Brainstorming social media content can be an incredibly tedious task for even the most creative and innovative writers, but it doesn’t have to be! Find the right brainstorming tactics for you and you will see more success from these initiatives.
Everyone pulls inspiration from different sources: personal life, work, a TV show, a book… Once you find your inspiration, it is a huge relief to finally come up with an idea to further explore. Coming up with ideas requires a lot of creativity because you are competing with other others who may or may not be doing the same thing.
How do you stand out? What makes you different? How do you gain attention from your audience? You want to create content that will keep your audience interested and coming back for more, which means that you need to be consistent and continuously pump out social media content that is extremely relevant to them, but isn’t repetitive and dull. So you brainstorm. This could be by yourself or with a team.
Here are a few tips to get you on the right path to coming up with content for your social media marketing:
SET GOALS FOR YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA CONTENT
The first step to a successful brainstorming session is to set goals. What is it that you want to accomplish during this session? Go over what you have so far – familiarize yourself with what you already have so you don’t find yourself repeating something. After you have reacquainted yourself with what has been done, look forward to what needs to be done. Never go into a brainstorming session not knowing what you want to get out of it; this is how you waste your time. If it helps, write down your goals somewhere you can visibly see them. As you accomplish each goal, check them off – this is encouraging because you clearly see yourself achieving your goals and getting closer to finishing the overall session.
It is easy to get carried away with vague goals – setting specific goals allows you to focus on the details that really matter. The more specific the goal is, the more specific your ideas will be. With broad ideas come broad topics that will ultimately lead to another brainstorming session. You want to set goals that are attainable and realistic so you have a clear vision on how they will eventually be achieved. Examples of specific goals could be: We want to rank number one for the keyword term “service marketing,” since we estimate it will generate 400 visitors to our website per month or we would like to generate 2 customers from our current client list using email marketing.
SET A DEADLINE
Most people tend to work well under pressure. Knowing they have a deadline or timestamp to meet cuts out distractions. Although a deadline will not make the brainstorming management process any easier, it does give you (and your team) room to focus. Deadlines help you prioritize your tasks, the things needs to get done sooner rather than later. As stated above, you have a goal to complete by the end of the designated time period. Deadlines set expectations on what should get done when.
How do you decide how long your deadline should be? You don’t want the time period to be too long to where you get burnt out, but just long enough to get a reasonable amount of work done, in other words: realistic. It is important to take the actual deadline of the project into account when coming up with a time limit – this creates a sense of purpose. Setting an imaginary deadline also holds you and your team accountable to get you goals done by a certain period of time – ideally set your goals to where you complete each one during a certain amount of time. This keeps your session as efficient as possible.
REVIEW YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA CONTENT STATS
Numbers don’t lie. In fact, your social media numbers will prove to be your best friend when it comes to brainstorming. They will show you exactly what has worked in your past social media interactions and what has not. This will give you an idea of what you may want to avoid moving forward. (By listing things NOT to do, you are half way there!) By also showing you what has worked will give you some perspective on what you could do that is similar to what you have done in the past. Tools such as Hootsuite allow you to monitor and manage your social media accounts and content. It also allows you to view your engagement, analytics, insights, and monitor campaigns. Having this information at the tips of your fingers is incredibly beneficial because you can measure the effectiveness of your content and how well it’s working.
GO BACK TO YOUR CUSTOMER JOURNEY MAPS
The whole point of a Customer Journey Map (CJM) is to get inside the head of your target customer and understand them as much as is humanly (or digitally) possible. Your CJM should have identified content that they either really need to have or want to have. Brainstorm using word associations and mind maps around these topic areas.
Competition for standing out on social media content is stiff these days. Everyone has some form of social media connected to their business, however some utilize their social media content more and/or better than others. The primary way people will most likely find your social media page or content is by a search engine. If you don’t have the right keywords you won’t rank as highly; the more generic your topic or keywords are will put you up against more competition.
Keywords help decide if your content will be discovered by people searching online. Although you may be tempted to look at what keywords your competition are using, don’t be fooled. Using the same keywords as your competition puts you in direct digital competition against them and maybe more websites that are using the same keywords. You want distinctive keywords that will set your content apart and give you less competition, ranking you higher in someone’s search. Do your research on what works with your business and will target your desired audience for the best results.
Target “long-tail keywords”. These are keywords or phrases that are longer and more specific than generic terms. For example, if you wanted to drive traffic to your website that sells customized shirts for recreational sports leagues, rather than trying to rank for “clothing” or “apparel”, you would want to use something like “customized shirts for adult soccer leagues”. While your search volume might be lower, the there will be less competition for these words and the traffic you get will be more relevant to your business. (Though longer keywords get tricky with Twitter’s character limit!)
GET OUT YOUR COMFORT ZONE
Nothing new is ever found in a place of familiarity. Sometimes the best ideas come from the craziest and more ridiculous ideas. Not necessarily saying you should be outlandish, however take inspiration from the daring ideas. If those daring ideas just so happen to be outlandish – you may have just won. Questions like “What If…” can prove to be the most inspirational. They allow you to explore potential which can ultimately lead you to your next big idea. Another way to get out of your comfort zone is to view multiple digital mediums. There are numerous formats you can chose from: webinars, blogs, YouTube, podcasts… etc. New social media content is exciting content and will most likely surprise your audience already in place, and could potentially attract a new audience that did not have access to your previous content. Look to adjacent industries or maybe even completely unrelated industries.
We understand brainstorming can be incredibly stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. In fact, once you get the ideas flowing, brainstorming can prove to be fun and exciting. By coming up with new social media content ideas you are pushing your brand in a direction towards potential success!
Questions? Feel free to email us at email@example.com, we’re here to help!
If you want more information on how to generate and share your content, check out our Marketing Interface Blog Post: How to Make Generating and Sharing Content Easier.