Grow Your Audience Without Ads
Going “viral” is what can happen when you post a piece of content and your “perfect person” sees it and they engage, comment and share. This pushes your content out to more people so they join in, too.
So first, let’s discuss the two different kinds of “going viral”.
a) Personal Viral — in a nutshell, this is when you reach 10x more people than you do on a typical post, without ad spend.
b) Official Viral — this is when your content reaches 1,000,000 people, without ad spend.
Point #1 — Optimize your profile and posts.
* At first glance, your profile needs to communicate to your audience that they’re in the right place and your content is relevant to them. Your profile description will appear when they hover over your name (on a PC/laptop), so make sure this communicates who you are and what your content is about.
* Your page name needs to be clear. Every time you share a post, your page name is basically the “heading”. When your page name is clear and congruent with your content, more people are likely to follow it. More followers, means more engagement, which means the algorithm pumps out your posts to more people. This raises your chances of going viral, and also leads to more sales.
* Your post description is what is going to “hook” your audience. Get inside their heads and talk WITH them, not AT them.
* Make sure the photos, and auto-populating video & link images make them want to stop their scroll. These are often called “thumbnails” and your best results will occur when your images trigger an emotional response. This can be happy, sad, funny, whatever. Just remember the whole point is about connecting with your audience, and this is best done through the power of emotion.
Point #2 — Get inside their heads
* Ask yourself
— does my post make the reader feel good?
— does it make my reader look good to their friends and family?
— does it help my readers live a better life?
— Does it encourage my readers to reach for their full potential?
— What are their pain points? What do I have to offer them as a solution to those pain points.
You always want to be adding value. No one likes the relentless salesman/woman. But the more value you add, the more your readers begin to trust you and see that you have something of value to provide, the result is higher follower count and ultimately, organic sales.
Point #3 — Stacking your posts and Engagements
You’re probably asking, what the heck does that mean, Jenn?
And you’re asking the right question! But first we need to understand that there are different types of engagement, and social media platform algorithms use these different types of engagements in different ways.
* The Scroll-Stop — This just simply means that you momentarily got your viewers attention. Have you ever posted a video and saw that it had 500 views, but almost no real engagement? This is a scroll-stop. You got their attention, but not enough to make them want to engage.
* Clicks — this could be a photo click, a link click or even just a click to read the comments. But “click” engagement shows there was intent.
* Micro-reactions — these are the quick and easy emoji reactions: thumbs up, heart, sad face, etc.
*Retention — this is a big one for platforms like TikTok — the algorithm on TikTok loves retention and re-watches. When people stay to watch your full video, and more importantly RE-watch them, TikTok thinks — man this person is putting out some good content -lets show it to more people! Statistics show that if your video is 15 seconds or less, almost 100% of people will watch it all the way through. The longer the video, the more that percentage drops. This is mainly because of shiny-object syndrome (squirrel!). So if you want to make longer videos, make sure they’re packed full of content that is valuable or entertaining enough that people are going to want to watch it all the way through.
* Saving Content — this is another big one! Media platforms LOVE it when people save your content — because it tells the algorithm that your content is relatable and people are finding value in it. In turn, they’ll push your content out to more people. This is why it’s so important to add VALUE to everything you post. “How-to” posts and inspirational posts are great for this!
* Comments — Comments don’t rank quite as high as retention and re-watch, but it’s definitely something the algorithm takes notice of. This is the importance of creating “Conversation Starter” posts. I’m sure you’ve seen the ones where someone says something like “No woman’s name starts with A and ends with A. Prove me wrong.” and then you see thousands of people chime in with names like Anna, Anika, Annabella, etc. This is a great example of Conversation Starter’s. Posts like this are almost guaranteed to create massive comment threads, because OF COURSE there are female names that start with A and end with A, and people want to add their two cents.
* Tagging — Whenever someone tags another person, social platforms don’t just show it to the person who was tagged, but also to others who are just like them or in the same network of relationships.
*Sharing Content — this is kind of self explanatory and ties in with saving content, but a bit more valuable because people are pushing your content in front of new viewers/readers. Therefore once again, the algorithm takes notice.
Examples of places where your content can be shared:
* Facebook Groups
* Messenger Chat
* Comment Threads
* Sharing between platforms, like FB and IG
Point #4 — Cross Posting
Join and participate with other pages, groups, influencers and businesses in your niche. Get to know them and share their content. Social platforms are amazing for helping us grow our own reach as we interact with others. Remember, you don’t actually need someone’s permission to collaborate with them, you just share their stuff! Just be sure that if you’re not sharing directly off of their page to always give credit your inspiration. We’re not talking about stealing content here, we’re talking about sharing, so credit must be given where it is due.
Point #5 — ABK — Always be Kind!
You’ve likely heard the expression, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar, and this is absolutely true. No matter where you are at on your journey, you will likely come across some Negative Ned or Nancy who wants nothing more than to just rain on your parade. The best practice is not to engage (after all, their negative comments are still pushing out your content, because the algorithm can’t tell the difference between nice and naughty comments), but if you find you simply can’t resist responding — respond with love. This is a valuable lesson I learned from Gary Vaynerchuk (you might know him better by his social media handles, Gary Vee), who is an absolute genius as far as I am concerned. He always says, when you’re met with negativity, respond (if you must) with empathy, kindness and love. They never see it coming.