What do your company and the most famous cream-filled chocolate cookie have in common?
If the answer is nothing, perhaps you should rethink that.
Oreo employs some of the smartest marketers in the country, who have transformed the company into a social media powerhouse with a bigger increase in online buzz over the past year than any other brand. With more than 35 million Facebook followers and an excess of 250,000 Twitter followers, the cookie company must be doing something right.
Engaging current and potential customers on social media is much easier said than done. Even the top brands that have been utilizing social media platforms for years still struggle with ways to keep their followers interested. There are plenty of strategies out there, but there are two main objectives that the most social media savvy brands seem to nail: They post highly shareable content and they encourage engagement with their fans and followers.
Based on those two goals, here are 10 foolproof tips that will help you mimic the success of the smartest companies out there.
10 Tips for Creating Shareable Content and Encouraging Engagement:
1. Cause a reaction
When crafting a new post or tweet, think about what reaction you want to get out of the reader. Think of desired reactions as one-word exclamations, like: Weird! Shocking! Hilarious! If you get a strong reaction out of the reader, they’ll be much more likely to share the post with friends and followers.
2. Be entertaining
Don’t be afraid to add some humor. Being too serious makes for boring content that no one will feel the need to pass on.
3. Provide value
Is there any value to this post? Did the reader learn anything new? If there’s useful information in the post, the reader will want to share their newfound knowledge with friends.
4. Keep it concise
There are too many other distractions in people’s newsfeed to interest them in reading a three-paragraph post. Keep it to a few sentences and include a link to a more in-depth look at the topic.
5. Consider keywords
Every minute, 2 million search queries are made on Google. Think about what people are searching for in your industry, and include keywords in the titles of your blog posts, Facebook posts, tweets, and the About Us section of all of your social networks.
6. Stay timely and relevant
If it’s a holiday or if something major happened in the news recently, talk about it! If Congress passed a major piece of legislation or Miley Cyrus did something crazy that no one can stop talking about, find an original and creative way to comment on it, and tie it back to your product. When Oreo tweeted this picture during last year’s Super Bowl Blackout, it created crazy buzz.
7. Ask questions or provide fill in the blanks
Asking questions and fill in the blanks are fun ways to encourage creative responses from your fans, and they practically guarantee comments on a post. People genuinely enjoy giving their opinions, and if you offer to post the most popular reply on your company page, you’ll generate even more feedback.
8. Reply to comments
So many companies miss out on a huge opportunity to engage with their customers by ignoring what they say in comments sections. If someone leaves a response or a question on one of your posts, answer it. Even if a follower just re-tweets you or leaves a comment that says, “love this article” on your blog, reply with a quick thank you. Feel free to get creative with your responses, too. It makes you seem more like a real person.
9. Don’t over-promote your brand
Facebook followers will quickly un-follow you if you constantly spam their newsfeed with self-promotion and nothing more. Post things they will find interesting, like noteworthy news articles relating to your industry, and they’ll be more likely to enjoy your posts and pass them on.
10. Include a call to action
This goes for Facebook posts, tweets, and blogs, alike. Use an effective action word to call your reader to some form of action. Here are some examples:
“Share this post with a friend who might find it relevant”
“Leave a comment below and let us know what you think”
“Learn more about this product here” (and include a link to your website)
Merely creating a Facebook or Twitter page for your company is no longer enough. If you want your business to thrive you must be active and engaging on social media, and create posts that people will talk about and share with their friends.
So here’s our call to action—let us know if we missed any important social media tips on Facebook. We would love to hear what you’ve found works for your business!