April 12, 2017

Mini-Guide to Social Media for Business + Blogging (Plus a Posting Guide!)

This post was first published in September and has been revamped to be as helpful and relevant as it can be! Integrating your blog or business with your social media accounts can be a tricky thing. Some platforms might work better for certain content you want to promote, you might have a considerably larger following on one platform versus another, you might just not like certain platforms... the list goes on. Thus, today's post was born. It definitely took some time to write, but I think that it will help you with using social media for business and for blogging. 





I've set up this post in a way that I hope is easy to follow: pros and cons of each platform as it relates to content marketing come first, followed by a little more detail and my own personal experience. I am by no means a social media expert; this post is based solely on what I've found to be true and the patterns I've noticed on social media mixed up with my opinions. Get the social media posting guide (what type of content to post to each platform) right here or at the bottom of this post. 

Twitter



Pros: Great traffic generator, relevant hashtags, character limit good for brevity, Twitter chats
Cons: Good and bad times to tweet

Twitter is actually my favorite partner platform because:


+ It's a great traffic generator. Throw up a link, maybe use a few hashtags, and it's really easy for your followers to retweet and share your content. Read more: 4 Reasons You Should Focus on Twitter as a Content Marketing Platform.
+ There are Twitter chats. I talk more about that, and which chats I participate in, here, but essentially they connect you with other creatives in real-time.



But, there are "good" and "bad" times to tweet, and if you tweet at a "bad" time, your tweet could get lost in the shuffle. 



Instagram



Pros: Photos are a fun way to share things, no real "bad" time to post
Cons: Pressure to keep a theme, your IG followers might not be reading your blog/become clients, high unfollower rate



I mentioned in my blogging tips post that having a cohesive/attractive Instagram feed is a great tool for engagement and for building a following. That being said, don't be so obsessive about your theme that it takes the fun out of taking and editing photos. I've been suing the same filter settings in VSCO for months, with a few little adjustments on a picture-by-picture basis, for all my photos, and unintentionally started a theme in my content, so I sort of went with it. Need ideas for posting daily while still posting intentional content with a story? >> 7 Quick-Fix Photo Ideas for Brand Storytelling on Instagram.

Your Insta followers might not convert, meaning that the people who follow you on IG may or may not actually be reading your content or purchasing your services— in fact, most probably aren't, especially if you have a large following. Some people might just follow you for your aesthetic, which is all well and good, but isn't the point of having an Instagram account for your business or blog to generate traffic to your website? If you answered "yes," connecting with other bloggers whose blogs you like or whose content you share in Facebook groups a good way to work on your conversion rate!

Finally, it seems like Instagram is the hardest platform when it comes to retaining followers. There's nothing you can do when a random business, Etsy shop, or restaurant follows you just to get their name out there and unfollows you two days later. There are also a lot of Instagram users who are just looking for a follow back and who will unfollow you if you don't #follow4follow. That's okay, though, because that leaves you with followers who follow you for your content and who will leave genuine comments on your pictures.


Pinterest



Pros: Can generate lots of traffic, high follower retention, group boards
Cons: Not all posts are "pinnable," not as easy to integrate with other social media


First of all, Pinterest isn't really a social media platform (wait, whaaaat?). Pinterest is a search engine, so how you use it for business and blogging is a little different from how you use other social platforms.

• Pinterest can be your best friend when it comes to certain types of posts. How-tos, tips, recipes... if you can make a good featured image for a post, it's probably Pinterest-friendly. If the content is not Pinterest-friendly (e.g. a personal story), don't force it to fit the platform. Other pinners are less likely to save these types of pins and read your original post.
• If Instagram has the highest rate of followers lost, Pinterest has the highest follower retention. It's not often that people follow and unfollow a board because if it's an interest of theirs, they'll want to see the content that you pin to it.
• Pinning to a group board can also get your posts out to more people.


Facebook



Pros: Easy to set up, easy to connect with friends and family, blogging groups
Cons: Requires serious commitment 


I didn't have a Facebook page until a couple of months ago, and it was one of the best decisions I've made for my business. As far as using social media for business goes, if you're not on Facebook and engaged in groups for creatives, you're making a mistake. Answering and posting questions to these kinds of groups is critical if you want to build trust relationships with others in the community. Other group members will start to notice if you post regularly and contribute useful information.

Tweet it: If you want to build trust relationships in the community, you need to be engaged on Facebook. 


Facebook also helps you to get word around about your business or blog because family and friends can like and share your page and posts directly from the platform. The one (big) thing about Facebook, though? You really have to commit if you want the engagement and client flow that can come from it.


Snapchat



Pros: Different look into your personal brand
Cons: Engagement/traffic is not trackable, might make you feel that you need to share more than you want to 


I don't personally use Snapchat for my business, and for the same reasons I don't talk politics, religion, or other very personal beliefs over here, I probably won't. Snap makes me feel like I need to share more than I want to with people that I, well, don't know. I'd like to think that people who read my posts and whom I'm friends with online feel like they know me, but I'm not willing to share what I'd post to Snap for my immediate friends to see with the rest of world. 

However, lots of bloggers, and even business owners, like using Snap because it gives a different, more personal look into someone's life that you can't get from her written content.

If you found this post helpful, think I missed something, or have something to add, please let me know! (And read why I don't have personal social accounts here.)

8 comments

  1. Love this! Thank you for all the tips. I really only use Twitter and Instagram... I definitely am going to try to use Pinterest and Facebook more!

    Kendal // Life With Kendal

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    1. Thanks, Kendal! I put off joining Facebook groups because I pretty much hate Facebook (no personal account for me), but then I just did it... and I really like it! Blogging/business groups are really great when you have questions and are a cool way to interact with other Internet peeps haha

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  2. This is a really great breakdown! I use Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook right now and definitely agree with those. Twitter is like a whole different world to me. I haven't quite figured it out!

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    1. Thanks, Angie! As I mentioned in the post, Twitter is my favorite partner platform for blogging. Once you get the hang of it, it's pretty fun to use and can a great tool for promoting content.

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  3. I definitely am with you and love IG. I just dislike the follow-unfollow game!
    Such great strategies for these social platforms, I could definitely work on becoming more social on Facebook and Twitter.
    Caitlin

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    1. Thanks, Caitlin! I'm still working out my "best" social strategy. Good luck!

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  4. I've been thinking about whether or not to make a Twitter and a Facebook page so this post was super helpful!

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    1. So glad it was helpful, Emily! I definitely recommend creating an account on each platform. Even if you hate one or both, you at least tried them out to see what works for you and your brand!

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