By Diana Gomez
These days, it’s not enough to post a picture of what your business has been up to this week.
Sure, some customers may find interest in which food truck is parked at the office today, but that’s not the kind of thing that will go viral.
To move up the ranks in Google, you need as many eyes on your pages as possible. This means the content must be eye-catching! Think about creating headlines that leave the readers hanging; make them want to click to find out what’s coming next. Let their curiosity lead them further into your website.
As far as the content inside the post, here are a few ideas for you. These types of posts must be in your regular rotation if you want to keep up with the rest of the web in the second half of 2014.
Photo tutorials are superb, but audiences are really going nuts for comprehensive video tutorials.
Do you have something you can teach your customers? Whether you’re a retail clothing business with advice on sewing buttons or a hairstylist who can teach customers how to create a topknot, a how-to video is a terrific tool to draw some attention to your business.
Videos can also go viral simply from their entertainment value. As long as it’s funny or out-of-the-ordinary, it’s worth talking about. Be sure it’s high-quality and only one or two-minutes long.
It’s rare that a five or ten-minute video goes viral like a short-and-sweet video will. Also, be sure you place keywords into the title and description. Hosting it on YouTube will ensure that your video will be easy to share on social media, because going viral is all about making it easy for users to get to the content.
Ever hear of a little website called Buzzfeed? This site has blown up over the past year as audiences increasingly latch onto the short-and-sweet visual concept. Lists organize information in a way that makes it easier to absorb, and our brains seem to love clicking on headlines like “Five Foods that are Making You Fat.”
Our noggins naturally want to make sense of any information that’s presented to us, and so when some of the work has already been done, the decision to click is a ‘no-brainer.’ It’s such a phenomenon that the parody site The Onion has just created a new parody site having a laugh at Buzzfeed – cleverly titled Clickhole. One funny headline example is “16 Pictures of BeyoncÃ© Where She’s Not Sinking in Quicksand.” There’s a reason why everyone (ahem, see title of this very blog post) is jumping on the list-making bandwagon, and you should, too.
Everyone’s a sucker for free stuff, and that’s why you should be offering your readers incentives for clicking through to your site. Spend ten minutes on Facebook and you’ll likely encounter a slew of contests, all of which require some sort of interaction on social media to win. Examples: someone shares a musician’s Facebook status for a chance to win a record box set. An interior design firm blogs about an author and offers its readers a chance to win the author’s latest book if they “like” the author’s Facebook page and leave a comment below the firm’s blog post (which is a clever double-win for two parties).
By asking users to share and follow you, you’re making yourself visible to entirely new audiences/friends of people who already like you. And when there’s a free offer involved, your posts are all-the-more attractive. Asking a like-minded blog to offer its readers your product will almost always be accepted with open arms. The blog’s readers like it, therefore the blogger loves it, too. It’s a simple concept, but it works, and it’s fun.
The success of Instagram and Pinterest prove that what people want is a beautiful photo (or ten) to gaze upon. High-quality cameras can be found on most phones nowadays, which is super fortunate for us amateurs. Filters galore are available now that can turn an ‘OK’ image into something interesting that people will want to like and post elsewhere.
Do you cook? Post your creations to your blog, and make sure your posts have the Pinterest Pin option available. To make a pic extra Pinterest-friendly, post one collaged image that includes something like a four-step (and four-photo) recipe. Again, users are in search of the short-and-sweet and the quick-and-easy stuff.
Are you a mechanic? Post cool photos of vintage cars to your business’ Instagram account. Be sure a link to your blog is obvious on your profile so that users can see what other content you can offer them. Use appropriate hashtags that will help interested users find you, and while you’re at it, go ahead and tap the Twitter icon to simultaneously reach another social media medium. Every little bit helps, right?
What social-media medium works best with your business?
Image licensed via Shutterstock