. The nature of social media makes it easy to post something in a split second without thinking it through—and for potentially misleading information to spread instantly. If you exaggerate or mislead your followers, it will negatively impact your business.
- Don’t post content that has not been proofread. Always have each post you write proofread. Grammatical mistakes, punctuation errors, and misspelled words make you look unprofessional and sloppy.
How do you successfully engage your audience through purposeful social media topics?
The secret to successful social media marketing is consistently posting quality content.
When you create and post quality content, it encourages your followers to share and connect.
To engage your audience, ask questions. Give tips. Tell stories. Make it fun.
Start a conversation.
How can you determine what your target audience would value learning more about?
How do you figure out what your potential customers want to learn more about?
It’s pretty easy, really.
After you post, read the comments. This, along with data from the channels you post on, will tell you what your followers want to know more about.
The benefits of creating a content calendar for your social media writing
At the heart of any well-thought-out social media marketing strategy is a content calendar.
A content calendar (or editorial calendar) is a working document that most social media managers use to schedule upcoming content.
Content calendars can be the following:
- Printed calendars
- Excel spreadsheets or Google Sheets
- Online social media management tools
Having a well-maintained content calendar promotes teamwork, keeps you organized, and helps you post consistently.
It also allows you to coordinate your social media marketing with your website content and email marketing content.
Why is it necessary to include product pictures on your social media calendar?
Be sure to include product pictures on your social media calendar because they communicate the details of your product to your target audience.
How do you organize social media content through a content calendar?
To organize your editorial calendar, begin with deciding which topics to write about.
- Consider your goals. Think about what your goal is for each piece of content you intend to post on each channel. Is it to educate? Entertain?
- Schedule it. Next, come up with deadlines for creating, proofreading, editing, and posting each piece of content.
Scheduling your posts and relevant deadlines helps you to post consistently.
Why is it important to include contests or giveaways on your social media calendar?
Nothing excites your audience more than free stuff! Contests and giveaways help keep your content fresh and your audience engaged.
Technology to help distribute your social media posts
After writing your social media content, you need to distribute it. But that doesn’t just mean making a post and walking away—you want to use specialized tools to promote your posts and help drive sales, too.
How can technology help you increase traffic to your website through social networks?
If it’s reaching the right customers and getting views and clicks, social media can act as the top of your sales funnel. The right social media tools increase sales by moving followers from your social posts to your landing page or website and through your sales funnel to become customers.
What technology can help you promote your social media posts?
Technology can help you analyze what is and is not working for you on social media. It can also help you distribute your posts on time.
Some technology you may find helpful to promote and distribute your posts includes the following:
- Analytics. Social media listening and data analytics tools, such as Google Analytics, help you promote your posts by providing insight into what topics your audience wants to see.
- Mobile optimization. Apps like Adobe Spark allow you to easily create graphics and short videos that are optimized for mobile viewing.
- Automation. Tools like Revealbot automate the process of promoting posts on platforms like Facebook and Instagram or other social media sites. They can automatically promote posts that reach a certain level of engagement.
What technology allows you to distribute social media content?
There are many tools to help distribute your social media content. Here are just three.
Hootsuite is a comprehensive social distribution platform. It helps you manage and publish to all major social networks, including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and others. You can also distribute email content to social networks like YouTube, MailChimp, and Salesforce.
HubSpot helps you manage, monitor, schedule, and publish to your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social networks and lets you see whether your tweets or posts are driving leads.
Buffer helps you schedule social media posts. You can schedule your posts or “buffer” them to have them spread out during the day automatically.
How to build upon your existing social media content
If you have writer’s block or your content isn’t getting much traction, think about building on content you already have.
What strategies can you use to expand existing social media content in new directions?
Think about taking your existing content in new directions.
For example, maybe you could add visuals to your content to promote social media engagement.
Or maybe you can use what you already have to create resources like these:
- Online courses
Don’t be afraid to experiment. Changing things up keeps your content fresh and engaging.
What should you ask fans and followers to do after engaging with your content?
Social media marketing for businesses is a marketing strategy. So don’t be afraid to ask your followers to share, like, comment, and subscribe if they appreciate your content.
How do you use the demographics, interests, and behaviors of your existing followers?
Remember what we said above about finding a niche and getting to know your buyer persona and target audience?
Well, here it is again.
Use the demographic, interests, and buying behaviors of your existing followers to develop engaging content and determine which social platforms to use.
Bringing it all together
A social media marketing strategy takes time to develop. But if you follow the advice in this post, you will be well on your way to building your social content—and your brand—and increasing your sales.
And heck, you might even have fun in the process!
So jump in!
And if you need help along the way as you learn how to write for social media, contact us. From social media content writing services to search engine optimized web copy, Elite Editing has your business covered. Let us know what your business needs—because we have a team ready to deliver.