Offering strong social media content to help market your business is not just about quantity (posting consistently) or quality (posting relevant content to your various platforms), though both are important. The best social media content marketing strategy is one focused on balance of these two – offering a blend of original content, shared material and, of course, the occasional self-promotion.
Andrew Davis, marketing expert and author of Brandscaping: Unleashing the Power of Partnerships, summarizes this balance as Social 4–1–1: That is, a ratio of four pieces of relevant information for your audience, for every one piece of promotional messaging and one shared item. “For embroiderers, that may mean finding companies creating or using interesting promotional apparel, and then sharing these examples,” Davis says. “After you’ve earned the right to showcase yourself as a resource on this subject to your followers, you can send out something promotional – that’s the currency you work toward.”
Scott Mickelson, marketing director of Milton, WA-based Northwest Embroidery, has found this to be true of his company’s social media marketing efforts. “Some companies post for the sake of posting, but we don’t inundate people with promotional stuff,” he says. Though still fairly new to Twitter (with almost 600 followers, despite less than 100 tweets), Northwest has a strong Facebook presence, with nearly 2,000 likes.
For purely promotional posts, the Northwest’s followers tend to respond to specials or limited-time offers. Mickelson, however, prefers posts that could have more general value to those interested in decorated apparel. For example, he likes before-and-after photos where he can show off a rough design suggested by a client, alongside a final project completed by his firm.
Posts related to current events are also good for driving traffic. During the Super Bowl, the company helped cheer local favorite Seattle Seahawks with a newly designed “Bronco Buster” shirt. It showed the rival team’s mascot with a circle and slash through it. So many “people were buying the shirt that some customers took pictures of themselves wearing them in Times Square or Disneyland and we posted those to our social media pages,” Mickelson says.
The final piece in Davis’ 4–1–1 is re-sharing. “If you’re on Twitter, retweet someone’s post you think others will find helpful,” Davis says. “If you do this religiously, you’ll end up with a daily content routine that doesn’t take up a lot of time.”