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SMBs use big data analytics on social media marketing, as well as to find ways to reduce costs, increase products and inform general business decision-making.How to create a social media strategy with big data
The most successful social media strategies match what your customers and the outside world are telling you. Consider taking the five following steps to create your company’s social media strategy:1. Find out what the general public thinks of your brand.
To hear what the wider world is saying about your brand and its products and services, consider investing in a social customer relationship management (CRM) solution. Many CRM packages include or offer social listening tools as an add-on that you can use to track social media trends.
Set your CRM to watch out for mentions of your brand and its products and services. Track what people are saying about your competitors too. The unstructured data it gathers is then passed through AI so you can see which products consumers are excited about and share with their friends on social media. [Read related article: The Best CRM Software]2. Get whole-market insights from both social media and customer data.
To start, the unstructured data you’ve got from your social CRM software should be related to the structured data already available, like the customer details, to derive actionable insights with big data. From there, you can create a social media strategy based on the insights obtained. Figure out the best possible strategy that encompasses the key factors to bring out consumer-driven results.3. Create content based on your insights.
With the strategy in place, now is the time to create the content. Come up with material that will resonate with your customers. Since content is crucial in the success of your strategy, it is important to spend time drafting it.4. Choose your target audience.
When the content is ready, it is time to pinpoint the customers. From the results of the analysis performed earlier, you can identify and reach your target market.5. Run your campaign and analyze the results.
Lastly, it is time for execution. Armed with the right content from the analysis, you can check the effectiveness of the strategy.
When your social media strategy has been executed, analyze it, gain insights and use it to refine the process. That is the most important result to glean from the social media campaigns or strategies implemented.
While big data can help you get better campaign results, don’t forget the 5:3:2 rule for social media. You need to create a mix of content to keep your followers engaged and interested. If you use most of your posts to sell, you’re likely to lose followers.The importance of big data
Social media marketing is still worth it despite recent dips in engagement on platforms such as Facebook and Instagram. Big data has made marketing analytics more about future predictions and the effects of the current strategies in the future. Predictive analysis is gaining popularity with the marketers, and big data plays a huge role in it.
Not only can marketers predict the behavior of consumers, but they can also use the conclusions from their data analysis in various other indirect marketing methods, like split testing. The right analysis and adoption of big data will ensure that the strategy hits the target and boosts ROI significantly.
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Most of us are already using social media in our personal lives. You could even say we’ve come to rely on it as a primary method of communication for keeping us in touch with a wider network of friends, family, and acquaintances that would be possible without it.
While you might not be able to go an entire day, or even a few hours, without checking in on your social accounts, there’s an untapped potential of social media that you might not be aware of.
We’re talking about the potential of social media to help you land the job of your dreams or at least one that will move you out of your current career rut.
It’s estimated that 92 percent of recruiters turn to social media to discover new talent.
But, there’s a little bit of preparation that needs to be done on your part if you want to be one of the people they discover.
To help you out, we’ve put together five tips to help you use social media to get the job you want and deserve.1. Position Yourself to Be the Candidate Recruiters are Looking For
Before going too much into strategy, let’s take a step back and touch on the basics, like optimizing your profile for job hunting success.
While statistics tell us that the majority of companies are using social media for employee recruitment, the other side of this is that 70 percent of employers are also using social media to weed out prospects and 54 percent of them have decided to reject candidates based on what they find on personal social profiles.
So, what’s a job-seeking social media user to do?
Clean yourself up, the same way you would for an interview.Google Yourself
First, Google yourself to find out how much digital dirt you’ve left around the Internet (it might surprise you!).
Clean up as many of those incriminating photos and grumpy status updates as you can.
Don’t forget, hiring managers can’t view what you don’t give them access to. Make sure that you have your profile set to friends only, and this includes the remaining posts and images that might be several years old.Add the Right Details
Add important details that are key to appearing professional like:
A professional looking profile picture.
A mention that you’re currently seeking a career opportunity in your profile description.
A link to your resume on your about page is key to appearing professional.
Also, pay attention to those parts of your profile that are often visible to the general public:
Your activity in public groups.
Reviews that you leave for businesses.
A prospective employer is going to pay attention to every bit of information that they can access.Don’t Lose Control Over Who Sees Your Content
Additionally, be wary of “friending” co-workers of any type. More importantly, before friending a co-worker, check to see what other coworkers they might have in their network.
It can be easy to forget about that one quiet, random coworker on social media when you have hundreds of friends.
Just because they’re out of sight and out of mind doesn’t mean that they’re not paying attention and reporting what they see.2. Investigate Employers’ Pages
Social media is an expansive playing field, and if you want to land a job that you’re going to be great at then it’s necessary to narrow it down – by a lot.
Step one is recognizing the companies in your industry that have a major presence on social media. Do this even you have your sights set on a local, smaller business culture.
The reason is that many smaller businesses also connect on social media with the big players in their industry, so doing this serves as a starting point for putting yourself out there and networking.
Something else that’s important to recognize at this point is which social platforms employers in your industry or niche are using themselves.
Once you’ve discovered where businesses in your industry or niche are and have started following them, then it’s time to shine, and this is all about engagement.3. Shine & Get Noticed
Next, we’re going to talk about how you can be the one that stands out in the crowd.
The first rule of the game is to engage.
It can be intimidating approaching a job search through social media, especially if you’re starting with a nonexistent professional network.
However, the audience on social media is so large that you can’t just polish your profile and hope for the best.
Job seekers need to be proactive. This means you must amp up your engagement (and your creativity).Twitter Is a Gold Mine
There are countless stories of hungry job-seekers who found their dream job through Twitter. And it makes sense.
Did I mention there are also Twitter handles dedicated to helping job seekers? From @CareerBuilder to @UndercoverRec there are countless job experts, recruiters and job search handles to follow.Create Your Own Hashtag
Sometimes a little creativity goes a long way.
One job-seeker was focused on combining his love for travel with his newly acquired master’s degree in marketing.
So, he created his own hashtag #hire_tom and began reaching out to businesses that aligned with his goals.Ditch the Paper Resume Altogether
Like this guy …Don’t Forget About Facebook
While not as widely used as Twitter and LinkedIn, if you’re spending time on Facebook why not give the job portal a try?
This should default to your local area, but can be adjusted as needed.
And, should you find that dream drop, you can apply directly through Facebook – though only the basics of your personal information are shared.Join Groups
Commenting regularly, though not obsessively, on a company’s posts is a good place to start but joining and becoming active in relevant groups is even better.
If you have your heart set on working for a specific company, you can start by seeking out any groups that may focus on them or the service they provide.
Otherwise, start with industry related groups including those specifically targeted for job seekers that recruiters might see as a smorgasbord of prospects.
Then don’t be shy. Put yourself out there and engage. Introduce yourself, ask questions, be responsive and – most importantly – be helpful.
When you’re consistently responding in an insightful and helpful way you’re going to catch the eye of recruiters looking to add value to their team.4. Get Some Endorsements
You know how reviews are one of the first things you look at when checking out a new brand online?
Recruiters looking to connect with new talent really aren’t that different.
While it’s true that if they’re really interested they’ll put in the work to connect and learn more about you, but with such a competitive pool for them to choose from, the easier you make it for them to learn how great you are the better.
Professional networking social media sites like LinkedIn let you include endorsements on your profile.
Whether you think they’re dumb or not, the majority of recruiters do look at them as a signal that can influence or reinforce a close decision.
What’s great about endorsements or reviews is that interested parties can usually easily check their sources, so that gleaming recommendation by the head of HR from the last company you worked for stands out as a legit testimony of the quality of your work and contributions to the company.
What to do if you’re new to the game and haven’t earned any endorsements yet?
Go out and ask for them!
This includes contacting past clients, employers, professors or anyone that you’ve had a positive professional experience with.
It’s best if they’re mostly industry or niche focused, but if you’re trying to break into a new career it’s completely acceptable to showcase a little praise from other areas of your professional expertise.
Here’s a great email template from HubSpot that will help with those requests:
Hi [first name],
I hope all is well with you. I recently came across this ebook on [topic they care about] that I thought would interest you:
[link to content asset]
You’ll find section X particularly valuable.
I really enjoyed working with you on/at [project/company], and I was wondering if you would write a brief LinkedIn recommendation of my work. I’d love it if you could touch on Y initiative and our collaboration on Z. Just three to five sentences is all I’m after.
I know a recommendation from you will significantly elevate my profile. I greatly appreciate your time, and hope to hear from you soon.
[your name]5. Remember Your Etiquette
The digital age has drastically changed how we communicate with each other, even in business.
Considering this, it’s easy to slip up on a few of the rules of modern business etiquette, especially the unwritten ones.
For example, networking to put yourself in front of a potential employer or client is great.
Flat out asking them for a job? Not so much.
Approach job inquiries in much the same way you would if you were meeting them face to face.
Introduce yourself and express interest but avoid “hounding” or obsessively inquiring about opportunities.
Instead, once you’ve introduced yourself just continue to engage and present yourself as a knowledgeable and valuable resource to their customer base without going over the top.
Likewise, keep business-related communications away from social media as much as possible.
For example, a social media direct message isn’t the place to drop your CV unless the company has specifically asked you to do so.
Often times, the people managing social media communications aren’t the ones in charge of recruiting so not only can employment-related messages be seen as inappropriate, it’s also likely that you’re creating a longer process of getting your message to the right person.Start Preparing for the Job of Your Dreams
One of the greatest things about social media is that it connects you to an ever-expanding network of people.
All it takes is one of those people to help you find your next great job.
You never know when an opportunity might knock, so now is the time to make sure you’re prepared when it does.
Using these five tips can help put you in a position of authority when recruiters come looking.
There’s an incredible world of career opportunities out there waiting for you, and social media is the tool that can help connect you to it.
Screenshots taken by Jon Clark, September 2023
Learn what social shopping is and why you should make it a cornerstone of your ecommerce strategy in 2023 and beyond.
Social shopping has been growing steadily since 2023. People want easy, accessible, and convenient shopping experiences on their mobile devices. They want to shop within the moment of discovery. Basically, they want to shop on social media.
But, have you ever asked yourself, what is social shopping? Why do I need it, and how do I do it?
In this article, you’ll learn what social shopping is and why you should make it a cornerstone of your ecommerce strategy. We’ll walk you through how your social shop works on different platforms and some tips to get you raking in sales.
Bonus: Learn how to sell more products on social media with our free Social Commerce 101 guide. Delight your customers and improve conversion rates.
What is social shopping?
Social shopping refers to the selling and buying of products directly on social media. With social shopping, complete transactions take place without leaving the social network app.
Why use social shopping?
There’s no doubt that the demand for easy and instant online shopping is growing. And, with that demand comes potential.
Statista reports that worldwide social commerce generated roughly 724 billion USD in revenue in 2023. They go on to say the expected annual growth is 30.8% from 2023 to 2030, so “revenues in this segment are forecast to reach approximately 6.2 trillion dollars in the latter year.”
A 2023 survey saw 29% of global respondents who purchased something they saw on a social media platform from the platform itself. That’s a lot of potential sales you’re missing out on if you’re not engaging customers and using social media in your ecommerce strategy.
How does social shopping work on different networks?
Now, your social shops show up a little differently depending on the platform you’re using. Here’s what you need to know about the big four: Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and TikTok.Instagram Shopping
Instagram Shopping is an ecommerce feature on Instagram’s platform that lets people social shop. It allows people to discover and purchase products through photo and video posts.
How it works:
Setting up your Instagram shop is pretty easy. Once your storefront is live, and your product catalog is uploaded, you can add product tags to photos and videos.
You can also engage with influencers and utilize user-generated content to promote your products for you. By allowing other people to tag your products, you can increase your reach and influence purchasing decisions.
True social shopping is only available to eligible US business and creator accounts. Right now, Instagram only allows certain accounts in the US to add in-app checkout features to their Instagram shops. Instagram Shops, however, is available across the globe, specifically for businesses in these markets.
Instagram Shop has a ton of great ecommerce features for your digital store, like:
Shops: Your customizable storefront allows people to shop on your profile.
Shopping tags: These tags feature products from your catalog. They let customers purchase directly from your website or on Instagram (if you’re eligible).
Shop in Explore: People can now browse posts with Shopping tags in the Explore section.
Collections: You can curate products into collections to help your customers find what they’re looking for.
Product detail page: This page tells the consumer what they need to know about the product, like pricing or descriptions. Instagram pulls these details from your product catalog, so make sure you fill that out properly.
For businesses that are eligible to use Checkout, you also have access to:
Product launches: Announce your pending product launch on Instagram to build hype! Here, people can preview details about the launch and create purchase reminders.
Shopping partner permissions: You can give your Instagram partners permission to tag your products or link to your shop. This can help you to increase your reach.Facebook Shopping
Facebook Shopping is an ecommerce feature on Facebook’s platform. It allows creators and businesses to engage in social shopping. It’s a lot like Instagram Shopping, which is no surprise since Meta owns both platforms.
How it works:
So long as you have a Facebook Page you want to sell from and a business account, you’re golden. Setting up your Facebook shop is simple. From there, you can update your product catalog and customize your Facebook shop.
To use Facebook Shops, you need to comply with Facebook’s commerce eligibility requirements and be in a supported market. Luckily, these can be all over the globe; here’s a full list of Facebook-supported markets.
To make the most of your Facebook Shopping experience, you’ll want to look into how your Facebook Commerce Manager account can work for you.
Collections: You can customize your product collections to make it easier for customers to find what they’re looking for.
Advertising: Add a Custom Audience to your ad campaigns to reach people who are already interested in your shop.
Insights: Commerce Manager will show you insight into your Facebook Shop’s performance. With it, you can better optimize your eCommerce offering.
Exposure: Your products may appear in popular shopping centers on Facebook like Marketplace.
Direct Messages across platforms: Shops can access Messenger, Instagram Direct, and soon WhatsApp. This way, your customers can access you in many different places.Pinterest Shopping
Pinterest is the OG powerhouse of online shopping. It’s a visually-dominated, product-first platform. And, Pinterest’s organizational style and strong algorithm keep serving its fans. They report 80% more in sales per month compared to other social platforms.
Truly, Pinterest has some impressive stats. As an online seller, you don’t want to sleep on this app.
How it works:
You’ll want to set up your Pinterest shopping account by joining the verified Merchant Program. From there, it’s a matter of uploading your products, setting up your Product Pins, and customizing your shop.
Pinterest shopping is available in many countries; see the full list here.
One thing to note, Pinterest’s social shopping is not available to most merchants and buyers. There are certain eligible US-based merchants that can check out in the Pinterest app. US buyers can find the Buy Button below a Pin (it’s blue!) if they’re eligible. For the most part, however, Pinterest will send you to the merchant’s ecommerce site to complete the purchase.
Product Pins: These pins stand out from regular, unshoppable pins because they have a price listed in the corner. They show off your product details, including a special title and description, price, and stock availability.
Shoppable Lens: This feature is a bit like Googling images. You take a photo of a physical product, then Pinterest shows you similar products.
Shopping List: When people save products to their boards, they are automatically added to that person’s Shopping List.
Shop in Search: Some eligible regions allow users to search in a Shop-specific category. Your shoppable products will automatically show up here.
Shop Spotlights: Spotlights can feature your product prominently, getting it in front of more viewers. Spotlights are chosen by fashion bloggers, writers, and editors, so keep optimizing your product page and hope for the best.TikTok Shopping
A TikTok Shop is an ecommerce feature integrated into TikTok’s platform. This feature makes selling products on TikTok possible. And, with 24 billion views and counting, the hashtag #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt alone makes for a pretty good argument to get sellin’ on the app.
How it works:
You can set up your own TikTok shop if you meet the app’s requirements. Once that’s done, it’s as easy as optimizing your product catalog and promoting your products.
TikTok shopping features:
TikTok Shopping API (coming soon!)
Third-party partner integration like Shopify, Square, Ecwid, and PrestaShop
You can include your product links on videos
8 quick tips for selling products with social shopping
Now that you’re a social shopping pro, it’s time to create or refresh and refine your social shopping strategy. Here are eight quick tips for selling your products!Image is everything
Use high-quality images. People are visually oriented, so make sure your product photos are clear and attractive. Be sure to use bright, well-lit images that showcase your products in the best possible light.Answer ‘what is this and why do I want it?’ in your product description
Use engaging descriptions. In addition to listing the facts about your product, use language that will capture people’s attention and make them want to learn more. Clear and concise product descriptions with benefits over features should do the trick.
Don’t try to pack too much information into each description. Instead, focus on making it easy for potential customers to know what your product is and why they need it.Discounts and deals
Offer discounts and deals. Deals and discounts were a top motivation for online shoppers in 2023. 37% of people said discounts and deals were their deciding factors. Be sure to promote your deal on your page!Make it easy to buy Have competitive pricing
Make sure your pricing is in-line with the industry standards. Take a look at prices on similar social shopping sellers’ pages. Then, price your products accordingly.Promote, promote, promote!
Stay active on social media. The more you post about your products, the more likely people are to see them and make a purchase. Keep your social media pages updated regularly for the best results.
Get a free 30-day Hootsuite trialUse social media marketing tools for a leg up Use a social media chatbot
Provide excellent customer service. Respond quickly to questions and concerns, and do everything you can to ensure that your customers are happy during the buying process. One life-saving hack for impeccable customer service? Get a social media chatbot like Heyday.
Heyday is a conversational ai chatbot, that can automatically answer all your customer’s FAQs and queries, saving your team time and money.
Engage with shoppers on social media and turn customer conversations into sales with Heyday, our dedicated conversational AI chatbot for social commerce retailers. Deliver 5-star customer experiences — at scale.
Get a free Heyday Demo
Turn customer service conversations into sales with Heyday. Improve response times and sell more products. See it in action.
Find out how to build an effective social media content creation process and learn about the tools that will make creating content easier.
Social media content creation is the basis of every social media strategy. Without content, there is nothing to post, like, share, or analyze — and it’s impossible to promote products or services online.
Creating content for social media can be anything from writing a catchy caption all the way through to designing a major integrated social campaign with a large team and multiple influencers.
For either of these options, or anything in between, you need a content marketing strategy to develop great content effectively, and content creation tools to do so efficiently. We’ll guide you through all of that in this post.
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Start free 30-day trialWhat is content creation?
Content creation is the process of creating content. But what does this mean, exactly?
Just about anything can be content, from blog posts to TikToks to whitepapers and even books. Basically, content is anything that provides information or entertainment. For marketers and brands, content creation is an important way to build and maintain relationships with potential customers.
Let’s look at all the potential elements that can be involved in turning your ideas into content for social media specifically.What is social media content creation?
Social media content creation isis the process of creating written content, photography, graphics, and videos for different social media platforms.
Social media content has to fit within prescribed limits for character counts, image sizes, and video lengths. You have to cram a lot of value into a very small space.
It’s also important to note that social media content creation is much more interactive than other forms of content creation. You don’t create content in a bubble. Whether you’re highlighting user-generated content, creating a TikTik Stitch, or using trending audio to guide your content ideas, you’re part of a larger ecosystem.
Here are some of the elements involved in social media content creation. (We’ll dive deeper into how all of these roles work together to form your social media content strategy in the next section.)
Research: Checking on the latest social media trends and using social listening and social media analytics to get a sense of what kind of content your social audience craves.
Writing: Putting words on the screen — from headlines and video overlay text through to copy for longer posts on Facebook or LinkedIn.
Photography/videography: Capturing photos and/or video footage, like product shots or behind-the-scenes tours. This could involve professional equipment, but depending on your needs, it can also be done with a smartphone.
Video editing: Compiling clips into a finished product.
Graphic design: Combining words and graphics into a meme, infographic, highlight cover, or any other visual that you use on social media.
Let’s put those ideas into action!
1. Do your research
Any good process starts with research. Sure, everything is content, but that doesn’t mean you can just post whatever you want on your social channels and call it a day.
Before you start creating content, you need to know what kind of content resonates with your audience, or your potential target audience.
If you already have a solid following on your social channels, you can start with your social media analytics. These will help you understand what’s already working for you, so that you can model this success.
But social changes fast, so you can’t limit your research to your owned accounts. Social listening is a good way to get a sense of what’s happening in your industry, and what people are talking about when they talk about your business on social media.
Finally, keep an eye on trending hashtags, topics, and audio. You won’t necessarily want to jump on every trend that comes along, but you’ll spot some good digital content creation ideas that may help your content achieve greater engagement and wider reach.
2. Set goals
Now that you have a sense of what’s happening in your industry, you can start to set some goals for your social media content. Are you trying to drive people to your blog? Grow your following? Make sales through social commerce? Maybe all of the above?
The kind of content you create will vary based on what you want it to achieve. For instance, your call to action will be quite different for a sales post versus a post designed to build brand awareness and engagement.
It’s a good idea to get specific with your goals using the SMART goal-setting framework. This forces you to think in detail about what you can achieve with your social content, and how you might get to where you want to be.
3. Have a creative brainstorm
Whether you’re a one-person shop or you have a large social team, take some time to get some ideas up on the whiteboard. (It doesn’t matter whether the actual whiteboard is literal or metaphorical, just that you gather all of your ideas in one place).
This is “no bad ideas” time. Everyone on your team has unique experiences with social, both personally and professionally, that will inform their content ideas and expectations. Allowing everyone to share freely brings all of that knowledge into your shared braintrust, where it can morph into high-quality social content campaigns.
4. Assign roles
Remember all those components of social media content creation we mentioned above? If you haven’t already got team members assigned to each of those tasks, the time to do so is now.
It’s also time to set up a solid social media approval process, so everyone understands where their work fits into the overall picture, and how their deadlines impact the rest of the team.
If you are a small business owner, you may not have anyone to assign roles to. Don’t panic! Remember, everything is content. You can definitely start out by creating all of your content on your own. It doesn’t have to be complicated or take up a lot of your time.
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Even large teams don’t have to do everything themselves. This is a good time to think about whether you want to outsource some digital content creation tasks to freelance writers or designers. You should also think about how to source and incorporate user-generated content, and how to include curated content in your social media marketing strategy.
Finally, consider whether you want to work with outside content creators — aka influencers. This could be for a specific campaign, or an ongoing relationship.
5. Build a content calendar
A social media content calendar allows you to plan your content mix across social channels, so you get the most value from your digital content creation efforts.
We’ve created a content calendar template to help you plan how to use content resources across your social accounts. For example, say you want to drive social traffic to a new blog post. You can use your content calendar to plan out when to post the relevant Facebook post, TikTok, and Instagram Reel.
Your content calendar should also include your ongoing content needs. For example, every week Hootsuite shares a roundup of the week’s blog posts on Instagram Stories.
Here’s how to set up your content calendar using our free template.
6. Schedule your content
Once you’ve filled in your content calendar, it’s time to set your content up for publishing. Sure, you could post each post manually at the assigned time, but that’s a huge time-waster that also sets you up to make simple mistakes like typos and broken links.
7. Build your content library
There’s no need to create every piece of social content from scratch. On your busiest days, you’ll thank yourself for having the foresight to create a content library.
Any successful social post can be made into a template for future posts. You can also add approved images to your content library, whether those are created in-house or acquired from a royalty-free resource.
As your content library grows, you’ll have more options for creating new social content without recreating the wheel.
8. Analyze your results
The content creation process ends back where it started. Analyze your results to see what worked and what didn’t, and use your findings to guide your research and planning into what to do next.
Set some new goals and do it all again.
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Start free 30-day trial8 time-saving content creation tools for social media managers
Hootsuite can level up your social media content creation in several ways.
First, the Hootsuite Composer allows you to create content for multiple social networks all in one location. You can even customize and tweak a single piece of content to publish effectively on different accounts.
Composer also includes an extensive royalty-free media library and powerful image editing tools, so you can start creating content without any in-house photography or design skills.
To use Canva in Hootsuite:
Log in to your Hootsuite account and head to
Select the type of visual you want to create. You can pick a network-optimized size from the drop-down list or start a new custom design.
When you make your selection, a login pop-up window will open. Sign in using your Canva credentials or follow the prompts to start a new Canva account. (In case you were wondering — yes, this feature does work with free Canva accounts!)
Design your image in the Canva editor.
Start your free 30-day trial. You can cancel anytime.
Once your content is ready to go, Hootsuite Publisher allows you to schedule posts to align with your content calendar. It even provides custom recommendations about the best time to post based on your own social analytics.
Hootsuite’s Content Library, collaborative drafts, social listening features, and content curation tools also ease the effort of social media content creation.
Try Hootsuite for free for 30 days
Ok, but what if you find yourself staring at Hootsuite Composer without ideas for engaging posts? We’ve got you covered. You can use one of the 70+ easily customizable social post templates to fill the gaps in your content calendar.
The template library is available to all Hootsuite users and features specific post ideas, from audience Q&As and product reviews, all the way to Y2K throwbacks, contests, and secret hack reveals.
Each template includes:
A sample post (complete with a royalty-free image and a suggested caption) that you can open in Composer to customize and schedule
A bit of context on when you should use the template and what social goals it can help you reach
A list of best practices for customizing the template to make it your own
To use the templates, sign in to your Hootsuite account and follow these steps:
Head to the Inspirations section in the menu on the left side of the screen.
Customize your caption and add relevant hashtags.
Add your own images. You can use the generic picture included in the template, but your audience might find a custom image more engaging.
Publish the post or schedule it for later.
Learn more about using social media post templates in Composer.
Did you know that Hootsuite comes with OwlyWriter AI, a built-in creative AI tool that saves social media pros hours of work?
You can use OwlyWriter to:
Write a new social media caption in a specific tone, based on a prompt
Write a post based on a link (e.g. a blog post or a product page)
Generate post ideas based on a keyword or topic (and then write posts expanding on the idea you like best)
Identify and repurpose your top-performing posts
Create relevant captions for upcoming holidays
To get started with OwlyWriter, sign in to your Hootsuite account and head to the Inspiration section of the dashboard. Then, pick the type of AI magic you want to see in action.
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OwlyWriter will generate a list of post ideas related to the topic:
And that’s it! OwlyWriter never runs out of ideas, so you can repeat this process until your social media calendar is full — and sit back to watch your engagement grow.
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Visme is a design tool used to build infographics, animations, videos, charts, social graphics, and other visual content to post on social media.
Visme’s extensive font library and custom color options make it easy to match your brand identity and create a series of cohesive images that embody your brand style.
This is a great social media content creation tool for anyone who podcasts or creates other audio content. You just upload or import audio, and Audiogram creates a social video with automatically generated captions and an animated waveform.
Source: Hootsuite app library
It’s a simple way to make visual posts from audio content.
RiteBoost helps with content creation for social media by auto-generating static images or GIFs from your post text. It also automates some of the more mundane aspects of content creation, like adding hashtags, emojis, and author attribution.
Pictographr is a drag-and-drop design tool with a built-in image library and impressive font collection. It’s useful for graphs and charts, memes, or simply adding visual appeal to any social content.
Source: Hootsuite app library
Grammarly is an AI-powered writing assistant that helps users write clear, mistake-free copy.
Did you know that you can use Grammarly right in your Hootsuite dashboard, even if you don’t have a Grammarly account?
With Grammarly’s real-time suggestions for correctness, clarity, and tone, you can write better social posts faster — and never worry about publishing a typo again. (We’ve all been there.)
To start using Grammarly in your Hootsuite dashboard:
Log in to your Hootsuite account.
Head to the Composer.
Try for free now
Learn more about using Grammarly in Hootsuite.
Social content needs to be crisp, clear, and easy to understand at a glance. The Hemingway App helps with all of the above by analyzing the readability of your content and providing recommendations to make your writing less complex and more concise.
Source: Hemingway App
Save time managing your social media presence with Hootsuite. From a single dashboard you can publish and schedule posts, find relevant conversions, engage the audience, measure results, and more. Try it free today.
Better content in half the time
Boost engagement and save time with a hashtag generator, post templates, Canva, and Grammarly Pro in Hootsuite.
Few people see it as such, but content curation is more of an art than a science. There is no set formula, and the better your brush strokes are, the more likely you are to succeed. This is one of the reasons why some people/brands have more engagement on their social media pages than others. They just seem to ‘get’ their audience, and their audience ‘gets’ them. The more planned your content curation efforts are, the more likely you will be to enjoy its benefits.Why Social Media Content Curation Matters
Curation helps you survive two social media perils — overcrowded social media feeds and the crime of sounding too self-obsessed. It also helps you build invaluable relationships while providing value to your audience.
Curated content can help you engage social media fans and newsletter subscribers by moving beyond your expertise and sharing with them insights and ideas from experts world over.
If you are convinced of the necessity of social media content curation, let us move forward to the things you need to consider when implementing it for your social media pages.1. You Need to Know Your Audience
Remember the two perils? Being self-obsessed is a huge no. Don’t simply curate ‘industry content that suits your brand.’ Also focus on exactly what your audience needs and wants at this instant. You will be surprised at how drastically that change in perception will affect your content choices.
Instead of resorting to lazy marketing (effortless content sharing), as Mark Schaefer calls it, you should make sure that your curated content also solves a real problem, and is interesting and timely.
The post in the image below is dated, and useless to your audience if you had shared it at the end of 2024, or now, in 2023. Avoid making such mistakes.
How do you know what your audience is interested in? Are you listening to them?
You are the best judge of the most relevant alert terms, so fine-tune them and make them more specific than the ones that I have suggested.2. Curation Isn’t a Substitute for Original Content
By no means should you flood your social media page with curated content. There has got to be a balance of both created and curated/shared/re-tweeted posts.
Even if I hadn’t shared this information with you, you would probably know that this is happening. All of us do it, which makes it hard for a reader to assess the credibility of information shared on social. This is why it is critical for brands to create original content with unique value that can solve real problems. People love brands that can help them overcome obstacles in areas that are important to them — like their career or their personal lives. Sharing content with real value is an important part of establishing authority on social media.
The same standards apply to curated content, which represents you on social media just as created content does. Even if the content you share isn’t yours, you can add value with your unique insight or a tip that the author may have forgotten to mention. Even if you have nothing to say, ensure that you add something in your voice, maybe recommending an article like Alison has done in the example below.
You could even add emojis that let you express your personality to let your audience know that it is you sharing that information.
You could use a social media manager app like DrumUp that lets you customize curated social shares with emojis or a news aggregation app like Newsify that lets you curate niche-specific news for your audience, to easily curate unique content.3. You Shouldn’t Lose Sight of Your Goals
It helps to have an intentional theme, one or two very clear messages that come across in everything that you curate (and create). Stay true to your central themes.
The brand Girls Who Code, for instance, clearly stands for gender equality and empowering women in the tech world. That message comes across very clean. They curate a lot of content synonymous with that message.4. You Need to Have a Systematic Process for Content Curation
You can’t manually sift through content in your niche, the research could take hours. Plus, doing it without a set process would be hard if you had to do it everyday, or on a regular basis. Keeping on top of current events would become a real task.
Create your process. Identify top blogs, influencers, and new agencies to follow. You could streamline the process further by monitoring RSS feeds of every site on your list on a curation software.
Read as much as possible of what you intend to post on your social pages because it will represent your brand. Get your content marketing team involved. Ensure that everything that goes out is screened for relevance, value to your audience, and how it aligns with your central theme.
Place curated content alongside your created content on a content calendar. That way, you can enjoy an overview of your curated/created content distribution ratio and track if you have focused on central theme enough.5. Curating Partner/Stakeholder Content Can Help You Increase Reach
As a business, you may have built strategic ties with people/companies in your industry. You can reinforce those ties by sharing content created by them. This works on the same principle as influencer marketing. You feature your partners and their content, and they, in turn, help you promote your content.
Co-marketing is an interesting way to expand your audience and reach more people. This works especially well when you partner with a company that has the same target audience as you do.
You begin by finding those companies and making contact. Alternatively, you can catch their attention by sharing their content before you begin conversing with them. Knowing what you can do for them may make them warmer towards your co-marketing proposal.To Sum It up in a Tips List
Don’t forget to add the element of ‘you’ to every post.
Credit your sources, it is the right thing to do and they’ll appreciate it.
Remember that curation applies to all content formats, visual content included.
Don’t resort to lazy marketing, make sure that every post adds value.
Stick to your central theme and message.
Leverage social media management tools to simplify the process.
Make sure to build relationships along the way, they are important.
That’s a wrap. Which of these do you struggle with the most? We could explore that a bit more on social media. Also, if you have some information that belongs on this post, feel free to share it.
In our industry, good content is invaluable. But good content is also hard work.
From planning to Quality Contro, content must be researched, nurtured, analyzed, and improved on an ongoing basis to make it as suitable as possible for your target audience. But if no one is finding your content, then regardless of the quality, it won’t have an impact on your business’s bottom line. This is where paid amplification comes into play.
Pushing targeted eyeballs to quality content is something our team has had success with, so below I have shared some of the things we’ve learned from our experience.Amplification steps
Once these have been agreed upon, you then need to decide which social channel or channels to leverage in order to reach and engage your desired target audience.
You may have heard horror stories recently about the eradication of brand reach on Facebook; but these issues are limited to organic reach, and actually play into the hands of those with paid budgets at their disposal.
In terms of setting goals, however, I would recommend this technique for goals like increasing reach or impressions as a gauge metric. Setting ‘eyeballs’ as a goal is more effective because no matter how good the content you can’t guarantee engagements.
So, let’s say you’ve decided that you want your content to get 50,000 impressions rather than a number of engagements. What happens when you reach your impressions (or reach) goal and your engagement rate is through the roof? If your content registers a strong engagement rate then push your amplification further because it’s clear that your audience and people who are seeing your content are reacting well to it.
But how do you get the best value for money? If you are trying to get people interested in your content you can target related keywords and pages. To keep costs down but your ad still targeted you should approach this like you would a Google Adwords campaign.
Try and avoid the most generic terms and pages that relate to your content.
For example, if your content is on motorsports then choose pages or interests that are related but aren’t necessarily obvious, like public figures James May, Richard Hammond, and Ayrton Senna, or movies like the Fast and Furious franchise.
If your content is more suited for remarketing or people who are your established demographic then a bit of Facebook mining can really open your eyes to which pages, brands or interests to target.
The equation shown allows you to establish what percentage of the people who like your page also like another brand or interest. When you have established this you can use related pages and interests to help optimise your amplification by using the same methods as previously explained.
Twitter Ads used to be an exclusive club, only available to those who could afford the minimum spend that bought you access to an account manager. It was out of reach for most businesses. Thankfully that has now changed with the launch of the self-service feature. Twitter is now available to the masses and your content can be amplified no matter what your budget.
To amplify your content on Twitter, you will need to launch a Promoted Tweets campaign. Here you will be able to select a tweet for amplification, much like Facebook’s Page Post Engagements feature, or you can create a new tweet featuring your content.
To ensure that you are reaching the right people you will need to be targeting the right people. These targeting metrics aren’t as specific as Facebook and are split into the following four areas:
Interests and followers
Firstly, I will walk you through keyword targeting. It’s as simple as it sounds; you input keywords and Twitter will aim your campaign at accounts that relate to that keyword either in their tweets or bio. So, for example, if you wanted to target Manchester United fans you might want to use the keywords Man Utd, Man U, #MUFC etc.
If you set up an interests and followers campaign you will be targeting exactly that. Twitter suggests interests through its categories feature but also allows you to be more specific.
Now, for me, this is where this targeting avenue falls down. You can input @usernames of people and influencers relevant to your content but it targets people similar to that user’s followers.
So you will be targeting people who are interested in your content but there is no guarantee that people similar will be as well.
To reduce the risk using this method, I would recommend conducting comprehensive research into how you choose influencers. I recommend tools such as Followerwonk to find this information.
Targeting by television is really useful if you have content relevant to a popular television show or event. Twitter has the TV guide’s information stored into its targeting so finding the relevant shows is simple. This method of targeting is for content that will have maximum impact during the show’s broadcast because this is when the conversation about the show will be at its loudest. For this reason the longevity of this method is not as strong as the others.
Tailored audiences campaigns are essentially remarketing to those who already have an affinity with, or showed interest in, your brand. This is because you will have to upload an email list to Twitter’s server and it will then target your content to the recognised emails’ Twitter accounts. This way of amplification will be more useful for content to encourage repeat purchases or to improve customer loyalty.
Once you have decided the right targeting method for your content you will need to set up the tweet to achieve maximum potential and cost efficiency. A recent study by Twitter found that tweets including an image were 35% more likely to be retweeted than those featuring other types of content, such as a video URL or a hashtag.
To optimise your Twitter amplification, I would suggest reviewing the success of your targeting when your ad has been running long enough to give you an indication of how it is doing. Whether you have chosen to target through keywords, interests, @usernames or television programmes, Twitter allows you to measure the success of each of those.
So, for example, if you have targeted followers of ten @usernames you can see which ones are giving you the best value, whether it’s cost per impression or engagement.
Once you have established which ones are most profitable, you can replace the less profitable @usernames with ones similar to these optimised ones and to reduce your overall spend on your amplification.
So if your ad had a low cost per impression or engagement with the Guardian then you should consider including The Telegraph or The Independent. If you repeat this method throughout the length of the amplification you can ensure you are keeping your ad fresh and optimised.
If your content is more appropriate for a professional audience then LinkedIn offers that exact alternative. These are called Sponsored Updates and you can target LinkedIn members through companies they are connected with, their industry or their job titles. Moreover, if your content is more suitable for senior professionals you can also target by seniority.
When setting up your Sponsored Update it is important to be resourceful on LinkedIn. You are targeting these people because they are professionals so offer them something that will benefit their careers or be useful for how they approach their professional life. Include compelling and relevant imagery.
What’s to come?Amplification Checklist
Now you have considered the above information, here’s a handy checklist to aid you during your social amplification:
Outline your objective
Set goals on how to achieve your objective
Recognise which channel or channels would best suit your niche
Decide which type of ad suits you
So now you should be aware of the options and capabilities of social amplification. You’ve worked hard on your content, hard enough for you to be proud of it. Showcase it in all its glory by creating a social amplification strategy so you can get all the rewards your effort deserves.
Thank you to Kyle Kirkland for sharing his thoughts and opinions in this blog post. Kyle is a social media consultant at
Thank you to Kyle Kirkland for sharing his thoughts and opinions in this blog post. Kyle is a social media consultant at Zazzle Media , a UK-based digital marketing agency with a reputation as one of the leading lights in the world of digital content creation and distribution. You can connect with Kyle on LinkedIn
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