This is the second in our 5 part series on leveraging sharing for your business. If you haven’t already, read part 1 prior to continuing. Check back next week for part 3 in the series.

Part 2: Creating & Curating for Your Brand

Creation vs Curation

Not everything you post is going to be original or self-promotional. Social media is a conversation, and every good conversationalist knows better than to brag about themselves excessively. While most original content will be promotional, it doesn’t necessarily need to be. In addition to sharing promotional content also make an effort to create conversations around interesting topics, events, or experiences that you determine as relevant to your business. For instance, if you’re a local ski shop, creating a conversation around a big storm moving through would be an example of providing original content that’s topical and relevant, but not self-promoting. Furthermore, creating engaging original content and conversations takes time and resources. Leveraging existing sources and media will help your social media presence stay fresh and relevant while allowing you to build relationships with like-minded businesses and individuals who can help spread your message. For every 1 self-promoting post, you should share 4 non self-promoting items or found content from others.

5 Cornerstones of good content.

1. Design content to be passed on, not just consumed.

You must understand that your audience is not your immediate friend group; instead your audience are the friends of your friends. When media goes viral, it does so because it attracts people on a number of levels and has mass appeal. You shouldn’t share something unless you perceive it as being interesting to not only your friends, but also the friends of their friends.

2. Good content is good conversation.

  • Does it come from a respected or valued source?
  • Is it unique?
  • Does it express an opinion or offer a point-of-view?
  • Is it provocative. Does it make you laugh, cry, angry, intriqued, or sentimental?
  • Is it topical?

3. Positive content is more viral than negative.

Keep your posts funny, uplifting, and full of good news. Avoid going negative and keep things civil. As a general rule, discussing politics or religion is poor taste.

4. Write headlines that are meant to be shared.

A dynamic headline can make the difference between someone seeing or not seeing your post. Create headlines that demand attention and drive curiosity, not simply stuffed with keywords. More on writing good headlines to follow.

5. Mom approved / PG-13.

Don’t create content that’s too risqué or overtly offensive. If it’s not something you’d share with your mom then chances are most people won’t be willing to pass it on. With that said, the biggest group of sharers online are typically middle-aged women.

Check back next week for the third part in the series where we’ll discuss how to package your content for distribution.