Finding ways to keep social media channels fresh and engaging is difficult over a long period of time. You may feel as though you’ve run out of ideas and new things to say about your business.
We’ve been keeping our clients’ social media packed with content for a few years now, so we’ve developed a couple of tricks to finding new inspiration.
Read, read, read
Read magazines and books. Pick out anything that seems exciting to you. The more you read, the more ideas you will come across. Be ready to note them down in a Google Doc or other note-taking software so you’ve got them ready when you come to planning. The secondary benefit of this is that you get to know different tones of voice and how your target customer speaks so you can pitch your content accordingly.
Watch out for new trends
You can’t beat yourself up for not being the first to come up with a new idea – Most are either borrowed or adapted from something that already exists. Ensure you’re active on your own personal social media accounts so you are exposing yourself to lots of content. See what you’re enjoying from other people and think of ways to incorporate it into your own social media calendar.
Spy on your competitors
What are your competitors posting that’s getting lots of engagement? Is it questions? Is it polls? Are they recording lots of Facebook Lives that get thousands of comments? Without copying their exact idea, see how you can use those same types of posts to generate new engagement among your own fans.
Recycle and reuse
For some reason, business owners think you can only post about something one time and then that idea has been used up forever. If that’s the case, then why do we constantly hear the same ad on the radio? Why don’t advertisers create a new ad each time they broadcast? Could it be that we don’t always hear the ad the first time it goes out? Could it also be that we need to hear the same message time and time again to remember it, and therefore act?
“Oh, but that’s for actual ads, that’s different. What about entertaining content? People don’t want to see those posts more than once”
Okay. Then, why do people constantly watch repeats of Friends after they’ve memorised the entire script? Do Star Wars aficionados only ever watch films one time?
If it’s good content, it will always be good content.
Television is the paragon of great content. Programmers are not afraid to repeat great content and are also very consistent with the types of content they put out, e.g. news at ten o’clock, sport on a Saturday afternoon, entertainment shows on Saturday evening. Have you noticed how Mondays are always very serious with documentaries whereas Friday nights are more fun and light-hearted? Why don’t we apply this to our own content channels?
TV is also a great source of new ideas. You can take ideas from game shows, record your own mini programmes on your phone, or you can use your channel as a way to start a conversation about something that everyone’s been watching.
Always be curious
The curious person (almost) never runs out of ideas. If you’re observant of life, you’ll see inspiration everywhere. If you need to take a walk, pop into a shop or buy yourself a slice of cake, just do it. Nurture all your senses and follow up on whatever piques your interest at any given moment. Keep a notebook handy so you can jot thoughts or ideas down.
Everything you do is a story
It might seem boring to you, but if you’re visiting a new city or customer or your factory, take a picture. If your intern has passed her driving test, post her photo and congratulate her. Let people in a little on what your day looks like. This is especially important if you work directly with clients on a daily basis, for example, if you deliver workshops or run a care company. People want to see what will happen after they sign up.
Use Your Plan!
There’s nothing that kills inspiration more than having to come up with the goods daily.
Once you’ve followed the tips above and made lots of notes, it’s time to plan it out. Get your calendar (We recommend paper-based at this stage) or use post-its and a wall, and start moving these ideas around until you’ve got a healthy plan in place. Then you can transfer it to Trello or Excel to refer to when you’ve forgotten your good ideas.
Now it’s time to start creating. Good luck!
If you’re stuck for ideas and need a team to bounce ideas off, then you can enlist the Bold team for a social media workshop. Drop us a line to find out more.