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First Comes Content Strategy. Then Comes Social Media

Who doesn’t have a favorite place? We may move from town to town and maybe even from country to country, but we always end up discovering one cozy spot. One spot for hanging out with friends and maybe another one for enjoying a cup of Joe by ourselves.

Social networks are the digital cafes of our days.

Recent 2014 statistics show that Facebook has more than 1 billion users per month; out of this billion, more than 20% check their Facebook accounts at least 5 times a day. Google+ gets more than 5 million daily +1s, and as we speak, there are 550 million Twitter users in the world. Unsurprisingly, most Pinterest users are women (80%) and there are now 70 million individuals using the network.

Everyone wants a piece of the action. Marketers and startups in particular.

people in bar

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But what makes the social media world go round? You may have guessed it by now. It’s content.

There’s no such thing as a social media strategy without a content strategy.

Think of it this way: on a boring Saturday, you go to the store and get a bottle of milk you haven’t tried before. Maybe you like the taste. Maybe you’ll buy some more. Maybe you don’t. Maybe you’ll tell your friends not to buy it. If you go to the store and you’ve already tried all the milk brands on the shelves, you’ll end up choosing the one you liked best.

So then, if there isn’t anything new to buy, there isn’t anything new to try. Or like. Or share.

In the same sense, if your website’s a big void, there won’t be anyone tospread the word on it. Why on Earth would someone want to show a big nothing to their friends?

Get smart. Get writing.


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Fill up that void with words that describe you. Words that give you meaning. Words that make you look like a real human being, instead of the desperate entrepreneur that you actually are. Don’t think about bucks when you’re writing something down; readers will know if you’re trying to trick them into buying something, instead of offering them something of value.

For a longer or a shorter period of time, you’ll have to take the risk of not selling anything. You’ll have to go out there and convince people that you’re among the best guys from your industry, without constantly flaunting your product in front of their eyes.

Not sure what you can write about? Organize a brainstorming session with your employers or colleagues, or simply hire a content marketing team.

Here’s a list of tips & tricks for better organizing your writing strategy.

Some other things that intervene in your social success story

Blogging isn’t a great idea for a startup owner that’s always been more on the safe side. Nor is it for the loner or the shiest of CEOs. Blogging will, however, get you far, so toughen up, stop being extraordinarily competitive and learn to work with others.

Simply send an email to a competitor or to one of your influencers. Make sure you explain your background and your interest in the industry. Speak frankly and candidly and offer them the gift of guest blogging. Results will not fail to show up. If all is well, there is a high chance they will return the favor.

Build a community around your product, by regularly participating in conferences or other events from your area of expertise. Sit down with people, talk, take pictures, and then, once you’re back at the office, publish a series of posts about it.


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Most of the times, it is consistency that makes the difference between a mediocre blog and an incredibly shareable one. There is a thin line between failure and success and a rigorous schedule can ensure your website’s glory.

Responding to comments is almost as important as actually publishing anything. If you fail to treat your site visitors with respect, they will not be forgiving. They will show you the same lack of consideration and they will not come back.

I have the text. What now?

There’s only one other thing to reflect upon, after having finally defined a content strategy. Just how amazing is your content? How many chances do you have of making it viral? If you’re unsure of the quality of your posts, take a deep breath and curate everything you’ve written. Analyze your articles. And then analyze them once again.

Then, create accounts on 2 or 3 social networks. Attention! These should be medias that your buyer personas (if you’re finished with content strategy, you’ll know what that is) use. There’s no point in speaking to teenagers if your product is designed for newborn babies. You may want to speak to their mothers, though.

We recommend only 2 or 3 networks in the beginning, because it’s better to test some, to give up on other, before actually deciding to invest in a social media strategy. Especially if you’re only starting up. Be advised, though, for every network has its individual characteristics.

Also, when posting on Facebook one evening, after one glass of wine, you may want to make sure you’re not using your company’s account instead of your personal one. Mistakes have been made in the past. As is the the case of Hubspot’s Pamela Vaughan, who mistook the site’s account for her own and posted an innocent picture of her 5 months pregnant belly on the wrong Twitter account. She did, however, handle the matter with an amazing dose of flair and wrote a great article about her 15 minutes of social media shame.

Social requirements for being sociable

This may sound silly, but there’s an impressive number of websites out there that fail to get the visibility they deserve. Sites that don’t have sharing buttons and sites on which users can’t login with social networks.

Let’s look at it this way: you read an article; you have an opinion; you want to express it, but you have to create an individual account just to post a comment. Would you do it? Or would you just abandon the whole thing, click the little x box and eternally forget about the site?

mother and daughter

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Being sociable means you have to personalize your accounts and give out the same ‘human’ vibe we were mentioning in the beginning of this article. Define your personality with images that best represent your business and with photos of you and your colleagues; in other words, with various types of content your followers may enjoy.

Don’t be selfish. Share your content (because yes! more clicks and more analytics happiness!) but also spread the word on other people’s content, particularly if it belongs to influencers you admire or if it is an interesting piece of news from your industry.

Some key takeaways

In short, if there’s nothing on your site, no one can get excited about it. Concentrate on perfecting your website and your blog and only then think about conquering some social media channels. Stay tuned, we’ll further discuss the ongoing relationship between content strategy and social media in another future post.


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