A Few Best Practices for Marketing on the Top Social Channels

In a recent blog post, we discussed how to determine which social channels you should consider in your inbound marketing strategy. Today, we’re going to take a look at a few best practices for each of those seven top social channels.

First, though, remember what social media is for: it’s for social! It’s a simple concept, but one that many companies forget. Your audience wants to be entertained, engaged, educated, inspired — they really don’t want to be sold to. In your social media content mix, remember to keep the promotional stuff to less than 20%. Focus on what your audience wants rather than what you want, and you’ll win every time.

Here are just a few best practices for seven top social channels.

Three Best Practices for Facebook

  1. Images. Photo posts average 39% more engagement than non-image posts.
  2. Timing. Facebook typically has the highest engagement rates during lunch breaks and after dinner.
  3. Community. Keep your Facebook marketing all about your audience. Be concerned with their connections and their experience.

Three Best Practices for YouTube

  1. Search. Remember — YouTube is the second most popular search engine. Optimize your videos for search.
  2. Comments. Pay attention! You need to continually monitor your videos for comments and engagement. If you don’t have time to monitor, then turn off the commenting functionality or set up moderation.
  3. Bite-size. The ideal video length is :31-:60 and should definitely stay under two minutes for the highest number of views.

Three Best Practices for LinkedIn

  1. Professional. Remember at the beginning of this blog post when I said, “Your audience wants to be entertained, engaged, educated, inspired — they really don’t want to be sold to.” There’s a little exception on LinkedIn. This is not the channel for entertaining. Stay professional on LinkedIn. That cat video may be the funniest thing you’ve ever seen, but don’t share it on LinkedIn.
  2. Thought Leadership. Use your LinkedIn presence to establish yourself and your organization as an industry leader. Share educational and timely articles that demonstrate your knowledge and expertise in your industry.
  3. Groups. Groups can be a powerful tool in LinkedIn. Search and discover active groups that you can participate in. Or you can even start your own group for like-minded individuals.

Three Best Practices for Twitter

  1. Responsive. Twitter is fast-paced and users expect quick replies. This is especially true for customer service tweets.
  2. Trends. Monitor the trending topics and watch for appropriate #hashtags to use for greater reach.
  3. Brand Voice. It’s important to keep your brand voice ultra consistent on Twitter. Don’t mix messages or you will lose your primary personas.

Three Best Practices for Pinterest

  1. Visual. Tell the story within the image. Limit your descriptions to 250 characters or less.
  2. Quantity. Optimal reach is typically gained with 5–30 timed pins per day.
  3. Rich Pins. Use open-graph meta tags for your product, recipe, article, movie, and place pins.

Three Best Practices for Snapchat

  1. Connect. Snapchat has been notoriously bad about providing easy ways to connect with new people & organizations within the app. Just recently, they’ve made improvements to this system. But, you’ll still need to promote Snapchat in your other channels to build your audience.
  2. Creative. Snapchat users expect snaps and stories to be interesting, funny, unique, and entertaining.
  3. Urgency. Capitalize on the inherent urgency in ephemeral marketing. Marketing that is here one moment and gone the next is urgent and time-relevant.

Three Best Practices for Instagram

  1. Visual. Pinterest is any kind of imagery. Instagram is all about stunning photography.
  2. Mobile. Instagram was the start of the truly mobile platforms. You can access Instagram on your computer, but you’ll have a much better experience with the app on your mobile device.
  3. #Hashtags. Just like Twitter, using the right hashtags can expand your reach exponentially.

Obviously, this blog post is not an exhaustive list of the best practices for each social channel. And, you’ll find that your social media marketing is driven by your audience, not the general statistics or advice-givers. Watch your channels. Engage with your audience. Track and measure what works and what doesn’t. Your ongoing measurement should drive your social media marketing strategy.