By Eniko DeLisle, Social Media Director, Sales-Link, Inc.
By now, I think most everyone is aware of the importance of using social media to promote business, and hopefully, your corporation has an active presence on the platforms that best reach your target audience. But are your posts engaging? Do they pop? In this fast-paced, scroll-through world, using eye-catching visuals in social media posts is super important. Social media posts that are accompanied by an image are a whooping ten times more likely to result in an engagement with the viewer!
We can all agree that images are super important in social media posts, but how does one find the perfect image that gets noticed, and also ties in with the intended message? (I use several online sources for my images. Some are free, like pexels.com and others like shutterstock.com will charge you.) The important thing is to find eye-catching, relevant & perhaps even whimsical images that will enhance your postings.
Of course, it’s not enough to catch a person's eye with creative visuals, posts also need content that keeps the viewer engaged, and wanting more. In other words, it’s important to say something of value that stands alone, but also acts as a "tease" for desiring more information on the same topic. The idea is to entice the viewer into following a link to the company’s website, where further engagement is possible.
The Twitter post below is an excellent example of a truly catchy & informative post. The image is striking, and the message: "Your CRM should feed you rather than you feeding it!" gives good stand-alone advice to the viewer. But the post also adds a "tease": "INTERESTED IN HEARING MORE?" as well as an invitation to click on the link to the website to learn more. Voila! The perfect Social Media post!
In this post, the message was "No bots. Just 20+ years of expertise." I was delighted to find this cute little 'bot' that added a touch of whimsy...enough reason for the viewer to pause for an extra few seconds to read the post out of curiosity, if nothing else.
Here's another example where I was thrilled to find the perfect image. The message is simple and direct: "We get on the phone. We follow up. We fight for you." I wanted the image to show that Sales-Link is willing to fight for your company's success. I was overjoyed when I found this photo of a boxer who has just won the fight. In this case, the image actually added another level to the message...it implies subtly that we not only fight for you, but we will fight to win! Perfect!
The following post was an interesting challenge. I had to find an image that represented the twofold goal that is mentioned in the post: "first to transform your company's media & sales materials, then to win you more contracts." You can imagine how thrilled I was when I came across this image of two hands shaking, as if sealing a contract, in front of a 'win/win' sign...implying that we accomplished the two-fold goal!
Another one of my challenges is to find photos to accompany blog posts. (Of course, these images will also be used to promote the blogs on social media.) Comments from a client made me realize how differently some companies choose to use social media, so I wrote a blog about it: WHAT IS YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA END GOAL? This image of two kids playing by a soccer goal post is unique enough to be noticeable, and ties in whimsically with the title of the article.
Another good example is the photo I used for Sales-Link Inc. CEO Susan Walsh’s piece about the importance of identifying and clarifying your company philosophy: WHAT'S YOUR COMPANY PHILOSOPHY? For that, I found this wonderful photo of the busts of prominent philosophers that fit the bill perfectly!
On that note, clarifying your company philosophy will help you to design social media posts that deliver the message you want to get out to the public about your business. In summary, my best advice for creating effective social media posts, is to identify your intent, produce content that has value, as well as a tease and a call to action, then add an attention-grabbing image that has some relevance to your message, or a whimsical play-on-words. Now go make ‘em POP!