How to tailor social media posts per channel

Customizing social media posts per channel is necessary for your content to perform best per platform. Brands on multiple channels need to vary their content and captions in order to draw in their varying audiences. But how do you do this?

Facebook

Keep posts related to your brand in both content chosen and through the caption. Your brand should be well showcased through at least the Post and About sections.

A great example of variable content, of both photos and videos, that adheres to its campaign on Facebook is Adidas. They are currently using there #heretocreate campaign, linking these posts with the hashtag on Facebook. The content is uplifting, positive, and showcases the brand in an active perspective. They also tag the woman featured in the spot, bringing in her audience as well.

Caption

Comments have a character limit of 63,206, Facebook offers the luxury of long posts for users. However, content will be hidden underneath "Read more" when it runs longer. Vary your posts between short and long, between sharing information and promotions, so that your core audience has variety in their News Feed.

Tag photographers, designers, or influencers to bring in their natural audience as well. Brands can also work together to cross-promote, especially if they have complementary products or services.

Hashtag

Hashtags should be used sparingly on Facebook, with maybe only one or two per post. Hashtags are meant for a younger audience, so use infrequently when looking to target more seasoned customers. 

Content

Posts in Facebook should be focused on your brand and its image. Photos and videos receive more engagement than text alone, by at least two times, so incorporate visuals where appropriate.

Opportunities

Showcase your brand or related promotions with the Facebook Cover Photo. This area can be changed with promotions or adjusted by time of year. It's a great space to get creative on your Facebook page.

Instagram

Instagram is great for real photos of your brand in action. Showcase the "real" side of the brand like the less uniform content, the interesting product shots, and experience pictures.

A couple of my favorite Instagram accounts are Modcloth and ohjoy. They have very consistent looks to their feeds, with bright pops of color and clear photos. Both are joyful and showcase a lived in side to the brand.

Caption

Keep captions interesting and showcasing the brand personality. This is the opportunity to be funny, inspiring, witty, or motivational while incorporating emojis and hashtags. Depending on the brand personality and the message, captions can be long or short. Nike does a great job of varying post length with interesting and on-brand captions.

Hashtag

With up to 30 hashtags, feel free to incorporate as many as needed to showcase the brand. Use a few in the caption and then put the majority of them in the first comment to keep the caption space clear. Apps like Tagomatic will help identify which hashtags are good to include.

Content

Photos should have a curated look or a "real" look. The feed should be taken into consideration as a whole since the photos will be viewed all next to one another. Be consistent in the use of particular filters to emphasize a particular color, saturation, or contrast. Brands can use the available Instagram filters, or check out one of the many tools that allows marketers to create their own filters.

Content on Instagram should feel more lived in, more personal than a Facebook feed. In some cases, the brand will use an influencer to help showcase the brand realities in addition to the official Instagram. One of my favorite examples is from livesweetphotography.

Opportunities

The brand's description section is a great place for brands to sum up what their feed is about. Since the section is searchable within Instagram, it also can help brands get discovered. alittlepaperdoll's caption is, "K A Y L A│mills ॐ new york city seeker of everyday magic." Her photos showcase NYC and her daily style, succinctly summarized in the about section.

Twitter

Twitter is a platform that allows brands to engage one-on-one with their followers. The primary reason to tweet is to keep people up-to-date and to take the opportunity to engage. Marketers are still posting content on brand, but can step outside of created content to develop a greater relationship with customers.

Travel posts very simply on Twitter, but creates a beautiful feed of photos and simple captions. While it does not assert an opinion, or tag people in a conversation, or even use hashtags, they are still driving engagement.

Caption

With only 140 characters, leave room on Twitter for links and give extra space for people to write comments on re-tweets. Captions should stay short, because of the character limit, but should also be a part of the conversation.

Hashtag

Keep hashtags to a minimum and use the ones related to the conversation you are tracking. By keeping track of the conversation, it's easier for brands to jump in with relevant commentary and find new followers. Hashtags are meant to help track conversation and bring in new followers, rather than just an added whimsical touch.

If you're unsure of what hashtags to include, check out the trending topics on the desktop version of twitter to see what is being discussed. Trends are also available in the search section of the mobile application.

Content

Keep up variety in content while staying on brand and then have one-on-one engagement with followers in real-time. Content on this platform is not just posting great brand tidbits, and linking to great content, but also replying and joining conversations. I enjoy following Stephen King because of his fun thoughts, strong opinions, and great shout-outs to people he admires as well.

Opportunities

Join active conversations on Twitter to define a brand's perspective or tweet back at followers. When followers ask a question, engaging in the conversation will help drive brand engagement. With larger topics, like the Super Bowl or holidays, try and work in trending posts to gain traction with people looking at the larger chats.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is for the company behind the brand. It shows the professional side, from hiring to new releases, but does not get in depth about products like the other channels. If the company produces great content, this is a place to let it shine.

Forbes does a great job with this, they post out their content to drive prospective customers and employees to their page. They post daily about professional concerns, accompanying their articles with images, and include highlights to draw people in.

Caption

Captions stay professional and can highlight the business reality behind a great product. Talking about the office culture, what it takes to make great products or services, and highlighting executive leadership all enhances the content on LinkedIn. By adding these touches, people interested in joining your company can also get a greater sense of what it might be liked to work there.

Hashtag

Minimal to no hashtags on LinkedIn because of its professional nature. Including campaign hashtags will help followers track the content across platforms and give people a greater idea of the breadth of the campaign.

Content

On LinkedIn, all of the content can be about the company and its products or services. Posts should include a photo or video, since these tend to be engaged with more frequently. Content can skew professional or company only, with a nod to the products. Posts should be different than Facebook because the audience on LinkedIn should differ in their motivation for following.

Since it is a mostly professional environment,it will have a network of employees that can also post on behalf of their company's work on their own pages. This is gives content a chance to proliferate among all of the employees and their connections, expanding the company's social influence sphere.

Opportunities

Use the about section to really showcase how the company is unique. Prospective customers in business to business and employees will read this particular blurb to glean insight into the company. Keep the writing interesting, concise, and include all of the pertinent information that people in a professional setting might need.

Once you understand the functions and more expected ways to tailor content per platform, it's much easier to customize it to fit your brand. Also, once you know the rules you can break them in ways that suit your purpose and drive engagement.

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