Social Media Content Creation: A Beginners Guide 2022
A Beginner’s Cheat Sheet for Social Media Content Creation
It takes more than good content to thrive in social media because how you post the content matters equally to what content you post.
Social media has become a part and parcel of almost everybody’s life today as television programs are staring at the verge of eventual extinction. Well, extinction is a bit too hard but I just can’t remember wanting to use my television apart from when I wanted to stream Netflix or YouTube on a bigger screen.
We even learn the latest happenings around the world through meme pages nowadays and not from news channels, or if there is a story that really interests us we would go to the channel’s YouTube channel that would be going live. Basically, my mother went from complaining that I am always watching television to am always stuck on my smartphone, it is truly a perk of being a 90’s kid but I wonder if my grandparents ever complained that my mother was always with the radio or newspaper back in the day.
So what makes social media content so special that it has gotten this huge? I feel the main success of social media content comes from the fact that we do not have a defined set of creators like how we have had all these years in television, radio, etc. Instead, anybody can become a social media content creator today with the least amount of resources at their disposal.
We see people rise to stardom overnight but the route is always not that easy, if we trust the process then the only resource we would need is our creativity. So are you ready to become a content creator? More specifically a successful social media content creator? Then let’s get started with social media content creation tips.
The number of social media platforms and the features in them are constantly increasing and updated, as a social media content creator, it is important to analyze how these platforms work. The social media content you create might be very appealing to the audience but the platform’s algorithm must be able to understand it as well.
Obviously good social media content will reach people but it is always a good habit to make the most of everything. Improving engagements is one crucial factor in making the platform algorithms understand that your content is really good. Since each platform varies from the other a specific plan for each platform would be the best way to go about it instead of a generalized plan across all platforms.
So if you are looking to create social media content for platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube independently, or if you are looking to drive traffic from other handles to YouTube then these social media content creation tips would definitely be helpful. Let’s start the list with Instagram and see what are all the actions that count as engagements.
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A carousel post is better than a normal post as every swipe to see the next image will be counted as an engagement. For example, if your post is a piece on long-distance relationships then instead of using an apt image and a long caption or cramming the entire piece in one image follow this method and make a carousel post. This style can be implemented to almost any type of post but be careful not to overdo it or not to make it a pointless swipe. Another factor to consider is the amount of time each person spends on the post as even that counts for engagement and people would definitely spend more time on a carousel post in comparison to a normal post.
We just saw why it would be useful to not make your captions long but at the same time, they should not be too short as well. You might be wondering how to find the ideal length as long captions are less likely to interest your reader and so make your caption just long enough making the ‘Read more’ option available. Yes, you guessed it right, every time a person clicks on reading more it counts as an engagement. So make sure you write a caption that encourages people to hit read more but keep it crisp as well. Hashtags are definitely an integral part of a caption or social media content on the whole and we would be seeing more on it in the generalized social media content creation tips towards the end.
Like I said at the beginning of the article video content is booming and forms a major chunk of the social media content online. Instagram allows creators to publish videos as posts, reels, and IGTV videos. We know how famous TikTok was before it got banned in India and Instagram’s answer to the ban was Reels, right now we can publish videos that are 30 seconds long.
Instagram is banking on Reels to fill the void created by the ban of TikTok and so maximum organic reach can be obtained by preferring Reels over posts. An important factor to keep in mind is that most of the videos online are seen in mute and so adding closed captions to your videos would be a smart thing to do.
Facebook has been in the game for a very long time and right now obtaining organic growth is a difficult task but definitely not impossible. The reason for this is the overwhelming amount of social media content on Facebook that will not fit in the feed space of the user. This results in only the most relevant content reaching the user, so let’s see what points matter to make your content relevant.
The algorithm calculates a relevance score for the content on Facebook based on how recent the post was published which makes the timing of your post very important, it also sees how often the creator has published content making consistency a key factor, it also sees how often the user has interacted with previous posts making community building very crucial and finally it sees how the response is to the post. Starting afresh and overcoming all this would be hard till you build your audience and it would take some meticulous planning and execution.
We just saw how well video content can do on Instagram and based on the recent reports video content on Facebook is likely to get more organic reach in comparison to normal posts. The optimal length of the videos is around 30 seconds to 4 minutes. Do keep in mind the closed captions here as well. Reels get the most reach on Instagram and Live videos on Facebook garner the most audience when they are life. So plan to constantly interact with your audience by going live.
Instead of posting a YouTube link in your Facebook post, a direct video will obtain more reach. Avoiding YouTube links or links to external sources can help as no social media platform wants to drive its audience away from its platform. So naturally posts with outsourcing links perform lower than posts without such links.
If your content is specially made for YouTube and if you want to use Facebook to drive traffic to YouTube then posting the complete video on Facebook to get more reach might impact the views on YouTube. So plan to make a shorter version or teaser of the video with a call to action at the end of the video to visit YouTube and maybe post the link to the video in the comments instead of the description to get maximum reach. Facebook also has a monetization option and if you seem to feel Facebook is working out more or equally as good as YouTube then you could publish the full videos here too.
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The microblogging site Twitter definitely does have its influence on various sectors and fields due to the unique nature of the social media content it holds. It is very easy to get lost in this crowd and requires to stand out content to make a mark.
Stand Out Content:
We all know that Twitter has a character limit but turns out a tweet has a half-life of only 18 minutes during which it will get maximum attention. So to overcome this prefer using GIFs and video content in the tweet as tweets with GIFs get 55% more engagement and the tweets with videos attract 10 times more engagement.
In the limited words, we can use in the tweet prefer to use power words that would draw the attention of the viewer and encourage them to click on the content we have shared and to interact with it. A few examples of power words are ‘Amazing’, ‘Announcing’, ‘Sensational’ etc. Also, don’t forget to shorten the links that you are posting due to the character limit. Telling so much more with very little on Twitter would always be a great option and so target infographics or minimalist designs to be included in your content.
We have covered a lot about the character limit on Twitter but there is an option called Twitter cards that lets users add more elements to the tweet and the main advantage that one gets is that the tweet looks larger and it will be able to stand out from a huge crowd of other tweets. Not all users get to use this option and one should have a website to utilize this. So the website has to be validated on Twitter and then Twitter card metadata also has to be added to the website.
Twitter is probably the best place to begin a conversation with your followers or target audience and there is a specific way to kick start it as well. Conversational ads let us run a campaign where in addition to the image or video we promote we can add custom hashtags with a call to action so that interested people who we reach through targeting will be able to see the vision of the brand or the page and join the conversation with us.
One of the biggest spaces for social media content creators is YouTube and it is one of the major reasons why television programs are facing such a decline. I myself am in fact a YouTuber and I simply can not explain in words how much YouTube has changed my life in the way I express myself. Creating content for YouTube has so many possibilities and let’s take a look at them.
Creating video content might seem very difficult or even very expensive in many instances in comparison to creating other social media content but it is actually very easy once you have done enough planning. As a social media content creator start working on the concepts you could explore and build your niche around, as following the herd mentality might not be the best option to reach the right people. Once you have a clear vision for what your channel is going to be about then focus on the shows that will be featured in the channel.
Build your own style for each of the shows and let them be unique. The unique nature must translate to all the elements of the video like the title, description, and most importantly thumbnail of the video. Even if the video you have made is really good your video might not do well if you do not have the correct thumbnail and video title that clearly conveys what the video is about and why it would be worth the watch. These factors affect the conversion ratio of a person viewing your thumbnail and deciding if he/she wants to open it or not. So always create content with the endgame in mind but do not make clickbait content for this purpose.
Structure of the Video:
The way any content is presented plays a vital role in the impact it makes and so always script out your videos and deliver them in interesting ways. Do not keep the video monotonous but instead introduce photos, videos and if you are talking about numbers, then infographics would be a huge bonus too. Make sure your videos are not too long as videos longer than 20 or 25 minutes usually do tend to reduce the number of people clicking to watch them. So if there is a need to do a 40 or 60-minute video try to do it in parts and make sure to give specific titles to each part so they work as stand-alone videos as well. Adding chapters to longer videos would also help a lot and this can be done pretty easily, all you have to do is make a note of the timestamps at which each topic begins and type it down in the description box.
For example, 00:00 Disclaimer 00:10 Welcome 01:20 Ingredients required and so on
In the scripting process if it is possible to link any of your other videos that are relevant to the audience who will be watching this video then make a reference and add a YouTube card of that video or link it with the end screen. Always incorporate Call to Action like comment, share, and subscribe in the video to get maximum engagements in the video.
This might seem like an odd element for a creator to consider but it is definitely important as YouTube algorithms tend to suggest videos with monetizable possibilities more in comparison to videos that are not that advertisement friendly. In the end, YouTube does hold 45% of the revenue share that each video makes on YouTube. So be aware of the YouTube guidelines and create content accordingly to that and also make sure not to use any content that would infringe copyright claims of any content on YouTube or elsewhere.
Social Media Handles:
YouTube does have enough features in itself to post any kind of update to keep our audience engaged but one could use other social media handles as a way to drive traffic towards YouTube. Though YouTube has a separate community tab to post updates like new releases, BTS, and so on the best way to reach a new audience will be through social media content on various platforms.
One important factor to keep in mind is that when using Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter for this purpose make sure these platforms do not become a space where people will just be updated or notified. Make it more than a bell that rings every time you release new content by creating specific social media content for these platforms specifically like how we have seen above.
For example, our YouTube channel is focused on film appreciation and so the updates we give on Instagram would not be the same we see on YouTube rather we have focused on quotes from directors, trivia, and so on. So the plan is to understand the type of audience the channel has and based on that develop other forms of social media content that would also interest the same people, by doing this we give them a reason to follow the social media handles which in turn will result in sharing the content they see to more of their friends online.
A good way to see how much traffic you are specifically converting from each handle and improve on it is to create bit.ly links through which we can monitor the number of clicks we get from each platform.
We saw specific points to keep in mind when creating social media content for each of the platforms, but there are few general social media content creation tips to keep in mind when creating content.
The first and foremost step when creating social media content is to plan and create a calendar with proper plans and keep posts ready to be posted. The time a post is published also plays a major role in its reach, so one has to go through analytics and find out on what days and at what time are the audience most active.
From that develop a schedule and stick to it as the audience must always be engaged with fresh social media content and not be left waiting for us to post. Another key advantage is that we can make specific posts based on the upcoming special occasions like festivals, celebrity birthdays, or important days in history based on the relevance to the page.
Once the social media content is ready we can use various scheduling tools to schedule the posts in advance, but one should also keep in mind that posting too often might be off-putting to a few people and the newer posts might end up affecting or burying the previous posts before it could reach its maximum potential. This does vary from site to site but it is definitely one point to remember.
We always see hashtags as a way of making our content visible to a larger crowd but there is another cool way to use it as well. First of all adding very general hashtags that are already flooded with millions of posts is not a good idea as our post would get lost in the vast ocean of social media content very soon.
Ranking with top posts would be extremely hard and due to its popularity, the recent page would also get dumped. So just like how we use long-tail keywords for websites choosing a more specific yet relevant keyword would do the trick. The other cool way to use the hashtag would be to create your own hashtags, it might seem ridiculous at the beginning but if you are having a long-term goal in your mind then it would be a good choice.
For example, if a film page named ‘AG Filmer’ has a variety of contents like film reviews, facts, BTS, goofs, and so on then creating a hashtag for their specific posts like #AGFilmerFacts or #AGFilmerBTS will help viewers find similar posts from the page amidst the crowded posts.
Reaching your target audience is the key to building a community around your page and one of the best possible ways to do that would be by collaborating with other social media content creators with a similar base. There are numerous advantages to this as it gives the audience some additional variety from what they usually get from your page and in addition to that it helps in building a community around your social media content when creators are wishing to push the competition aside to give what the audience wants. Not all collaborations need to be with creators from the same base and at times we could reach out and try something very new and still make it work for the audience.
Collaboration does not necessarily have to be with other creators as I myself have created content for videos just by going through the comments section of our videos. For example, in our YouTube channel, we had made a video decoding the various layers in a film, and in the comments section we found a lot of discussion happening and I saw enough potential in it to make it into a video.
So we made the next video featuring all those comments making the audience feel like they are a part of the process as well. This not only makes the audience happy but also encourages them to be more open to participating in the comments section and it definitely worked as we did see people mention that it was the first time they have ever commented on a video.
Giveaways and Contests:
One of the best ways to give back to the audience for the love they shower on us would be through giveaways or providing gifts or running contests. Yes, it is absolutely true that through such giveaways and other strategies we would be able to get higher engagement, so it is very easy to get carried away and make it all about conversions.
That is why it is vital to create a strategy to make it seem like a win-win situation for both the creator and the audience and not like a tedious deal that would benefit the creator. There could be strong participation if the procedure is simple and also one can try to break the generic nature of giveaways and do something very unique to their brand to make it possible.
Saying that likes and comments are good engagements for social media content is a no-brainer, so encouraging your audience to comment in every post is a good plan but make sure to create content specifically for this purpose like a quiz, suggestion, or opinion post.
The good-morning tag posts we do every day are a lot of fun for us and also result in a lot of healthy engagement for the page and this is one of the examples we might be most familiar with. Conduct polls, Q n A’s, and even host Live sessions as live notifications will reach every single follower of yours. Develop a good and healthy conversation in the comments section by replying to maximum comments as each comment counts as an engagement.
The key point to remember here is that there is no fixed formula to social media content creation and these social media content creation tips are just a few proven strategies that help the content we create to reach the most number of people possible. So let’s get out there and be creative.