The majority of brands which utilize social media as a marketing tool rarely rely on only one platform. Odds are, if a company has a Facebook page, they may also try to run a Twitter account, use LinkedIn for professional networking, or show off their creative side on Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube.
How is it possible for small and medium sized businesses to manage all of these accounts? If time is a constraint, content quality may suffer, and audience engagement will decline.
Since no business owner wants to damage their online reputation, most brand managers will work to create content and keep up with comments on each platform individually. That is, they treat each site as a completely separate entity without really considering how they relate to one another.
That’s fine – it allows you to spend less time planning and more time managing. However, I don’t believe it’s the optimal solution.
You have probably heard the expression “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts”. This means that when pieces of an equation work together, rather than acting on their own, there is a greater outcome; this is also known as synergy.
When the relationships between a brand’s social media accounts are taken into consideration and used to create an effective strategy, there is often a greater return. But how exactly can you create synergy among your social media accounts?
Linked vs. Unlinked
The most common technique used to create a harmonious balance between accounts is simply linking them. This means that when a post is made on one account, it will be relayed to, and posted on the other platforms. It’s actually pretty easy to set something like this up, but is it really the best solution?
There are different audiences on each platform, as well as repeat users. When you link content, there is a problem: some of your followers will see the same content, repeated (this is often an annoyance to them), and others will see content which is not really suited to them.
In other words, linking content doesn’t make sense when it’s not properly executed. Unlinked accounts, on the other hand, can be much more effective. This tactic requires you to create separate, related content for each platform. It may take more time, but I think the results are worth the effort. Now, let’s take a look at how we can create social synergy through unlinked accounts.
Keep Posts Relevant, but not Repeated
As mentioned above, we want to keep our content related, or relevant to one another. This allows us to get our message across multiple platforms, to different audiences, at specific intervals. A greater audience means more views, which hopefully can lead to more conversions.
While it is valuable to convey the same message to all of your followers, it’s also important to not simply repeat information. Repeating the exact same message is not the most effective tactic because every scenario requires a specific approach.
Instead of repeating, change up how you explain the message in each post. How exactly should you decide what to write from one platform to another though?
Position Content for the Right Audience
Aiming content at your specific audience on each platform is the easiest way to make drafting decisions. If you’ve been managing an account for a while, you probably know what your followers react to, and what they avoid. Use this to your advantage to create content which can convert across the boards.
For example, let’s say you own a business which has just released a new
product. You want to first advertise it to your Facebook fans, so you
draft a post which briefly covers the details, and manages to stir up
some interest. You see success, so wouldn’t it make sense to post the
same message everywhere else?
In some cases, maybe it would. But let’s say the initial message was over 140 characters. If you posted it on Twitter, it would be too long, and very few people would bother to read it. Instead, you should make a specific message just for Twitter.
You may also want to create a longer, detailed post for your blog. In this sense it’s important to think of ways to use each platform’s strengths to your advantage, as well as considering your audience’s needs.
Moderation is Key
Once a strategy is developed for creating social media synergy, it’s crucial to remember to keep everything in moderation. Not every post needs a relevant, corresponding post on every platform. This can get overbearing to your audience, and very tiresome for you.
Try to create synergy when you need it most; big product launches, sales, contests – events which you want a lot of attention for. Just posting a picture on Instagram does not necessarily warrant updates on Facebook and Twitter.
Learning to keep your accounts related, but not identical takes some time. Keep practicing, revising, and updating your strategy with modern marketing elements, and you will be on the path to successful social media synergy.