I only follow a select few brands on social media.
Why? Because other accounts are clearly managed by someone who does not know how to write readable social media copy.
I cross enough blatant advertising in my daily life––magazines, YouTube, billboards, television. I don’t also want to be pitched while scrolling through Twitter.
If it sounds hard, you’re right. But there is a formula for writing standout social media copy. It requires a little research. Lots of strategy. And most importantly, consistent effort.
I have successfully managed several accounts, both from an agency and brand side of things. Here is the five step plan I follow to write social media copy that’ll make you look twice.
- Develop audience personas
Before rolling your eyes, personas don’t mean what they used to. It’s not the cheesy “Karen, a 32-year-old mother of two who shops at Target…” Think more along the lines of your target user’s journey. What stage of the relationship funnel are you in––awareness, consideration, or decision? How are you targeting users in each stage? What role does social have to play in your larger marketing strategy?
These answers are necessary to crafting a compelling post. Contrary to popular belief, great social media copy only focuses on two or three audience segments. Write for them and the stats will come.
- Conduct a competitor audit
List five to ten similar influencers and analyze their engagement metrics, how they define their brand, how active they are on social, and which SEO keywords they rank for. Then you can simultaneously create your own voice, while understanding examples of what works and what does not.
Social media is a strategy. It’s not posting whatever clever insight pops into your head and hoping to go viral. By conducting a competitor audit, you will have the knowledge and awareness to start making noise in your industry.
- Establish a serendipity vehicle
The problem with most social media accounts is that they are transactional––I provide you a piece of content and you give me a form of engagement. But we’re in the business of building relationships. To do this, your social media strategy should focus on getting people to come back for more. Bring followers into your community by asking questions and publishing polls. Encourage engagement with user-generated content.
One of the top posts I wrote in 2020 simply asked our company's followers the type of content they’d like to see us post more frequently. It killed two birds with one stone––we know what topics interest people while making contributors feel like a part of our brand.
If you stick to showing off products and peacocking company announcements, followers will get bored and look elsewhere.
- Be relatable
High-performing social media posts often share a part of the human experience. Dove is a masterclass example. For years, Dove has shown real people on social media benefiting from its products. Take this Instagram post marketing Dove’s DermaSeries line for instance. It’s a real snapshot of a real person struggling with a skin condition. Anyone who has experienced something similar will feel an immediate emotional connection to the brand. The copy in this example just has to push the narrative along.
Relatability is how you build trust and ultimately convert a community of followers into buying customers.
- Remember your mission, vision, and brand pillars
Social media is an opportunity to push the boundaries of your brand––but don’t forget why you’re doing it all. Wendy’s can write some aggressively savage copy because it’s on brand, though if the American Marketing Association did the same thing, it would be weird.
Keep the why of your brand in mind at all times. It should inform the type of language, voice, and tone you strike.
Does this all sound overwhelming? Not to worry. PRMG can help you whip up copy that’s so piping hot, you’ll need oven mitts.