photo credit: kennymatic via photopin cc

In part one of this series we looked at key questions you need to answer to find the right Facebook strategy for your page. This week we will discuss the types of content you should create and share in order to capture the attention of your audience.

By now you should have defined your customers pain points and what your page is about. This should inform the kind of content you share.

Setting themes

Creating themes for specific months or weeks can help you focus on your content.

The Science Gallery in Dublin are currently running a “Fail Better” exhibition. Most of the content they share on their Facebook page relates to failure.

They include quirky observations, links and images.

A Quick Guide To Creating A Facebook Strategy - Part 2: Content

A Quick Guide To Creating A Facebook Strategy - Part 2: Content

A Quick Guide To Creating A Facebook Strategy - Part 2: Content

A Quick Guide To Creating A Facebook Strategy - Part 2: Content

The content appeals to my geeky side, I like the little snippets of quirky information and most of all it’s entertaining.

It is also 100% on message reminding me on a daily basis about their exhibition.

I highly recommend that you use a content calendar in order to plan your themes. Here’s the template I use.

Types of content to share

Images

Good images still attract the best interaction rate on Facebook. When you create images you need to consider if they are shareable or interesting. Here’s some ideas:

Quotes on images

Quotes are hugely popular on social media and if you make them visually attractive they are more likely to get shared. Search for quotations that are relevant to your theme or your industry. If possible find a royalty free image of the person you are quoting using Photo Pin. You can use and use PicMonkey to add the quote to your image.

Tips for using quotes

  • Only use the very best quotes, the ones that make you smile or the ones that you find inspiring.
  • Be original with your quotes. Try to avoid using ones that have been shared many times before.

Where to get quotes

Three of my favourite sources for quotes are

  • Goodreads - You will find some interesting quote here taken from literature. It’s my favourite source.
  • Brainy Quotes allows you to turn any of their quotes into images directly on their site. The downside is that you can’t copy and paste the text if you want to create your own images.
  • Pinterest – This might sound like an unusual choice but you will find quotes on all sorts of topics here using Pinterest search.

Topical content

What’s happening locally? What topics are being talked about on the news? Can you find images that tap in to this?

The local health food store in Athy shares photos of the town and they are always popular particularly when they contain humour.

Here’s an example from when the Pope was being elected last year:

A Quick Guide To Creating A Facebook Strategy - Part 2: Content

In Dublin a rogue car driver crashed through the historic gates of Trinity College recently. Car spares company ‘Mick’s Garage’ used it as an opportunity to capture attention and to tell their audience about products they sell.

A Quick Guide To Creating A Facebook Strategy - Part 2: Content

Behind the scenes images

Customers love to see what goes on behind the scenes in your business. This image from Dublin Vegetarian restaurant Cornucopia shows the staff preparing today’s meals.

A Quick Guide To Creating A Facebook Strategy - Part 2: Content

Customer images

Dublin Zoo encourages customers to share images on their page. They then uses these on their page awarding a ‘Fan photo of the week’.

A Quick Guide To Creating A Facebook Strategy - Part 2: Content

They also use them for caption contests, fun facts an more:

A Quick Guide To Creating A Facebook Strategy - Part 2: Content

Nostalgia

Nostalgia is a big trend at the moment. if you have any historic photos of your business you should share them with a caption. If you don’t search PhotoPin for vintage images related to your industry.

Status Updates

Plain text status updates still seem to have a large reach on Facebook particularly if you use them to spark conversation. Here’s some ideas on how to use them.

Questions

Asking questions will help you engage your audience and status updates are the perfect way to do this.

The benefits of asking questions are:

  • More comments mean that more people will see your posts in the future
  • Those who interact with your posts are more likely to remember you in the future
  • Find out more about your audience.

I have found that the best format for asking a question is:

Good headline

The problem you want the answer to. Your own experience. Ask for an answer

1. option one
2. option two
3. option four
4. Something else

Including your own experience helps people picture their own answer. Numbering possible answers makes it easier for people to answer from a phone. It’s a lot easier to type 1, 2, 3 or 4 than to write a long winded answer.

Fun Facts

When we hear quirky, unusual or surprising trivia we tend to store them up and enjoy sharing them with our friends. Social media gives us the opportunity to do this immediately.

Use Google to find some trivia related to your business and share it with your audience.

Tips

Just like trivia, people love to share tips. They also give you a chance to share your expertise. Try to create tips that are unique to you or that you can put your own spin on. The simpler and more useful your tips are the more people will remember them and share with others.

If you become known as a source of good tips people will keep coming back for more. You will build a loyal audience.

News

Status updates are the perfect way to share news. Perhaps you are fully booked tonight or your email is down. A short status update is a great way to inform your customers.

Video

Video updates are the most successful type of update on my Facebook page. Facebook seems to show them to a larger portion of my audience and they are viewed, liked and commented on more than any other type of content I post.

Tips

Video is the best way to share tips on Facebook. They are easier to digest and share than text updates.

Showing not telling

Video gives you the opportunity to show off your product. The series of ‘Will it Blend‘ YouTube videos from BlendTec shows exactly how powerful their blender is.

If a blender can blend an iPhone it will certainly blend all the lumps out of my smoothie. It’s a fantastic way to ensure people remember their brand.

Is there a series of videos you can make that show off exactly what your product of service does in a memorable way?

When you create a video upload it directly to Facebook as well as YouTube. Facebook seem to prioritise videos that they host over YouTube ones.

Links

Make a list of words that relate to your theme and use Google alerts to find results related to them.

Use Google, Pinterest, Slideshare, Twitter and Google+ search to find content relating to your monthly themes. Hone these down to the best possible content for sharing on your Facebook page.

Post links back to your own site, blog and product pages.

Remember to always tell people why you are sharing a link and what you find particularly interesting about it. If you are linking to your website make sure you direct people to a specific page not just the home page. If possible have a lead capture form on the page like an email sign up on the page you are sending them to.

Posting schedule

Now you have your content you need to put together a posting schedule so that you know exactly what you should be posting every day.

You can download a blank posting schedule here.

Try and mix up the different types of updates; photos, status, video and links to maximise your weekly reach.

What time to post?

There is no one correct answer to this question. Try to avoid peak times. 8 – 9am is one of the heaviest traffic times on Facebook so your content will be competing against a huge amount of others at this time. Try posting slightly off peek for the best results. 7am and 10pm work well for me but results will vary depending on your audience.

Also think about the content that will work best for your audience at different times of the day. Commuters on urban transport don’t have time to read long articles on their phones, good images will work better for this audience. Train commuters will want to catch up with news when they are on the move so links will work better with these people than images.

Go back to the audience analysis you put together in part one of this series. Try to work out what content will work at what time of day for your targeted audience.

These are just a few content ideas to get you started. Build on this over time and you will find your Facebook page becomes more successful.

Next week in part three of this series I’ll be showing you how you can measure the success of your Facebook page.

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