Effectively Using Pinned Posts

In Facebook and Twitter you have the functionality to pin a post to the top of your profile’s feed. Which means anyone visiting your profile, page or group will see that message first. It’s a useful tool for promoting key messages for your business. But it’s essential you avoid overusing the tool or misusing.

A pinned post is effective when

You use multi-media

Carefully write the post, be succinct. Check you have included key information with a smart-looking link (shrunk or a customised Bitly link). Use a powerful and relevant image that will draw people in. Video could be even more effective.

You pin temporarily

Leaving the same link at the top of your feed can look a bit stale and uninviting. How likely are users going to delve into the rest of your feed if you haven’t changed the pinned post in over a month? The timescale is relevant to the content you’re highlighting in the post but even if you haven’t finished the promotion, consider changing the text or image slightly after two weeks. That way you capture new visitors without frustrating repeat visitors.

It has a clear purpose

Ask yourself what you want people to do after reading the post? Balance the promotional tone with a sentiment which still connects followers to the subject matter. Some types of posts are likely to work better than others, such as:

  • Announcements – tell visitors about your latest business development or news. Perhaps you won an award? Or have created a video from an event?
  • Promotions – broadcast a money-off promotion or other incentive.
  • Events – drive ticket sales on the run up to an event. Make sure customers find the event info and ticket sales link in as few steps as possible.
  • New products or services – capture more users by pinning a showcase post with details of new product lines or services.

What a pinned post should not be

A bio

Your ‘bio’ or ‘about’ section should contain key information about you and your business; what you do, how you help people; how to contact you and a link to your website. People know how to find this, so repeating it all in a pinned post isn’t really helpful and could indicate you have nothing else ‘new’ to say. Your feed is a chance to dazzle people with your latest activity or photos, so don’t block the engagement with a pinned post which contains a bio.

Forgotten about!

If you’re using a pinned post for a temporary campaign or sales promotion be sure to remember to remove when that period has expired. It looks as if you lack focus and commitment on your social media activity and therefore unprofessional.

Want to learn more? Sign up to my 60-day Social Media Boot Camp for small business for £1 a day. Modules featured in this post include: Facebook community building, creating and using short links with Bitly, optimising images and video for social media, targeting quality content.

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Want to learn more about managing your content and effectively engaging customers? Subscribe to my training bulletin and get a FREE copy of 7 steps to social media success.

Social Networking Is A Two-Way Street

Many businesses contact me at BrightonMums.com through Facebook and Twitter to access our parent network of followers. Which is great, as it helps us keep up to date on local enterprise and offers for customers. But many of the messages come across confused and sometimes a little rude.

social network
The social network is surprisingly…social!

Social media presents a huge opportunity for smaller locally based business. It’s low cost in terms of investment, although requires a bit of time to prepare content and network with other users. But as small businesses are geographically closer to their customers, they can connect through shared experience of the local areas, creating content that is instantaneous and current.

I have worked with various companies, large and small, offering training and content strategy to harness the power of social media to support their business goals. I get most excited when working with small companies and niche offerings because of the huge potential.

Here are a few of the ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’ for local business to achieve social networking success:

1. Network on social media platforms as if you’re networking a room. You wouldn’t approach someone at a business networking event, tell them what special offers you have on at the moment, then walk off! Be polite, introduce yourself, be clear why your message may be of interest to that person and their followers.

2. Know your audience. Before you tag someone, make sure you read that persons profile, blog or any other public content they produce and share. Understand their interests and motivations. Check your analytics at least monthly to see who is reading, clicking and commenting and when.

3. Read, favourite and share or retweet content from others. Comment on their posts in a professional, relevant way but show that your business has a personality and takes interest in their potential customers.

4. Don’t spam. Repeatedly tagging on Twitter or posting on a Facebook page wall without interacting or at least reciprocating a share or retweet is spam. Cultivate a common connection through shared experience relative to your business or organisation. You are most likely to imprint your business in their memory, given the thousands of messages we read on social media each week.

5. Acknowledge your followers. Thank and welcome them to your feed privately or publicly. Respond to any messages within 24 hours where possible and if appropriate.

6. Focus on your content. Make it relevant, engaging with vital marketing information but also posts that will enhance readers’ lives. Think of the busy parent, looking for life hack ideas or activities for families and what your business can offer. Remember that images and video are often shared much more than plain text with web links.

We LOVE our organically grown social media network, built through hours of targeted engagement by our own hand (not promoted posts!). We have a relative high level of engagement, meaning we’ve attracted quality followers who connect with our message.