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How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)
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How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar)

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I presented this at the 2013 Digital Engagement Summit in San Francisco. Learn how to to optimize and organize your social media content. To get the most out of this presentation, view it on …

I presented this at the 2013 Digital Engagement Summit in San Francisco. Learn how to to optimize and organize your social media content. To get the most out of this presentation, view it on slideshare.net and click on the Notes tab for each slide. The Notes tab is located below, next to the Comments tab.

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  • I was serious about the pickle jar.
  • You’ve probably heard this story before. A philosophy professor stands in front of his class, with a giant empty pickle jar on the desk.
  • He fills the jar with golf balls then asks the class if the jar is full. They say yes.
  • So he dumps a bunch of pebbles into the jar, and they fall into the spaces between the golf balls. He asks the class again if the jar is full and they say it is.
  • So he pours a bag of sand into the jar, filling it up, and covering the golf balls and the pebbles. He asks the class again if the jar is full. Again, they think it must be and say yes.
  • So the professor takes a pitcher of water and pours it into the jar, which is finally full.
  • He tells the class that the golf balls represent the big things in your life like your health, and your family, and your friends, and that even if everything else was gone, your life would be full with the just the golf balls, so work on filling your life up with the important things before you worry about the small things.
  • Now, I am going to take this lovely parable and ruin it for the sake of marketing.
  • The pickle jar is your social media content calendar.
  • Empty is bad, but there are varying degrees of full. We’re going to start with the big stuff and move on to smaller and smaller stuff, to fill out our social media content calendar.
  • You don’t need to plan out your entire year in advance. That’s crazy. But, do get out a calendar for the entire year and pencil in what you already know. For example, I used to be the Director of Social Media at Edmunds.com, a consumer automotive research web site. The auto industry operates on a cycle that doesn’t vary much from year-to-year. The auto show season kicks off in LA in November or December, but really gets going with the Detroit Auto Show in January, ending in the spring in New York. About that time, there is an increase in testing activity on new models and you start to see a lot of heavily camouflaged vehicles in spy shots. In the summer, there are tons of spy shots everywhere, and a couple early releases of new models, and a definite upswing in production photos. In the Fall, the new models are released. The next thing you know, it’s LA Auto Show time again.And that’s just the production cycle. There is also a sales cycle. Slow sales in the summer. They pick up in the fall and early winter, with another dip after the first of the year.You know basically what 2013 is going to look like for you company. Put that on a full-year calendar that you see every day. Color code it, use Post-Its, whatever you need so that you always know where you are and what’s coming next. Get to the point where these big cycles in your business are deeply ingrained in your consciousness.
  • And that’s still just the pickle jar.
  • We didn’t even get to the golf balls yet.
  • The golf balls are your website content. This is literally the big stuff – long form content like articles, blog posts, videos, white papers, and ebooks. But we’re not going to dump those balls into the jar as carelessly as the professor did. If we can, we’re going to organize the content around all that stuff we just wrote on the full-year calendar. These are the monthly themes, or quarterly business goals, or product releases, or traditional marketing and PR campaigns; things that are already known and scheduled. You can be flexible, of course, and move or add stuff later, but pencil it in now.Each big thing you already know about on your calendar is going to get at least a blog post. At Edmunds.com, the two weeks surrounding each auto show produced an insane amount of editorial content. Articles, spy shots, blog posts, videos of cars, interviews, etc. I didn’t know exactly when everything was coming out, but I knew roughly the timing and volume, so I knew that for those two weeks, any of the stuff that was going out to social media was only to support that content – the big stuff – there wasn’t room for anything else.Look for blanks on your calendar. If June is a slow month for you, think about what June means to your customer base. It’s the start of summer, warm weather, tans, swimming, kids out of school, vacations, outdoor activities. Or, slot in a more generic topic, one that you might occasionally touch on throughout the year, but also give it a month where it’s the focus. For instance, corporate culture. Plan some posts about your company’s mission, or employee benefits, or the awesome ping pong table you added to the game room. Do short video interviews with employees about why they like working there, or what a day at work looks like for them, or how that one employee is such a hard core cyclist that he bikes to work 22 miles each way every day.
  • You don’t have to put all your golf balls in the jar now – it’s going to be a long year – but doing any amount of planning up front is going to reduce the number of times this year where you have a panic attack because there hasn’t been a blog post for a week and a half and now you can’t think of anything to post except a meme you saw on Pinterest that will probably get you fired.
  • Do you ever add things you already finished to your To Do list just so you can check them off? Do the same thing for your content calendar. If you published an unplanned piece of content, add it to your big planning calendar, or put it on a separate calendar, but do record everything that has been published, so that you have a single visual record of all of your content.Before we move on from the golf balls, I want to talk for a minute about the format of your long form content, specifically your blog posts and videos.
  • First, blog posts don’t always have to be long. A picture and a paragraph make a great short blog post.
  • If your posts are longer, use short paragraphs. Use bold headings throughout. Use bullet points or pull quotes to break up the text. If users see long blocks of text, they’re going to skip the whole thing.
  • Post all of your videos on YouTube and on your own site. On your site page – even if it’s just a blog post about the video – include a written transcript of the video. (I believe you can also include this in your YouTube upload.) It’s great for SEO, but it’s also going to help you out later when you need to grab a quote from the video so you can promote it on social media.This screenshot is how most people post video on their blogs. They write a couple sentences for an intro, and embed the YouTube video. That’s totally fine, but I’d take it one step further. Below the video, include the transcript, or at least a much more detailed description with lots of actual quotes in it.
  • Ok, we’re done with the golf balls.
  • The next thing we’re going to put in our pickle jar content calendar is pebbles. The pebbles are things like Facebook posts, and tweets, and LinkedIn posts, and pins on Pinterest. And the pebbles are all original content, not just sharing someone else’s content.
  • Since you have your big pieces of content penciled in on your calendar, now you can layer in social media promotions of that content. Your blog post goes live on Monday morning, so you tweet it out immediately, and post about it on Facebook, and maybe create a related Event, or Photo Album. You schedule another tweet to go later in the day, and midday on Tuesday, and maybe again sometime on Thursday or Friday. You pin the blog post to one of your Pinterest boards. Since it’s your own content, you also use it in a status update on LinkedIn. That one blog post just created eight additional pieces of social media content. And in each instance you’re going to say something slightly different so that you never post the same thing twice.Let’s say it generates a lot of comments on the post itself and on social media. If the responders have a lot of questions, or if they lead the discussion in a new direction. Use that to generate a second blog post. Even if it doesn’t, it will certainly result in additional social media posts as you respond to their comments and questions.And those are just the pebbles related to one golf ball. You’re going to create original content for each platform as well: custom graphics, questions, polls, commentary. We’ll talk about that more in a bit.
  • Let’s take a quick look at each of the social media platforms I mentioned and talk about what your content there looks like.
  • On Facebook, I like to be pretty standard with the format of my posts for a few reasons.It makes my clients’ timelines looks betterIt creates visually appealing posts in their followers’ news feedsThey’re optimized for Facebook priority algorithm, helping them be visible to more of my clients’ followersAnd with the way Facebook throttles the visibility of page posts now, I recommend posting 2-8 times a day. Microsoft’s social media director says he doesn’t limit the number of posts to Facebook anymore.
  • This Facebook post has all the right parts: One or two sentences, a shortened link to your content, and a picture. Keep your description short, displaying no more than two lines of text if you can. This will help if you have an always-on ad campaign running on Facebook that promotes every new post you create. Which I recommend, by the way. Spending ten bucks a day on Facebook ads will help you increase your followers and engagement. Your ads are shown to people who don’t know about you, and your posts appear in the news feeds of more of your followers.Use a shortened link because it looks nicer, and it’s easier to track click-throughs. Never post a text-only status update, or post a link as a “link post.” Always do a photo post instead. Like I said, it looks better on your timeline, and it catches the attention of your followers in their news feeds. More importantly, photo and video posts have a higher priority than status updates and link posts, so you are increasing your chances of being seen in news feeds.
  • On Facebook, photo albums are a great way to add variety to your posts. Create evergreen albums that you can add to over time, like this album on the Bossy Interactive Facebook page. An evergreen album collects comments, likes, and shares over time. Every time you add a photo to this album, it creates a new post on your timeline – a post that comes with all those historical interactions, which give it priority in the news feeds.These graphics are from prior Facebook posts, which promoted blog posts. I won’t add a graphic to this album the same week I first use it in a Facebook post, because I want to spread it out a little more. I want to use this as another instance of promoting the same story. Activity on my page is low, so I would space them out a week. For a client with a much higher follower count and rate of engagement, I would space it out only a couple of days.
  • Of course not all of your posts are going to be sharing your own content. You’ll create posts that are just for Facebook.
  • I love Pinterest.
  • I’m going to give just a few tips here, then talk about some of the legal issues with using Pinterest.
  • I recommend a very high ratio of shared content to original content. Repin or share 10, 20, or 30 pieces of content from other people for every one piece of original content you pin from your own site. Do pin your own content, but don’t relegate it to a board that is only your own stuff. Always share your own pins on boards where you pin content from others as well. For instance, here is a piece of my own content on a board where I pin things about Pinterest. My other blog posts usually go on to my Digital Strategy board, or my Tech board, where I share lots of content from other people. This will keep your boards more interesting, which will help you get more followers, and more clicks on your pins.
  • Don’t blitz your users with a ton of pins at once, all to the same board. Or, even a ton of pins to different boards. Repinning content on Pinterest can be done in like a minute, so try to do it in shorter bursts throughout the day, with no more than a dozen pins in each session.This board is from Coach. On the day that they created this color swatch board, they created at least ten others, for different colors, and they pinned at least 30 pins to each one. I unfollowed every single color swatch board they created. I couldn’t see anything else in my feed!And, too bad for Coach, because this is not the first time I have used them as a bad example in a presentation.One thing they could have done is set up their color swatch boards as private boards, and filled them halfway with pins, then turned them public, and continued pinning to them in short bursts. That way, their campaign is ready to go, and they get traction faster without annoying their followers.
  • Speaking of bad examples, this one is unfortunately from my own site. On your blog posts, change the image alt text to what you’d want the Pinterest description to be. In this example, I had “Bossy says, Pin It!” as the image alt text, but I should have used the blog post title instead, which was, “Use Alt Text to Optimize Your Images for Pinterest.” When someone uses the Pin It button and chooses an image, the alt text is what auto-populates the description field.
  • This time last year most companies weren’t using Pinterest and a lot of those who were stopped their activity while they sorted out the legal impact of what they were doing. After consulting with one corporate attorney, and one patent attorney, these are the guidelines I use.Pin your own photos and custom graphics. It’s your stuff, you can do whatever you want with it.Repin other people’s photos as much as you want. When you repin something, you are creating a link to a photo that already exists on Pinterest’s servers because it was uploaded by a third party. Due to the nuance of copyright law, this is where the most gray area is. However, your company’s exposure to risk is very low.Selectively pin other people’s photos from the original source. This is where you will clearly violate someone’s copyright if you aren’t careful. Only pin images from sites with a “Pin It” button or from sites that have products for sale. No one is going to sue you for using their image to link to their product sales page. In either case, be sure to include the URL for the original source.
  • Just a reminder, we’re still talking about the pebbles here, but we’re picking up the pace. Regardless of the physics of the pickle jar, most of your social media content calendar is going to be filled with pebbles
  • Do you remember when you joined Twitter? I’ve had my account for six years. I totally didn’t get it at first.
  • Now, I tweet like a maniac.
  • For awhile, things have been changing on Twitter, for me personally and for the brands I represent. And I have been hearing this from others as well. Impressions and click-throughs are relatively steady, but engagement is down. Retweets and favorites are down a little, but not nearly as much as replies. It seems that unless it’s about customer service, followers aren’t as interested in talking to brands as they were before. At least not on Twitter. That kind of engagement is up on Facebook.
  • The format of a tweet is pretty easy. You don’t have a lot of room to work with.
  • This is a pretty standard tweet for sharing your own content. It has a description, a hashtag, and a shortened link. And, at barely a hundred characters, it leaves plenty of room for a followers to add a comment when they retweet it.
  • For tweets, I don’t like to add a picture when my tweet includes a link because it adds another URL to the tweet, which looks messy and is confusing for users. I like to give pictures and videos their own tweets. If it’s a custom graphic, include your URL on it.
  • And, of course you’ll post things on Twitter that you create just for Twitter.
  • We’re almost done with the pebbles.
  • The pebbles are they only things you post on LinkedIn. You aren’t creating original content there – the golf balls – but you are sharing your content, the pebbles. For LinkedIn, I format the status updates like tweets, but I don’t include hashtags. You can be more descriptive if you like because you don’t have the restrictive character limit. Maybe a add question to spur engagement.
  • So, you’re pickle jar content calendar is filling up. You’ve filled in the big cycles of your year. You’ve penciled in your blog posts and videos, and planned to promote them on social media. And you’ve created original content for your social media channels. Before we move on to the sand, let’s talk about what a typical day on your calendar might look like at this point.
  • Let’s say it’s the first Monday of May. There is kind of a lull in the business cycle, but it’s graduation season, so you have a post about that topic going live on Monday, and a video interview planned for the later in the week. Your post is scheduled to publish right after midnight on Monday morning. Monday, when you get into the office, or make yourself comfortable on your couch or at Starbucks, you create your Facebook post promoting the article and post it immediately. Then you work up four tweets promoting the article, each one different. You post the first one when you’re done, schedule the second one for later that day, the third one for midday on Tuesday, and the fourth one for Thursday afternoon. You copy the fourth tweet and use it as the Linked In status update for Monday. At noon, a scheduled tweet promoting last Thursday’s blog post goes out. After lunch, you fool around on Pinterest for awhile, remembering to pin the blog that went up that morning. Then you add a couple photos to the Top Gadgets for Grads photo album on Facebook. While you’re in there, you schedule a post contain a custom graphic to go out later in the evening. Then, when it’s almost quitting time, you suddenly remember that Google+ exists, and you throw up a link to a blog post that went up last week.
  • Let’s say it’s not you doing all the work, and that you are wrangling multiple content contributors within your company. The calendar is still basically the same. At Edmunds.com, I was the only person who was 100% allocated to social media. There were about a dozen content contributors who had social media assignments as part of their regular jobs. Most of them were editors. Since they were the ones producing the original content, it made sense for them to promote their own content. When an article was published, the editor promoted it immediately on Twitter, then scheduled the follow-ups themselves. They emailed the content for the Facebook post to the person managing the appropriate Facebook page. It made more sense for us to have only one person posting to Facebook to better manage the flow of content. All of the editors were empowered to create additional content for Facebook and Twitter, and to reply to followers, but that was optional for them. They were only on the hook for promoting their own content.
  • Now, you can layer in posts that share content from other sources. That’s what the sand is for.
  • On Facebook, when I want to share content from another source, I create a blog post on my own site about it first, then I link to my own page from Facebook. I used to share links to third parties before advertising became a requirement for company pages to be seen in news feeds. Now, if I am paying Facebook to promote my posts, I want every click to lead back to my own stuff.
  • On Twitter, I like to share content in two ways. I either put the attribution at the end, like in the first screenshot, or I retweet the whole thing with a little comment in the front, like in the second screenshot. I don’t like to use Twitter’s native retweet function, because then it doesn’t look like my tweet. And, when one of my users retweetsit, I don’t get that count. It goes to the original tweeter.On Google+ and LinkedIn, I only use the native share function. And on Pinterest, well, sharing is the whole point of the thing.
  • Now, that we’ve added the sand to the jar, let’s see what that Monday looks like. You’d scheduled a tweet with a quote from the CEO and some retweets from yesterday to go out this morning. Then, when you were logged into each application, throughout the day, you retweeted, and you commented, and you replied, and you liked, and +1’d. And you’ve ended the day with 30+ social media posts.Again, if you’re working with a team, the calendar is still basically the same. Perhaps you have one person who’s assigned to responding to users on Facebook, and another who’s assigned to responding to users on Twitter. And maybe you have someone running around capturing every golden word that falls from the CEO’s lips.That’s a pretty good day in social media. If you have more going on, then you will have more posts. If there was also an active marketing campaign running. You’d add a couple posts to support that. If you publish more than one piece of long form content a day, you’d have all the supporting social posts for that. If you sell products, or have a content running, you’d want to talk about those things, sparingly. I didn’t even talk about Instagram or Vine. You could layer those in as well.There are a lot of content options I didn’t talk about, but the point is to start with the big things and work your way down from there, and to plan and document what you can. When you’re stuck for what to post, it’s great to look back on your calendar and re-run something that did well the first time around.
  • Now it’s time for questions. But before you raise your hands, I have one for you.
  • What’s the water?
  • What’s the water?
  • Transcript

    • 1. How to Optimize Your Social Media Content (with a pickle jar) Michelle Magoffin Principal, Bossy Interactive Co-Founder/CEO, Sprawl3 michelle@bossyinteractive.com @BossyWeb LinkedIn.com/in/magoffin #BossyContent
    • 2. Life is like a pickle jar
    • 3. Your kid is a golf ball I mean that in a nice way
    • 4. sorry
    • 5. Life is like a pickle jarYour content calendar is like a pickle jar
    • 6. 1 year12 months52 weeks 365 days
    • 7. Sorry about that comment about your kid…
    • 8. DO NOT PANIC
    • 9. JeffBullas.com
    • 10. JeffBullas.com
    • 11. Feld.com
    • 12. I don’t even play golf
    • 13. Where am Igoing to get that many pebbles?
    • 14. What exactly should I post?
    • 15. Pin all the things!
    • 16. http://bossyinteractive.com/using-pinterest-legally-for-business/
    • 17. 140 characters
    • 18. LinkedIn, too
    • 19. • 12am – Blog Post • 9am – FB: Monday blog promo • 10am – Twitter: Monday blog promo #1 • 11am – LinkedIn: Monday blog promoMonday • • • 12pm – Twitter: Last Thursday’s blog promo 1pm – Pinterest: Monday blog promo 2pm – FB: photo album update • 3pm – Twitter: Monday blog promo #2 • 4:00pm: G+: Last Thursday’s blog promo • 6pm – FB: custom graphic
    • 20. http://bossyinteractive.com/i-know-how-much-time-you-spend-on-social-media/
    • 21. • 12am – Blog Post • 8am – Twitter: quote from CEO • 8:30am – Twitter: RT of article link • 8:45am – Twitter: RT of customer Q, with A • 9am – FB: Monday blog promo • 9:15am – FB: Replies to follower comments; Likes of comments • 10am – Twitter: Monday blog promo #1 • 10:15am – Twitter: Replies to followersMonday • 11am – LinkedIn: Monday blog promo • 11:15am – LI: Replies to follower comments • 12pm – Twitter: Last Thursday’s blog promo • 1pm – Pinterest: Monday blog promo • 1:30pm – Twitter: More RTs • 1:45pm – Twitter: More replies • 2pm – FB: photo album update • 3pm – Twitter: Monday blog promo #2 • 4:00pm – G+: Last Thursday’s blog promo • 4:15pm – G+: Shares of article links • 4:30pm – G+: +1 of follower posts and comments • 6pm – FB: custom graphic
    • 22. Questions?
    • 23. More resources available athttp://pinterest.com/peevedmichelle/content-optimization/ @BossyWeb #BossyContent

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