Consistency is key to an effective social media presence.
Why are we always stressing consistency here? Because consistency is essential to the success of any brand. More than that, the success of any business. If you provide excellent service one day and awful service the next, could you expect clients to become dedicated customers? No! Clients need to know that each and every exchange with your business will be equally excellent in order to build a steady relationship.
But maintaining consistency across social media platforms is difficult stuff.
Trying to connect genuinely and consistently across – what are you on, 4, 5, 6 unique social media platforms? – can be a tangle for any business with limited resources. Which, let's not kid ourselves, is every business.
So today we're sharing what we've researched to bring you a guide to essential strategies for maintaining consistency across social media platforms.
Note: Today's post covers consistency in content and engagement strategies – but visual consistency has a huge impact on your social media presence as well. So, lucky you, that's what we're covering tomorrow! 😁
Alright, let's get right to it:
First let's nail down some clarifications on what we mean by consistency:
What consistency across social media platforms doesn't mean (!!!)
Consistency does not mean treating every social media platform as if they function the same way. Instead, you're aiming to consistently maximize your presence across all platforms based on the unique strengths of each network.
What consistency across social media platforms means:
Delivering a consistent message, voice, personality and perspective across every social media account you operate.
The biggest red flag indicating an ineffective social media strategy is treating all platforms as equal. I can't stress this enough, guys:
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and any other platform you're on are utilized in different ways. If people used each platform for the same purpose, unique platforms wouldn't exist at all!
If you're consistently pushing exactly the same content in the same form across all platforms, you're making a huge mistake. That's not what we mean by consistency!
You're losing out! Your traffic is flying out the window! This is important, friends.
It's SO important, in fact, that we analyzed the key elements of consistently effective social media strategies across all platforms for you.
And we've compiled concrete strategies for you to utilize the next time you're about to hit the share button.
And I've even got a mnemonic device to help you remember them.
Of course you are here we go:
How are you going to maximize your social media effectiveness and consistency? I'll tell you how. By using...
Each letter represents a key aspect of developing consistently effective strategies across social media platforms. You should consider each and every element of BUMPED before sharing content: Benefit, Usefulness, Multimedia, Platform, Expectations and Degree of intimacy. What do I mean by these?
Well, let's take it from the top!
How will this post benefit you? Before you share, stop and consider what you're trying to gain by posting this content. Find your answer, then define a measure of effectiveness for the benefit you seek to achieve.
Are you trying drive traffic to your blog? Then your measures of effectiveness will most likely be visitors, page views, time spent on each page.
Pinpointing the benefit you're seeking to gain by sharing content – and then measuring your level of success in achieving that benefit – is how to determine whether or not your social media strategies are truly successful.
This one's all about considering your audience's motivations: Why is what you're sharing of use to your audience?
Humans are motivated to do things that improve their position. Why will your audience want to interact with your content and take action that moves you toward meeting your goals?
Will it make them laugh? Make them more knowledgeable? Allow them to save money? If you can't determine why your content would be of use to your audience, reconsider what you're about to share.
Is what you're about to share going to stand out to your audience? Or are their eyes going to glaze over and their little scrolling fingers spin past your content?
Social media users consistently engage more with images than words alone. Add interest to your post with multimedia – a photo, illustration, gif (you know how much we love gifs), or, even better, a video – which attracts the highest levels of engagement on most platforms.
And that transitions nicely into the next element:
Alright guys, here's one of the most important points in the whole BUMPED game: Platform. Consider the structure and formal elements of each platform and tailor your content to that platform's structure.
Take Instagram and Pinterest. Both are highly visual platforms. But a major formal difference between the two lies in each platform's structure: on one, you've only got a palm-sized square that will be viewed one at a time to work with. On the other you've got to compete with a whole screen filled with additional content, but can have a nearly infinitely long image. So tailor your content to each platform's structure. Instagram demands small, clearly understandable images. Pinterest is excellent for tall graphics with clear text. Utilize the strengths of each!
This goes hand-in-hand with platform: You've got to consider your audience's expectations across each network.
How and why do people utilize each platform? What are the audience's expectations for content on each site? Pinterest users expect highly visual content that they can squirrel away for personal reference sometime in the future. Facebook users, on the other hand, expect content they can share with close personal networks. Understand your followers' expectations for each platform and pitch to those expectations.
DEGREE OF INTIMACY:
How personal should your content get?
Again, it depends on the platform! Facebook is extremely personal: It's all built on social relationships. Your followers, especially if you're running a small business or blog, care about your personal successes and trials. Sharing personal stories nearly always gives our content an extra bump in our Facebook metrics. We reach more viewers, gain a wider audience, increase site traffic, and, ultimately, our boost our business.
Twitter, on the other hand, has a much lesser degree of intimacy: Twitter is geared toward networks built on shared interests and fields. We've found that our content focusing on topics and strategies – business, design, branding – outperform our content focused on personal connections or experiences. So we changed our degree of intimacy for each social media network to best utilize the platform. We emphasize personal posts on Facebook and present our content in topic-driven posts on Twitter.
What do you think of BUMPED? What are some key social media strategies in your repertoire?
And did you really think this post was about to end with only one gif?