30 Ideas for Providing Fresh Content in #SocialMedia

Providing content for social media can be a challenge.
Providing content for social media can be a challenge.

A while back, I discussed how I thought providing fresh content is the biggest challenge in social media. The post was geared more towards special practices such as a dentist or optometrist and how easy it can be to have ‘writer’s block’ in keeping up a Facebook page or Twitter account. After hearing responses from my readers both in person and on Twitter, I thought it might be of interest to revisit that post and provide a list of ideas for providing fresh content.

Listed below are 30 ideas I have brainstormed from my own thoughts and from other blog posts I have since come across. My goal in compiling this list was to take a marketing angle and focus on content that will improve interaction, build community and increase sales or foot traffic for a small business. When reading these tips, keep in mind that you should have a sense of humor and always respond to comments from your customers. Also, it is best to provide links and images whenever possible.

  1. Post trends or news in your industry
  2. Have guest posts from other professionals in your area or from other staff members or customers
  3. Video response to frequently asked questions
  4. Announcement of open appointments (use sparingly…)
  5. Trivia questions (I ask a #TriviaThursday question each week on KVSC 88.1FM’s Facebook and Twitter accounts)
  6. Name the movie quote (movie, actor, character) or song lyric (name and artist); when a user gets 25 right, they get a gift certificate for $25 (courtesy Iris Vision Care)
  7.  Special offers/discounts to customers or patients who follow you on Facebook or Twitter
  8. Hold a social media contest (this will help you increase the number of followers and keep people coming back)
  9. Video response to customer feedback (positive or negative)
  10. Post customer stories or testimonials
  11. Post video testimonials (YouTube integration)
  12. Stories from your staff (work/life experience–keep them positive and don’t get too personal)
  13. Highlight any community involvement or announce upcoming community events
  14. Highlight news from non-profits your business supports
  15. Add pictures from around the office, supplements to testimonials, products, staff, community events, anything that’s photo-worthy–people love pictures!
  16. Create polls: Why have you changed services in the past? Think of open-ended or simple yes/no questions. Use the new Facebook Questions feature (via Emily Bratkovich)
  17. Post upcoming specials
  18. Comment on positive news in the community
  19. Post new online listings of your business (Yelp, YellowPages, Yahoo! Listings, CitySearch, etc.) and ask users to comment or rate your business
  20. Post your other social media listings (don’t forget Foursquare!)
  21. Ask for shout outs and how you can find them on other social media channels
  22. Mention the businesses of some of your patients (don’t mention names)
  23. For optometrists: Ask patients to post photos of them in their very first pair of glasses (courtesy Iris Vision Care)
  24. Facebook 50: Iris Vision Care also posts a picture of a random frame each week–the first person to come in gets the frame at 50% off
  25. Quotes related to your industry (quotes with “vision” or “eye(s)” for an optometrist; quotes with “smile” in them for a dentist
  26. Post a how-to video or blog (Facebook note)
  27. Feature a customer or client of the week–tell your fans how great they are and maybe give them offer a discount
  28. Mention any TV shows, news articles or blogs in your industry
  29. Post a list of Do’s and Don’ts related to your business/product
  30. Ask questions about anything you can think of–easiest way to get a response
It is best to post something on Facebook at least once or twice per day–Fifty percent of Facebook “likes” occur within one hour and 20 minutes of being posted. Posting in the early morning or right before lunch is usually best. If you have any fun ideas for providing content that keeps the conversation going, builds your following or drives traffic to your business, let me know! Please comment below or send me an @mention on Twitter: @eric_wheeler. And remember, sharing is social!

Sources and additional resources:

Image from http://www.someforbusiness.com/

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11 thoughts on “30 Ideas for Providing Fresh Content in #SocialMedia

  1. Thx Eric – some great stuff here. I especially like no. 3 – a video seems like a great way to be interactive.

    Also the Facebook tip and link are awesome info too. Appreciate the post.

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  2. Great blog! I work in the beauty industry for a hair care company (my blog is part-time hobby) and I run their facebook/twitter pages. Creating a social media calendar is definitely a great way of planning ahead and creating great content. However, do you feel that its OK to post updates that are non-related to the industry you are in- but your fans can still relate to? Not sure if that makes sense but I wanted to show our fans that we can relate to other aspects of their lives too- not just beauty- make that extra connection so to speak. Thanks 🙂

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    1. Thank you for reading, Gabriela! I certainly think posting updates not necessarily related to your industry is a good idea and can help your brand appear more human. If you check out my example of a social media content calendar, you will see I have a few ideas for Facebook updates that have nothing to do with the radio station the calendar was made for. One example is “What’s your favorite scary movie?” This is a line from the first Scream movie that could be used with almost any Facebook page (especially around Halloween time). You can view that post here: http://wp.me/p1eous-7y

      You should also note that the calendar is a living document and I made many changes along the way. I also tried to keep track of those types of updates so I could learn what works and what doesn’t. I would simply write down the question, when I posted it and how many likes/comments it received.

      Thanks again,

      Eric D Wheeler

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      1. Hi Eric,

        Thanks for your quick response. My name is actually Jo, Gabriela is my co-blogger.
        Thank you for the tips and examples. I will definitley check out your other post. I mentioned the social media calendar idea to my boss today and she said to go for it. So that is my project for the week. I will definitley track the feedback I recieve for each post as well. I will also go ahead with my thoughts on creating content that is un-related to our industry. This gives me so much more to work with and I think its important for our fans
        to know that we are “humans” too.
        Currently I’m running a Photo Contest for the company I work for- so far so good! These giveaways and contests seem to be the hardest to develop and track especially with all the fb regulations but we just started using Shortstack (third party app) recently so that should help run things smoothy.

        Thanks again for your feedback 🙂 Looking forward to reading your posts.

        Jo

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      2. So there’s two girls unlike any other? Just kidding. Let me know how your calendar turns out and the contests. I’ve used ShortStack before. It’s a great app that makes things really simple.

        Like

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