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A Guide to Writing on Different Social Media Platforms

Mobile phone showing different social media networks

We know social media has impact – but don’t make the mistake of treating all the channels the same.

Creating the right content to maximise response needs a real understanding of the different platforms.

At Ridgemount, we have knowledge in delivering strategically targeted online content, which results in not only brand enhancement within the targeted audience, but can translate into invaluable sales leads… if the formula is right.

Brands should use social media to build not only a following, but share knowledge and insights on their industry, position themselves as thought leaders and create a personality, as well as promoting their latest products.

Don’t just think words – videos, gifs, infographics and images are important too and there is plenty of room for variety and creativity.

Most important, however, is to understand the differences between different social media platforms and who is most likely to be using each one. This understanding should inform your content, style and tone.

Using each social channel might have the same end goal, but they all do so in very different ways and content should always be created specifically for each channel.

There are many social channels but we will focus on those our clients use most prominently: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and more recently, Pinterest.

Facebook on mobile device next to laptop

Facebook

Primarily a place of leisure – for sharing personal updates and news and views.  The majority of adults use the channel, so your B2B audience is there somewhere.  Using Facebook’s astonishingly accurate targeting it is possible to deliver your message to a very precise audience.

Technical as well as corporate information resonates well, but the tone must be casual and informal and always accompanied by an image or video for maximum impact.

Remember that boosted posts can be targeted to achieve specific results, whether that is website traffic, video views or lead generation.  Decide what your desired outcome is first, then create the post.

Your audience isn’t on Facebook to find work-related information, so your content must be super-relevant and very engaging to attract their attention.   Pay attention to the information Facebook gives on when your audience is using the platform and schedule your posts accordingly.

Always pay attention to comments on your posts and make sure you reply.  Public criticism can be neutralised with a well-informed response.

LinkedIn

Could be described as the Facebook for professionals. LinkedIn is definitely a work channel, and content is professional and work related.

Once you get the subject matter right this is a platform where longer arguments work well.  Opinion and interpretation are as important as information and it can be a very good place to start a debate.

Use LinkedIn’s integrated blog platform to share longer pieces of copy within the channel as well as directing readers to your website.  Imagery and video content resonate well too, but remember that LinkedIn’s strength lies in the following of individuals, so do your best to make sure it’s your staff who are posting and sharing content.

Promoted content is effective on LinkedIn – and, of course, its targeting is amazing for B2B content as the platform identifies people by their job title as well as organisation.  Be prepared to pay much more per click than on other channels, but the audience can be hugely valuable.

Twitter

Now this is when the fun part of content writing starts. Arguably, this platform has more room for creativity, even as you’re limited to only 280 characters.

A “Tweet” needs to not only be factual and straight to the point, but also catchy and very original. Tweets should be written with an informal and light tone while still including a clear call to action.

Use the functionality of Twitter to get more traction: live polls, pinned tweets and hashtags associated with specific events or news stories will all draw in the audience.

Best performing tweets also have a picture or a gif to accompany them; as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words….

Instagram

The photo and video-sharing social networking service is popular among brands who have a strong focus on aesthetics and art-based projects or designs.

The focus should be on the photo or video rather than its caption, which should contain appropriate hashtags in order to gain more views and followers. Links cannot be shared on an Instagram post, therefore the smartest call to action in an Instagram’s caption is often “link in bio”.

Pinterest

This social channel is designed to enable saving and discovery of images, gifs and sometimes videos. Great for building an awareness of your products the channel also now offers promotional posts which can be very effective in driving web traffic.

Writing content for this platform is rather limited, as this social media channel is mainly focused on sharing images. One might aim attention on writing a brief description including hashtags and sharing a link.

These are just a few of the options available – more will be developing all the time. Don’t make the mistake of feeling compelled to use every channel: much better to focus attention on the one that is most likely to deliver the best results and work hard to create the right content for that audience.

You’ll know when it works – look out for our blog on measuring success.

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