The Most Powerful Tactic You Should Be Using on Social Media
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Everyone loves a good story. Around the glow of a midnight campfire or lounging around the dinner table after a plentiful meal - it’s stories that fill the silence and bring people closer. It’s the ultimate way to elicit emotions, to connect with others, and to say something that will stick.
Every story has a basic plan it follows, a recognized structure that marks a beginning, middle, and end, but more than that - a story always hosts the same set of characters. A hero, a villain, a guide or mentor, and they all work together to pull the audience in, to weave a magic on us that makes it so we want to know more.
Your social media feed is an opportunity to tell your brand story. Stories are immediately identifiable to the human brain. Since we like to be entertained, we can quickly recognize when a story is happening. It doesn't have to be epic, but the little puzzle pieces of information that come through each post help to fill in the information for the story around your brand that each customer is building every time they interact with you.
Are you helping them build that story? If all your posts are sales-y and every post is just another avenue for a purchase, you're missing out on the power of social media. It's not to sell. It's to build a story. Since every story needs CHARACTERS, you, the business owner, are one of those characters. Without you, your feed turns from one building a story of a business here to help your customer and engage their human qualities, into one that is just out to make another sale -- vying for clicks to their website and hoping someone makes a purchase.
Take for example an image posted of a blanket and captioned “See how soft my hand-knitted chunky blanket is! Swipe up to purchase!" How does that make you feel? Meh.
Now imagine someone posted a picture of themselves knitting a blanket in a chair. It’s the same type of blanket, but this one shows the maker in the photo and it’s captioned with the story about how knitting has been a family affair for generations and she was taught by her great grandmother to knit and so she built a business off of making handmade-with-love blankets like she used to with her grandma.
Whoa! That’s way more powerful than just a "click to purchase." THIS is what people miss about social media. People need to see you and they need to be given a story.
Give them a character: show up in your feed.
I don’t mean engagement or putting in the work (I know you’ve been working hard!). I mean actual pictures of you within your grid. Social media is the place to mingle with your peeps, to engage and casually converse with your potential customers. They need to know who YOU are in order to feel comfortable doing that.
It’s hard for people to connect with just a logo or the concept of a business.
People like talking to other people; it’s human psychology. It’s why we can easily spot faces in cloud formations or in crazy patterns within wallpaper. Humans seek out humans. It is this very reason why we love stories - they always feature, you guessed it, other humans. By giving your audience a face to connect with, you’re not only building a relationship with them, but you’re also humanizing your brand.
If you’re new to the whole idea of showing up in your feed, of posting in Instagram stories, or showing up on Facebook Lives, I’ve got a few tips to get you started:
First, batch out a few photos of yourself.
You can either hire a photographer or simply put on some makeup, throw on your favorite outfit, go out for coffee and have a friend snap a few photos of you then. You can also start by saving those fabulous selfies you take yourself! Make a folder on your phone to start saving these in one place so they don’t get lost.
If you don’t know what to say when you post a photo of yourself, try answering any of these prompts:
Why did you start a business?
What do you love about your business?
What are your clients like? What do you love most about them?
What makes you different?
What do you believe in when it comes to your area of expertise?
What were you doing in this photo? Right beforehand? Right afterwards?
What frustrates you about your industry?
What change would you love to achieve for your clients?
What insecurities do you have? How has that made you a better person?
What are your dreams? What keeps you up at night?
Anything that will help you start to carve out a story about you and your brand will be great starting points for these types of posts. Whatever you do, don’t be afraid to be yourself and tell your story. It’s timeless advice. I promise you that your story is far more compelling than the next guy’s who's only posting about "how this scarf/carpet/chair/product/service will CHANGE YOUR LIFE."
Things don't change lives. Things don't make a difference. People do. Show them that.
Your social media is an opportunity to show your customers that they are more than just a way for you to make money. Prove to them that you are more than just a business and that you care about them as people and that your mission is to help them.
Because you know what? You are.
No more trial and error. No more hours long brainstorm sessions.
Download your FREE Social Media Marketing Kit!
Download your Social Media Marketing Kit now!
About The Author >>
Meet Ashley Burnside
Ashley Burnside helps small business owners grow their businesses by connecting them to their customers and top fans using social media and strategic email marketing.
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I’m Alex, the Brand Consultant + lady behind LCC. I’m so glad you’re here. Settle in, get comfy, and get ready to learn some serious biz tips from top biz babes from around the world! Learn more…
Download the FREE Social Media Marketing Kit now!