Social Media is for Suckers

There used to be a time when businesses would say “We don’t need a website, everything we do is face to face or on the phone”. 

Of course that sounds ludicrous now because everything we do is online—literally everything. If you don’t know someone or something, you Google it.

No one dares be the business that is un-google-able.

Well, I’ve got some news for you, social media has gone that way too. Yes, even if you are selling artisanal lollipops and candy canes, it will help your business.

Now in your head you might be saying “Oh man, that is so much work, do I really have to?” Well the answer to that question is, no.

But that mindset is slightly askew.

Because when websites came along, people jumped on them because they realized it was an opportunity. When social media showed up, the really smart cookies among us clamoured because it has monstrous impact.

Social media is no extra work, it is an incredibly cheap marketing opportunity, only costing you some time.

But you knew that. You’re already on top of it. That’s great!

Let’s talk about conveying your message consistently.

First, get all of your social media to look and feel the same but post on each natively. When I say natively, I just mean make sure what you are posting fits with the format of the channel.

Twitter only does 140 characters, but can use static images, animated gifs, and videos.

Instagram has a 2200 character limit, allowing a lot more text. But, Instagram doesn’t do animated gifs, just video and static imagery.

Facebook basically does it all!

So that means don’t post on Twitter with text from Instagram or Facebook that is beyond the limit of 140 characters. It comes across disjointed and with the short attention spans in social media you will likely be skimmed over instead of read.

Couldn't we just send them via a link to the other platforms and call it a day?

Your potential customers are resistant to jump from one platform to another. For instance, a link in Twitter to an image in Instagram is actually too much work for them. The easier route would be to reduce friction to your content by putting the same image directly in the tweet.

Same idea for Facebook.

Sounds like quite a bit of effort bouncing around too all of these platforms, doesn’t it? It can be and even more so if you wanted to post on LinkedIn, Snapchat and Medium.

Fortunately there are services like IFTTT and Zapier that can connect your platforms so you don’t have to manually go to all of them for every piece of content. These are free services (to a point) that can take the average social media effort to super human.

The caveat is making sure they are posting natively to your other platforms.

To give you an idea, we post a link to our latest blog posts on our Facebook page. IFTTT will pick that up and also tweet it for us. The catch is we have to be very careful about our Facebook caption lengths so they fit Twitter.

Our first attempts got us caught with this and we have since shortened those particular posts to ensure they look fantastic on either platform. On the flip side, we use hashtags for Twitter but in Facebook they seem a little out of place (we do it anyway because they do work somewhat).

Bonus tip—links in Twitter always account for 23 characters in your tweet. Something to keep in mind when you start auto-posting between accounts.

Automation will help fill out content across the board but never forget that the audiences are primed differently on each platform.

Continue to post and interact with your followers on each in unique ways. Instagram followers are looking for fun images and fortunately for you, food pics. They gobble those things up like they’re the last gingerbread cookie on the platter.

Twitter followers are keeping up with current trends and making short quips about their daily lives or events around them. In some ways it is a lot more about communication. It is more important here to be social and respond to anyone that takes the time to reply or tweet at you.

Facebook users are a lot more personal because of the friending aspect. Facebook business pages are much more common in the food and beverage industry.

We’ve seen a number of businesses use it as their second web page of sorts by providing hours and business location. This can be great for those casually surfing through Facebook but especially so if you want to run ads. From a Facebook business page you can advertise to very specific groups who might very well be in the mood for exactly what you offer.

We’re no social media experts (logos on the other hand…), but so far the most effective tactic we’ve found is being authentic and genuine. You get far more engagement when people feel like they are talking to another human.

When you are excited about your products and content, show it.

You’ll know what I mean once you start having some engagement from the robots of the social media world. Their responses are generic, can be spotted a mile away, and frankly leave nothing for you to engage back with. Avoid being a robot.

With that, stay consistent with your brand message and promise. No matter where people find you, they should feel like they are talking to the same person (even when you might have a team).

December 15, 2016
Posted on 
Author photo in a circle
Kyle Lincoln

Kyle is a logo crafter, avid reader, and writer. His experience expands across a wide spectrum of clients such as Nandos, Shaw Business, and Destination Canada. Growing up, it didn’t take him long to go from doodles to design. Kyle’s previous work in identities for conferences and events left him longing for something more enduring. He’s got a vested interest in helping businesses thrive and an eye for brand incongruences. In Vancouver he can be found scoping out his client’s location and/or the nearest gelateria and is always up to discuss your project or favourite flavour.

There used to be a time when businesses would say “We don’t need a website, everything we do is face to face or on the phone”. 

Of course that sounds ludicrous now because everything we do is online—literally everything. If you don’t know someone or something, you Google it.

No one dares be the business that is un-google-able.

Well, I’ve got some news for you, social media has gone that way too. Yes, even if you are selling artisanal lollipops and candy canes, it will help your business.

Now in your head you might be saying “Oh man, that is so much work, do I really have to?” Well the answer to that question is, no.

But that mindset is slightly askew.

Because when websites came along, people jumped on them because they realized it was an opportunity. When social media showed up, the really smart cookies among us clamoured because it has monstrous impact.

Social media is no extra work, it is an incredibly cheap marketing opportunity, only costing you some time.

But you knew that. You’re already on top of it. That’s great!

Let’s talk about conveying your message consistently.

First, get all of your social media to look and feel the same but post on each natively. When I say natively, I just mean make sure what you are posting fits with the format of the channel.

Twitter only does 140 characters, but can use static images, animated gifs, and videos.

Instagram has a 2200 character limit, allowing a lot more text. But, Instagram doesn’t do animated gifs, just video and static imagery.

Facebook basically does it all!

So that means don’t post on Twitter with text from Instagram or Facebook that is beyond the limit of 140 characters. It comes across disjointed and with the short attention spans in social media you will likely be skimmed over instead of read.

Couldn't we just send them via a link to the other platforms and call it a day?

Your potential customers are resistant to jump from one platform to another. For instance, a link in Twitter to an image in Instagram is actually too much work for them. The easier route would be to reduce friction to your content by putting the same image directly in the tweet.

Same idea for Facebook.

Sounds like quite a bit of effort bouncing around too all of these platforms, doesn’t it? It can be and even more so if you wanted to post on LinkedIn, Snapchat and Medium.

Fortunately there are services like IFTTT and Zapier that can connect your platforms so you don’t have to manually go to all of them for every piece of content. These are free services (to a point) that can take the average social media effort to super human.

The caveat is making sure they are posting natively to your other platforms.

To give you an idea, we post a link to our latest blog posts on our Facebook page. IFTTT will pick that up and also tweet it for us. The catch is we have to be very careful about our Facebook caption lengths so they fit Twitter.

Our first attempts got us caught with this and we have since shortened those particular posts to ensure they look fantastic on either platform. On the flip side, we use hashtags for Twitter but in Facebook they seem a little out of place (we do it anyway because they do work somewhat).

Bonus tip—links in Twitter always account for 23 characters in your tweet. Something to keep in mind when you start auto-posting between accounts.

Automation will help fill out content across the board but never forget that the audiences are primed differently on each platform.

Continue to post and interact with your followers on each in unique ways. Instagram followers are looking for fun images and fortunately for you, food pics. They gobble those things up like they’re the last gingerbread cookie on the platter.

Twitter followers are keeping up with current trends and making short quips about their daily lives or events around them. In some ways it is a lot more about communication. It is more important here to be social and respond to anyone that takes the time to reply or tweet at you.

Facebook users are a lot more personal because of the friending aspect. Facebook business pages are much more common in the food and beverage industry.

We’ve seen a number of businesses use it as their second web page of sorts by providing hours and business location. This can be great for those casually surfing through Facebook but especially so if you want to run ads. From a Facebook business page you can advertise to very specific groups who might very well be in the mood for exactly what you offer.

We’re no social media experts (logos on the other hand…), but so far the most effective tactic we’ve found is being authentic and genuine. You get far more engagement when people feel like they are talking to another human.

When you are excited about your products and content, show it.

You’ll know what I mean once you start having some engagement from the robots of the social media world. Their responses are generic, can be spotted a mile away, and frankly leave nothing for you to engage back with. Avoid being a robot.

With that, stay consistent with your brand message and promise. No matter where people find you, they should feel like they are talking to the same person (even when you might have a team).

December 15, 2016
Posted on 
Author photo in a circle
Kyle Lincoln

Kyle is a logo crafter, avid reader, and writer. His experience expands across a wide spectrum of clients such as Nandos, Shaw Business, and Destination Canada. Growing up, it didn’t take him long to go from doodles to design. Kyle’s previous work in identities for conferences and events left him longing for something more enduring. He’s got a vested interest in helping businesses thrive and an eye for brand incongruences. In Vancouver he can be found scoping out his client’s location and/or the nearest gelateria and is always up to discuss your project or favourite flavour.

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