Today on Instagram I opened up my stories to the public giving my followers the opportunity to ask any questions they had in regards to content and social media marketing & replying so everyone could see. If you haven’t seen the "ask me something" feature on Instagram head over to nic_fren and check it out.
So far, and I expect there to be more questions to come, we’ve received:
· How did I get started with my content and how do I decide when & what to post?
· Where do I get my inspiration from?
· What content do I find works best?
· I know video is where I should be but I don’t want to be on camera – what do I do?
· Do I really need to be paying for ads on Facebook & Instagram?
Some great questions and these come up all the time so I wanted to address them and answer them here the way I answered on Instagram stories.
How did I get started with my content and how do I decide when & what to post?
My audience is forever changing and with that so too does our content. I listen to what my audience wants and develop content around that.
Having been a sales agent certainly helps to produce content that I know is relevant having been in the industry.
I often start out the week or month with a clear vision of what I want to publish online but then at the last minute I change my mind. There’s certainly nothing wrong with that as I have what I call “A Content Bank”. A heap of articles I’ve written, images created or videos done that if I get stuck they are my go-to. Some content you see today could in fact be a year old.
Why would I decide to pull an idea last minute? It might have seemed like a good piece of content or information at the time but I’m just not feeling it on that particular day.
I do think the one thing I’m good at though is being able to identify a couple of key points that are relevant in the market I work in and start building frameworks around that.
Articles are great. From this one for example there is probably around 10 images I could create to market this in 10 different ways.
I could also break up the 5 questions asked and do a short 59 second video to post to Instagram. Once you get into the habit of doing this you will find your problem isn’t that you don’t have content it’s that you have too much and you have to cut it back.
Where do I get my inspiration from?
I follow a really diverse range of people online and work with some amazing people.
I see content online that I really love and take the bits and pieces that I like and make it my own. I see content that’s really not my thing and think how would I have done that to make it look better visually.
I have clients for whom social media really isn’t their thing. They will come to me and say ok I want to put this idea up on social media and you look at them like a deer in headlights thinking “how do you actually expect me to do anything with that”? That’s part of the fun.
You might see the finished product on my page but know that there’s probably been about 3-4 attempts to get what I want. I’m getting better, it used to be around 10 designs before I was vaguely happy with it.
I like to be different online and stand out. I always looked at what competitors were doing when I was selling and did it differently. There were one or two trends that I believe former colleagues and I started a few years back. We might have kicked started them but I see agents now doing them so much better than we did. I think that’s healthy. Taking what you like and making it your own thing. What I don’t like is when our content is flat out stolen. Not because it’s an ownership thing or anything like that but it just lacks creativity.
What content do I find works best?
For me personally and I can only speak for myself, I find it’s when I put the phone up and start filming when walking down the street and talking to my audience.
Content that connects or engages us or it’s something for them. Whether that be some information we have posted, a new service or platform we have been working on for them.
Recently we released an online ordering system for our clients to book social media ads. Agents were telling us, we know we need to do ads, it’s just too difficult or time consuming. So, we took the difficulty and time away and created a system where in the time it takes to order a cup of coffee they can order a social media ad campaign. It was created for our audience, for their convenience and so far, has been well received.
I know video is where I should be but I don’t want to be on camera – what do I do?
Believe it or not I didn’t either. Might be hard for those who have followed me for a while to believe but initially I didn’t even want a Facebook page. I felt awkward on camera, didn’t think I looked good, waved my hands around way too much and people told me I sound like a bogan – and you want me to step in front of a camera?
What I realised is I can still film myself and delete it if I really didn’t like it & re-record. Over time I got better at it to the point I really don’t care if I sound like a bogan these days or wave my hands around too much.
For others though it’s a no way it’s happening thing and I completely respect that so here’s a few alternatives.
1) You don’t have to be in the video. Yes, video is the best performing content on socials but that doesn’t mean you HAVE to be in it. Check out some of our property videos or market wraps on our pages for ideas. Simple slide shows with information and images is all you need.
2) Take your slideshow and do a voiceover if you like. iPhones have the app iMovie which has a great voice over tool you can use.
3) Get someone else to do it for you. A team member, a client or hire a professional.
4) Try it. Go home record and delete a few videos and get used to it. I’ve found time and time again that once people start and get used to it and realise the world isn’t going to laugh at them they ease into it and I’ve seen a few naturals emerge as a result.
Do I really need to be paying for ads on Facebook & Instagram?
Not at all. If you are happy with the way your business is going at the moment without it then no you don’t.
However, social media is not going anywhere and it’s getting stronger. Those with the strongest online profiles will win the game I promise you. At the moment it’s relatively an even playing field but it is going to change.
If you think it’s expensive to market on these platforms now when you don’t have to can you just imagine how expensive it’s going to be when you DO have to. Whether you sell real estate, cars or clothes the costs of the top portals to promote on are going up and up and up each year as do the social portals. The difference is corporations are not seeing the value in socials - yet. When they do, it's google ad words all over again.
The world Is changing, the way we live is changing and what we did yesterday is not going to work tomorrow.