“2019 is the year for video.”
“Website-based content is the only way to build a committed audience.”
In the world of social media marketing, we like big, blanket statements because they’re easy answers and easy answers promise a way to cut through complexities, offering a quick way to get to whatever works. Creating great marketing on top of navigating social media platforms on top of being captive to algorithms on top of trying to hack advertising can be a bit…much.
But posting memes? Only doing video? Writing blog posts?
THE HOLY GRAIL.
Hallelujah! Simple, effective, everybody’s doing it and it seems to work.
While putting all the marketing into one content basket might be appealing, creating a more diverse content offering might be a better way to reach more people because not everyone consumes social media in the same way.
Different Strokes for Different Folks
“Hey, I gotta show you this thing I saw on YouTube…” says the one friend everyone has who will drag into an nearly eternal rabbit of “funny” video after video until you run out of courtesy laughs and make an excuse to leave the room.
If it’s in a video on the internet, they’ve seen it, and they will click through the “recommended videos” sidebar until their clicking finger bleeds.
Video-based content makes sense for people like this because there’s something inside their brain compelling them to interact with your business via video. I love video for its ability to connect the humans behind a business to the humans in front of business, for its ability to communicate care and personality, and for its potentially high reach and value. But for people who use social media in a way that is quick, nearly-instant and almost mindless scrolling, watching a video is too much commitment. For proof, look at what Facebook counts as a video “view”:
Those “three seconds or less” people need a format different than video, because three seconds isn’t enough time to make a connection through that medium. Great social marketing is always about making connections, and so the skilled marketer figures out how to adapt a message into a different medium.
This is where great photography, meme-based content, and short captions come into play. They’re quick, easily digestible, and encourage engagement with the people who are looking for that kind of content.
Website-based content like blog posts are a great way to establish authority, create a following separate from platforms like Facebook and Instagram, and communicate directly with people who prefer the written word. It’s also a way to communicate high value — compare the effort behind someone showing you a picture on their phone to them writing you a letter by hand and sending it through the mail.
So….what should I do?
There is a chance whatever product or service you’re providing as the audience you’re serving might already have an established preference, so doing some research on what other businesses in your niche are doing could shorten your learning curve.
But for most businesses, having a mix of video, picture/caption, and website-based content is the best initial approach. If you see your audience gravitating towards a medium — they’ll let you know via their comments, likes, and shares — then start to bias the content that direction.