In this blog post, we’re going to take a look at adding value to your social media. As always, if you’d rather listen, feel free to watch the video below.
Regardless of what Social media guru you subscribe to, you will most likely hear them talk about the need to bring value to your social media profile, whether it is your personal one, or your company/brand (depending on how you sell you product).
Most people, however, talk about the need to create value, and not what value actually looks like. I spent some time thinking about what types of posts and comments create value and found they fall into about four categories.
Let’s take a look at each one in detail
1. Education – This is probably the easiest strategy to start to create value. For most brands/companies, the foundation of what you are selling is that you know something your customer doesn’t. Whether it’s how to make a delicious burger quickly or how to build a skyscraper, you are providing some type of expertise. In your original content and comments, use this expertise. For example, in YouTube videos, many times the content provider doesn’t cover everything, they are just highlighting points because they realize people will only watch for a limited time. Adding a clarifying comment will provide value by helping other viewers.
2. Insight – Insight provides value by taking education to the next level, not only providing the actual piece of information, but also the context under which it happens. Stated another way, insight helps your client understand the why behind the education. Let’s take blogging for example (you are reading one after all). If you listen to most marketers, they will tell you that blogging is an effective digital marketing strategy. For some people, this will be enough for them to start a blog, but others will want to delve into why this is the case. In the blogging example, blogging is effective if it’s on your website because it will improve your SEO and also search engines typically value sites that change more frequently than those that are left stagnant. Now you have provided value because client has some background context (or insight) on the education you’ve provided.
3. Entertainment – Did you find the above gif entertaining (I hope you did?). If nothing else, entertainment typically provides value. Most people don’t come to social media (with maybe the exception of LinkedIn) to explicitly get work tasks completed. That doesn’t mean they can’t learn about your brand or follow your content, but simply that education or insight may not be the lens in which they are viewing their social media currently. In this case, the evocation of emotion is the value.
I also want to issue a word of caution on entertainment. Entertainment should still be in alignment with your brand. If you have a great following because you are so entertaining, at some point, you may find most of your followers are not your potential clients. Some may see this as an opportunity to pivot into something new, but if you are in a local business, it is more likely will end up wasting money retargeting customers that will never come to your business.
4. Inspiration – Finally, we have inspiration. Sometimes, the best way to provide value to others is to simply motivate them. Gary Vaynerchuk (pictured above), is one of the kings of this. He incorporates education in an education setting and this has become his personal brand at this point. Value through inspiration may take the form sharing your story so people can see how you got to where you are at, or something as simple as a comment saying you appreciate what the original poster is doing.
Finally, look for synergy when possible. In the paragraph above, I mention how Gary Vee combined education and inspiration. There is no reason your posts cannot provide all 4 of the categories listed above. That doesn’t mean you have to wait until you come up with a post that does (remember: you have to say something), but that can be your gold standard.
So ask yourself before you submit your next piece of content, “Does this provide value?”. If it doesn’t, add something from one of the 4 categories to make sure you’re creating great content for your peers and clients.