We all sometimes feel overwhelmed by the ever-changing world of social media. You're not alone! Even the savviest marketers can feel like they're drowning in the sea of different platforms and constantly evolving trends.
In this episode, marketing experts Simon Harvey and Daniel Kleber will give you some tried and proven approaches to help you use social media to stay connected with your customers and build your brand. And the secret weapon? Story. We will show you how to use the power of story to build your social audience. We'll guide you through the process of creating a clear and compelling brand script that will take your social media presence to the next level.
With our tips and strategies, you'll learn how to create content that resonates with your audience and builds a loyal following.
To help you improve your marketing strategy, download the free brand script worksheet, which includes sections for each part of the storytelling framework we discuss in our episodes, here (or copy and paste the link below):
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You know how tiring it is to run a social media presence for your business. So many different platforms, constantly changing trends and different ways of posting within each. Social media can be overwhelming, even for the most savvy of marketers. But when it's done right, you've seen how social media is a great way to stay connected with your customers. and build your brand. That's why it's worth following a tried and proven approach. In this series, we've been looking at story and how to use it to build clarity and success within your sales and marketing. And in today's episode, we're going to use the power of story to build your social audience. We talk about how your brand script will lift your social media to the next level, how to create a clear message that resonates with your audience, and how to build a set of followers that want to engage with you. Hi there everyone and welcome to the Authentic Marketing Podcast in association with Demodia. I'm your host Simon Harvey. And I'm joined by my co host Daniel Kleber. Hi there, Daniel.Daniel:
Hi, Simon. Good morning, everyone.Simon:
So, Daniel, you're from a generation that's somewhat younger than me. So I'm gonna start off with a question that I know is close to your heart. Here goes. How many times a day do you check your social media?Daniel:
Ah, oh no. Now you've got me. No, I really don't know. Too many, that'sSimon:
for sure. That's very definitely the case. I've often sat there watching with you, playing with your phone at your desk when you're supposed to be working. Yeah. I know I definitely use it less than you, but even I jump into LinkedIn a couple of times a week to see what's going on. Yeah. It's great to see what other people are up to and get inspiration for things I might like to try someday. When I get a few minutes away from work, that is. You're right,Daniel:
there's always lots going on, and lots of great ways to follow people too. I know I'm a big fan of short videos that people post online and use them quite a lot for myself. Or for occasions when I don't have so much time, I can just post the odd photo or message. It's great.Simon:
Yep, yeah, it definitely is. I think it's also becoming one of the main challenges though for social media, you know, for small businesses in particular, you know, there's just so much that you can do and so many ways that you can do it as a business owner, you know, it's the right thing to be doing, but as the person responsible for managing your company's social media, you just have no idea where to start. It's completely overwhelming. Yeah, that's true.Daniel:
So many clients are always asking us. Where should I be posting or what should I be posting? How often is too often or not enough? What content are my followers interested in or how to grow my social media reach? I completely understand. It really is too much for people that don't specialize in that. Yeah, you'reSimon:
absolutely right. The other complication is that the correct answer is constantly changing too. With email or websites, you know, we've got a known platform. You set up a plan, uh, you set up your processes and then nothing much changes for years. But the thing with social is that stuff is changing all the time. All you've got to do, I think, is look at Instagram. It started as a simple way of posting images and sharing pictures of holidays and stuff like that with your friends. Uh, then they added in short video reels to the mix, then stories, and then algorithm changes came in that suddenly started promoting other posts too, and you got no idea where they came from. Talk about confusing for someone that doesn't spend their whole day in there. Um, that said though, you know, we've got to come back to the fact that social media is a great way to engage with people and to find new customers.Daniel:
The thing that's important though, is that people don't go to social to be sold to. Yeah, you'reSimon:
Yeah, they go there for entertainment and education. That's so true. It's the perfect platform to build your position as the guide. Then just occasionally, you can use it to send prospects to your websiteSimon:
or a sales funnel. Yeah, I think you're right. Social media can be a really powerful tool if it's used correctly. The problem is that despite its value, many people just stop posting in there. I've seen, you know, they feel like it's too much effort or they aren't getting any return. And that's a problem because I think, as we've said, there's a lot of value in there. So today listeners, what we want to take you through is a framework that's going to ensure your social media messages don't fall on deaf ears. We talk a lot about storytelling and how clear messaging makes people feel part of your story. And guess what? Your brand script can be used as a basis for your social messaging too. So here's how to do it. So Daniel, let's go from the top. Where should we start? Let's The firstDaniel:
thing you need to do is to know your audience. Everything you create needs to be tailored to your individual audience. So it's essential to know who that audience is. The biggest shift for many people here is that it is not all about you. It's not about your business, not about your company's historySimon:
or what you do. So true. It's not all about them.Daniel:
It is all about the customer, who they are, what they want and what they are interested in. ISimon:
think that's really important. Yeah, it's so true. You've really got to know your customer and you've got to know the sort of people that are tuning into your channel. It's funny you should mention that cause I was reading about an influencer not so long ago. I can't recall whether it was on TikTok or Instagram or something like that that she was on. But anyway, she had around 2 million followers and they used to watch her videos regularly and she used to talk a lot about lifestyle things and fashion tips and all that sort of stuff. Logically, she decided that with this many followers, she could diversify and set up a fashion brand of her own. Seems sensible on the surface. But the funny thing was that despite her popularity, she failed to sell the 36 t shirts that were the minimum order for her supplier. Yeah, she just got things completely wrong. Her audience was there for entertainment and to see how the other side lived. And they were mostly teenagers, you know, they had no money and no motivation to buy expensive branded clothing. So it really just shows, I think, how important it is to know your audience and to tune your content to that audience. It's absolutely true.Daniel:
So, what are the things our listeners should be looking at to defineSimon:
their audience? So, I know I've said this many times before, but the story only starts when there's a problem to solve. The first thing you need to do is to ask yourself, what is that problem? You know, what's the problem that your customer has that they want to solve? And what's your solution? You know, how are you going to help them to do that? Often when I ask new customers that I get very high level information. I've seen some awful buyer personas. It's funny that you should ask without a feeling this would be coming up. And I've pulled this out from my filing cabinet earlier. So let me just read you this. It's um, it's a persona description, an audience description I got given from a FinTech company. So it says, Mark is a technical buyer. He's likely to be a high ranking executive in his fifties who likes to stay informed on the latest technology and trends. He's respected and people look up to him for leadership and to get understanding of the technical details of a product or service, blah, blah, blah. And so it goes on anyway, it's, it's all great. But at the end of the day, who cares? You know, what's Mark's problem? What does he do? What does he need? How is he looking to transform? Yeah, that's the sort of thing that we need to know in order to really engage with the marks of the world. NowDaniel:
you know who your audience is, you can create content specifically for them. That's what will make them engage.Simon:
Exactly. When you know your audience and their problems, you can create content that helps them to solve them. You can also pull elements from the transformation section of the brand script as well as the problem one, you know, then you can show them how the lives are going to be better at the end of this. While we're talking about the brand script, I also want to mention the controlling idea. For those of you that aren't familiar with this, the controlling idea is the main thing that we want followers to remember about us after they've been engaging with us for several times. Yeah, in the case of Demodia, the idea that controls our story is that generating business online is easy when you follow a proven plan.Daniel:
And should I put that on my social media for my audience to read?Simon:
Probably not. No, it's probably more of an internal reference that you want to use to build up your social messages. Yeah, it's more of an inspiration to the marketing team or a guide for your social media content. That said though, you really can use any of the sections for your brand script to create posts.Daniel:
So if I looked at the guide section, what might my postSimon:
look like? Yeah, good question. Uh, in the guide section, we talk a lot about empathy and authority. So I think this section is really perfect for social media. You know, empathy is one of the many things that works really well. Uh, yeah. Convey something personal, which is what people are looking for on social. Um, by using empathy, you make your customer feel like they're not alone with their problem. Couple of examples I might try, you want to start, maybe you could try starting a post with something like, I know how you feel, or I've been there before, you know, you make them feel like, you know, them. Having done that, maybe you can add a splattering of authority for some good measure. So an example might be having had five years experience, or being certified experts in the field of. Those sorts of things I think work really well. And if you add in a dash of a problem, then I think you're already starting to form a great post there.Daniel:
So you should talk about the problem in an empathetic way. Perhaps it's something that you've already overcome in the past. Yeah, exactly. Then you add authority to show that you know how to solve it and you can help your customers to solveSimon:
it too. Exactly right. You know, when you start with your brand script, the possibilities are endless. Now ourDaniel:
listeners have an idea of how to create posts. How do they go about creating them more regularly? Because consistency is key. The more often you post, the more often you get shown on the hashtag pages of the hashtags you are using. I know many people struggle to come up with different and interesting things to say every day.Simon:
Yeah, you're right. It's something that I've struggled with in the past too. Uh, so your brand scripts gives you loads of things that you can talk about. But the other thing that you really need is a content plan or a social calendar. Yeah. You want to plan posts, um, that's going to guide your audience to your sales funnel and through your sales funnel that, you know, it needs to include links to your websites, lead magnets, and email subscriptions or events. So how do you create a social media calendar?Daniel:
You need to post regularly. If you don't, then the various platform algorithms will start to punish you and your customers will start wondering if you're stillSimon:
around. I think that's true. Yeah, I think companies that have stopped posting, particularly over the last couple of years, I still wonder whether they're existing or not. The other thing that I'd say though, is that your posts need to be driven by a purpose. Going back to the controlling idea that I mentioned earlier. You need to think about your social media channel in the same way as a broadcaster might think about a radio station. So imagine this, each radio station is tuned to a certain demographic or genre. Uh, you know, young people, older people, rap music, classic music, etc. When radio producers are planning stuff, you know, they think specifically about that all the time. And if they start pushing out heavy metal into a station that's targeted for older people that love classical, you know, they're going to lose listeners. And I think the same's true for social media channels, the ideas that you share have to have a common purpose and they have to be targeted for the audience of that channel. You're right. Yeah. I think so often I go into LinkedIn or any of these sort of social channels and I see companies posting things about, you know, a recent event that they attended, um, followed by a link to a webinar, maybe then a white paper or a post about a new employee. You know, if I followed that company, I often asked myself, what am I going to get out of this? Why should I bother spending the time? The controlling idea helps you to keep your content plan aligned and focused. So, what I'd recommend is that you sit down, decide your purpose, and plan ahead. It might sound daunting now, but I think it's gonna take a lot of the burden away and make your life far easier in the longDaniel:
run. You're right. It's all back down to having a plan. But how do I knowSimon:
where to start? I'd say just sit down and open your calendar. You know, there's so many quick wins that you can get already just by looking at dates in there. Uh, you know, you've got main events like, you know, New Year, Easter, those sort of things. Um, you've got product launches that are going on within your business calendar. Um, or within your industry, you can look around and see what's going on. There's often big, uh, trade shows or events that are out there that maybe you're attending or maybe are just big industry events. You can plan posts around all of those sort of things. The other thing that I think I'd suggest is to think about what you've discussed with your clients or prospects recently. You know, we've all been in there and sales discussions or talking with customers and what questions did they ask? You know, what problems were they having? Uh, it's often easiest to come up with ideas when you start with something like a focal point. Uh, if you think about one of the problems, you know, one of those questions that your customers asked earlier, and then how about coming up with five posts that explain various different. Angles on that or different aspects as to how they can solve that problem.Daniel:
I really liked that last idea. Can you explain it a little more?Simon:
Um, yeah, I would explain it. I think what I would talk about is what I call my five E's when I'm going through this. You know, when I'm talking about any social posts, I try and put them into one of these sort of five buckets. So number one is educate. So we've talked a lot about that at the moment. You know, what can you share with your customers? That's going to help them to grow. Number two is expose. So how about sharing with them something that's interesting or new or different. Three is empathize. So again, talked a lot about this, showing that you care about your customers problems and that you've been there too. Encourage is number four. Um, this is actually a really key one to do. You know, you've got to tell them to step up. You know, you need to encourage them to take action. You need to encourage them to change their lives and look for success. And then number five is back down to the entertainment. So entertain or excite, I'd say inside there. So share with them things about what's happening around you and, you know, let them know that the future is exciting. So I think if you think about all these aspects, you've got a great load of stuff that you can incorporate into your social calendar already there. One thing I would say though, how would I incorporate this in? I'd say probably educate customers four times a month, encourage them three times a month, and then maybe throw some empathy in there twice a month or so. And of course it is fine to sell to them as well. We can't forget that. I mean, that's what we're here as businesses to do. So, you know, we can promote and it's absolutely fine to promote your lead magnets, landing pages, blog posts, all of those sorts of things occasionally. But don't be too monotonous on the selling side. Typically the best practice to aim for is around a three to one ratio. So send three times your guidance emails and one times a sales message. That's about what I think I'd go for there.Daniel:
So back to the question of platforms. There are so many of them these days, and I know many people have the feeling that if they're not posting on all or a large number of them, then they're missing out. They want to do LinkedIn, TikTok and Facebook, but then it is a question of where I start and how to keep up with allSimon:
of them. Yeah, the first thing I'd say to that, Daniel, is stop. You know, anybody that's trying to do all of those sort of different platforms without a really good plan in place is just wasting their time and money. You know, it's really not necessary to try and manage so many things at once. Yeah. I'd recommend people start by choosing just one platform. You know, look at where your audience is hanging out and build something there to start off with. So for example, if you're selling to businesses, the first place I'd go and look is maybe LinkedIn. If it's consumer products, then Facebook or Instagram might be more appropriate for you. Once you built an audience in one of those places, and you know that things are working, you know that they're engaging, then I'd say is the time that you can move on and add more channels into there. And of course, you know, if you are posting to multiple channels, don't forget that you can share the same content across those different media channels. So it's not necessarily, you know, two or three times the work. Um, cross sharing is going to give you a bit more time and it's going to make your content available on different platforms without any extra effort.Daniel:
What other tips could save time in creating social media content?Simon:
Yeah, there's a couple of last things I think I'd recommend. Firstly, think about hashtags. You know, create yourself a hashtag database. If you spend a bit of time upfront researching what hashtags are trending in your industry or in your area of business, you can then put together a spreadsheet and when it comes to creating posts, you just pull that out and you've already got always got the right things to hand. You don't have to spend a lot of time and effort thinking what hashtags to use in each post. The second thing that I'd recommend is don't write posts on a daily basis. It's really inefficient, really time consuming. You'll get bored with it. Allocate time once a month or once a week. And do your posts in batches. If you've got a tool like HubSpot, then you can just upload them all in one go. And when you're done, you can watch them go out automatically. You know, it's with everything in life. It's much easier to focus when you block out some time and think about just one thing rather than trying to slot in something every day. So I think if you follow that approach, then you're always going to have a consistent pot of posts ready to go.Daniel:
So listeners, you now have a great starting point for your social mediaSimon:
strategy. Thanks for all those ideas, Daniel. I think you've got to agree listeners that there were some real gems in there. Things that you can immediately use within your social media marketing that are going to make a big difference. I particularly like the suggestion that we should all think like radio producers. When we're planning for social media, come up with a theme or a purpose for your social channel and then produce content that supports that. This concept of the controlling idea that we mentioned is really something that you don't want to forget. It's the thoughts and beliefs that you have about a topic that you're trying to convey to your audience. That's what will get you an audience. You know, people that believe in the same thing as you, if you aren't really sure how to create a social strategy that will work for your business on your own, then you can hire an authentic engagement coach. Just go to demodia. com to hire a coach that will show you how to increase the effectiveness of your marketing and find an easier way to grow your business. So, listeners, at the end of each podcast, I like to give you a set of concrete actions. These are practical steps from today's episode that you can take to immediately improve the effectiveness of your sales and marketing. In our conversation today, we talked about social media and how to create content that will captivate and engage your followers. So today. There's three things that I want you to do. First of all, I want you to define your audience. I want you to start by writing down the problem that your brand solves for your customer. Second, create your controlling idea. As we said earlier, this is going to be the purpose of your channel. The reason why people should tune in. Write that down in two to three sentences. What's the one thing you want them to remember about your channel after they've followed you for a while? Finally, I want you to create a calendar that you're going to follow for the next three months and you have to promise me that you're going to do this. Take an hour and plan out topics that you want to discuss. You should think about events, product launches and of course most importantly how you can add value to the lives of your followers your education or sympathy or encouragement. Then, when you've done that, I want you to write the posts that you're going to share during the next two weeks. These need to be in a lot more detail, the final words that you're actually going to publish. And then if you're using a tool like HubSpot to manage your social media, you can publish those directly into there and send them automatically. If not, Then I want you to put a note in your calendar to remind you to send a message out each day that you've got one scheduled. It's as easy as that. With a purpose to your channel and consistently interesting posts, your followers will engage. So that's all for today's episode. Thank you so much for listening to the Authentic Marketing Podcast. where we help you create a sales and marketing plan that will get you new customers and grow your business. Follow us and rate us wherever you listen to your podcasts and don't forget to join us on LinkedIn. We love to hear what you want to know and how we're helping your business succeed. See you next time.