• Lou Devine

There's a reason for the auto-correct button

I was connecting with some good friends earlier via Whatsapp and got a bit frustrated at out how many 'normal' words my phone wanted to auto-correct. My first thought was 'darn these sausage fingers' but then I considered the correlation between this slowing down of our messages and the intention of our content.

Just a couple of years ago, social media experts were advising that we should put out a tweet nearly every hour of the day and post on Instagram every day and gain a gazillion news users each week. Fast forward to 2020 and my advice to you now is STOP POSTING. Okay, that's not true; of course post, but make all of your content meaningful..

Don't sweat it if you go a few days or even - gulp - a week without posting; your followers won't disappear. Instead, when always have a call to action (CTA) every time you post. That CTA doesn't always have to be strategic/to convert a sale (see below tips on this), it can sometimes be as simple as making your follower smile and connect with you. Just make sure there is a reason you are posting.

By posting meaningful content, you will encourage engagement and develop a reputation with your followers. And most importantly, you will continue to connect with your ideal follower.

Of course, as a business, you want social media to work for you in terms of sales but consider how you can incorporate valuable relationship-building into your 'sales content'.

Here are some ideas:

1. I have a little passion for make-up. It's also fair to say I don't know how long I can continue to credit my face wrinkles to 'years of laughter', so I do love a new purchase that can help eradicate them slightly. Caroline Barnes Make Up is someone who gives weekly tutorials and always includes affordable brands in the mix - due to her knowledge and tips, I've bought a number of items that she's recommended.

2. If you sell clothes, copy the high-street brands by filming real people wearing them. I'm a size 12 (on a good day/prior to lockdown!) with a waist I've never been in love with, so I need to see what a dress is really going to look like for someone my shape and size before I purchase. This works so much better in video than in a still. Queen Bee Collective owners regularly post photos and video of themselves wearing their products - both clothes and jewellery.

3. By giving your audience a 'behind the scenes' experience, they're getting to see a little bit more of you and your business. Showing your brand as human with real dreams, visions and aspirations and your motivations behind why you wake up everyday makes you so much more relatable. And consumers are becoming more and more mindful about what they purchase and who they purchase from so anything you can show them about provenance, ethical standards, charitable contributions etc. will help you connect. Local company CreateGiftLove have a lovely 'meet us' set of stories in their Highlights section on Instagram.

4. Finding out what consumers want to know about your business can give you so much rich content AND hopefully help you really get a niche handle on your business to make you stand out from your competitors.

Remember, getting the right content doesn't happen overnight - be prepared to test your content to see what your audience engages with. I've had my fair share of 'content flops' in the past, but I have used them to guide my future content. Be like the auto-correct on your phone; stop and reconsider the content you're going to put out there in the coming months!

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