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How to Create Winning Social Media Content

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Today’s consumers crave a more interactive experience with their content. In the battle for attention in our modern digital world, what are the best strategies for how to rise above the noise and get noticed? How are a new breed of content creators driving user engagement, boosting traffic, and dominating on social media?

Experts answered these burning questions (and more) during a recent roundtable discussion hosted by Playbuzz. Read on to learn how top publishers earn huge returns in engagement and social shares, capture the hearts and minds of their audiences, drive traffic, and influence consumer behavior.

Here’s how to create winning social media content.

1. Be true to your brand.

You can easily sell yourself out and become the annoying marketing presence in a crowded space. But you don’t want to be that guy. Instead, be true to your brand while being a valuable part of the conversation. Speak the social language, but continue to use the voice of the brand.

2. Make it personal.

Focus on the personalization of content. More and more, we’re seeing brands driving content that’s relevant to individual users rather than groups of consumers. We’re seeing the “dark social” trend take off, with one-to-one messaging apps like Snapchat growing in popularity, especially among young demographics. Things are becoming more private and less public. So while we’re still being social, we’re not “blasting” content to everyone. This makes for a better, more effective conversation. Rather than engagement like meaningless YouTube comments, create meaningful engagement and strategically target a closed, segmented group.

3. Know your end goal.

This is the “Year of Video,” but if you’re thinking of video as anything other than just a social tool, then you’re likely already behind the curve. There are no magic formulas. Anyone can’t just put up any video and get instant success. You need to use tools correctly.

Many brands are focused on views, but views don’t necessarily hold a ton of weight. A video with 10,000 views can still be completely ineffective. What you really want is to start a conversation around your video. You want an engaged audience that’s talking about your brand. This is far more dynamic than just the views. The views that matter are the qualified ones. Oftentimes, sharing helps, as consumers are far more likely to watch a video if it’s pre-qualified and found from a friend online rather than just stumbled upon.

Click-thru rates can be deceiving as well. Capturing your reader’s attention with a great title isn’t enough. If you write a post with a title promising, “You won’t believe this” and then the post leads to a picture of a cat, the reader is just going to end up being disappointed and not share the content with anyone.

So what’s the most important KPI when it comes to social? The buzzword we’re hearing right now is “shares.” But the question we should ask ourselves is: What do we really want from our content? What do you want the consumer to do next? Share count is not in itself a goal. It’s an artificial sign. If sharing happens organically or in a genuine way, that’s a sign of something deeper and more meaningful—it proves the true engagement.

StumbleUpon takes a different approach: It’s all about driving traffic and getting people through the front door. What they look at is simple: Is today better than yesterday?

4. Go small.

Consumers are reading more and more on their phones and while doing a million other things. In order to engage, you may need to implement smaller, bite-sized content (e.g. listicles, quizzes) that people can consumer in a short period of time. Create these mini content experiences to reach your goal.

At the end of the day, remember this: People want to discover content. And they need help. They’re going to Netflix not knowing what they want and waiting for the platform itself to recommend things. There is so much content out there and consumers are relying on others to curate it. This could be your brand. Deliver the right content to the right people and you’ve won.

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