Creating Great Content

We’ve all heard Dr. Phil throw around his infamous catch phrase, “It ain’t about you.”

Well, if you’re a social media manager, guess what? You should pay attention to Dr. Phil because it really  isn’t about you. It isn’t about what you like. It isn’t about what you want to talk about. It isn’t about you.

It’s about them, those in the social community you manage. Just because you spend your day talking about really “interesting” things revolving around whatever it is that you do, that doesn’t mean people who patronize your business find it interesting. In fact, they probably find it down right boring. And if you focus your online content on things you find interesting, you and your coworkers might be the only ones reading it. Hopefully that’s not your goal.

Different perspectives

When you’re sitting around the brainstorming table trying to think up content, you likely have an end result in mind. And that likely has something to do with someone buying something. But when someone visits your social media site, they are not only not looking to buy something, they don’t want to be sold anything either. That means you’re at odds from the get-go.

So how do you fix that? First, you acknowledge that it ain’t about you and then you turn the tables. Ask yourself if they aren’t looking to buy something, what are they looking for?

Know your target audience

It’s pretty hard to put yourself in your customers’ shoes if you don’t know who they are. It’s a pretty safe bet, though, that you have endless data about who your customer is. Let’s say you’re a high-end cosmetics company. Your customer is likely a woman of middle age or older with an above-average income. As a marketer/social media manager, you really want her to know all about your new products and how great they are. She, however, doesn’t care to hear you rattle on about your products.

But showing her a video of middle-age women and their makeovers using the new make-up will be of interest to her. Posting instructional photos of how to go from daytime professional make-up to a more glamorous evening look will get her attention. Engaging the audience in a conversation about what their favorite shades are might catch her eye.

Planting the seed

Let’s say you’re the owner of a nursery whose potential customer is a homeowner. Do you think that homeowner cares only about plants and shrubberies? No way! Yes, they like to have a nice yard and are likely on your site because you can help with that, but that doesn’t mean their entire world revolves around petunias. They have an entire houseful of interests. From interior design to the latest in stone walkways, there are lots of opportunities to connect with them on a personal level.

You’re probably panicking right about now, saying “But I don’t sell stones or paint. Why would I talk about that?” Because it ain’t about you! Yes, your content will regularly focus on things you do sell, but you’re missing the boat if that’s all you talk about. Plus, keeping them coming back for a wide range of interesting topics means they’ll more likely be there when you’re talking about the things you do sell.

A final thought

Creating interesting, engaging content is an ever-evolving process. If you try something and it flops, regroup and try something else. You never know what will catch on.

The trick is to learn from your mistakes and successes.

Thanks for reading,

Drew Larison