Have you noticed that the key to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+ and Pinterest is the “sharing” of content. It’s the backbone of Social Media. Here are 5 ways to make your content “Shareable” so that your followers and readers will be more likely to Retweet, Re-pin and Share it.
KEEP IT SHORT
We live in a time-poor, fast moving world where everyone thinks in sound bytes. Be that a good or a bad thing, keep at least some of your status updates short on Facebook. Same goes for Pinterest and Google+. On Twitter it is a no-brainer (always keep to 120 characters or less to allow 20 characters for “retweeting” your content by one of your followers). The quicker people can read your post, the quicker they can decide whether they want to click through, read your link or share your photo or video.
Hot Tip: I go through phases of having Facebook linked to Twitter. Just be careful with it, as it depends on how much you are posting on Facebook every day, how much you are posting out from Twitter, and how long your posts are. It can be too much, even for your Twitter feed. Once you start engaging more on Twitter, consider switching Facebook>Twitter Feed off. Oh and NEVER do it in the opposite direction (ie Twitter to Facebook) as Twitter posts don’t make much sense to many Facebook Users.
KEEP IT VISUAL
There is no doubting that visual information is more readily shared. On Facebook, Photos and Video on other social media platforms…purely because they are visual, simple and engaging. Use photos or images wherever you can and consider joining Pinterest or Instagram or both. Mix up your images on Twitter and Facebook. Try to make your images:
- Simple. Don’t overcomplicate them. Remember a picture tells a thousand words. If you add text, keep it short.
- Powerful. Use wow factor – whether it by colour, the words that you use, and the clarity or design of the image.
- Emotive. Use meaning or images to ignite emotion in your followers. Make them want to hit the Re-tweet or Re-pin button. Take advantage of that human nature we have to share!
- Funny. If it makes them laugh out loud, the are more likely to share.
This “Visual Quote” from my client Carren Smith is emotive, simple and powerful. Shared on Facebook as part of an online chat, it was a great way to add value to Carren’s community. Be Shareable.
The above example shows the perfect shareable, visual photo. As part of a Facebook experience, I have worked with Carren Smith (International Speaker & Mentor) on her regular EMPOWER HOUR Chats, live on Facebook. These “chats” or “Facebook Experiences” are a wonderful engagement strategy that was inspired by the brilliant advice of Amy Porterfield. At the end of each chat, we post up an image for participants to share – an easy way to encourage engagement, while highlighting Carren’s brand and her personality. Stay tuned – more exciting tips about shareable images and engagement strategies are coming soon on our blog!
KEEP IT TRACEABLE
Create original content and load it on to your website. If you don’t have a public page that suits, set up a page in your website backend to host the photos. Call it “Images for Download” or “Inspiring Quotes” – just make sure that if it is your original content – and that is hosted on your website (not Facebook or Twitter!). This will ensure that your website URL is attached to the image or content so that traffic is driven back to your website when it is clicked on (and when shared). Your website is of course where your blogposts live, so traffic will always come back from any shared blogposts. Think about posting some original images on your website too. If you “store” photos or images on your website, anyone that wishes to look at the source content of Pin on Pinterest, will come back to your website. The same goes for Twitter (when you Tweet out about a link or attach an image). Traffic. Traffic. Traffic.
Hot Tip: If you are Pinning on Pinterest, ensure that you include the URL of the actual page on your website and not just your home page. To do this, go to the Pin and click on EDIT and make sure that your Pin includes the full URL. f you are a photographer or designer, it is a good idea to include a watermark on your image with your website linked – even if very faint. That way you don’t have to worry about your image being mis-used and you can still benefit from viral sharing! See the example below for how a watermark can be added subtly, while adding the benefit of always showing the source of the image.
KEEP IT MYSTERIOUS
Draw them in. Be cryptic. Tease.
When posting your post, don’t just include the name of the link and make it obvious about what the article is. Be creative – draw out something intriguing from the link and make your audience WANT to click on the link – make them feel like they will be MISSING OUT if they don’t click on the link. Make them wonder about what the link is really about. Make them want to click. Here are some examples of how to create some intrigue by using a combination of Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.
KEEP IT CONNECTED
Don’t just think about where you put our own original content – pay the same courtesy to others! Always try to respect the source of photos or images pinned, posted or shared by others. Use these tips when sharing:
- Tag the person and thank them for their content when sharing (even if it is not their “original” given them a “hat tip” and a thank you for sharing the content with you. Pay it forward. I like it when I see that someone has acknowledged the original source – it makes me want to share it too.
- When pinning on Pinterest, check the pin first. Click through it to the source and see if it is pinned from a reputable source. If it is from google docs or tumblr then I would recommend considering not pinning – you do not know if the photo or image comes with permission to share. Try to only pin images that go back to a valid source.
- Be aware of those pins that actually lead you to a totally different website. Don’t repin information that is misleading. Take a moment to check the source. If a pin is repinned on Pinterest and has a dubious source, it may be marked as spam. Check first and avoid any hassles.
Have you found any new ideas in this post? If you use them, please let me know – I would love to see what you do with it. What is your favourite way to share?