Organic social media is about creating a relationship with your buyers, raising brand awareness, and establishing the voice and character of your brand. With that in mind, here are the best strategies for optimizing your social media presence.

Create Quality, Shareable Content

It may seem like a no-brainer, but quality content is essential to a successful social media strategy . . . and a lot of businesses miss the mark. It’s understandable. Engaging content is harder to create than it seems, and a lot of our business instincts don’t serve us well when it comes to social media.

The huge platform of social media can feel like a great opportunity to promote your brand and products, brag about your recent successes and accolades, and sprinkle those CTAs all over your followers’ news feeds. The truth is, that’s a sure-fire way to drive buyers to the “unfollow” button. When creating organic social media content, think more about establishing your brand voice and personality, and less about making sales. Design content users would want to share—funny or inspiring videos, interesting photos, helpful infographics or educational posts. Make sure you’re partnering with a trustworthy agency when pursuing any kind of video marketing campaign.

Also remember to diversify the content you put out there. It’s still important to cater to the specific platform, but play around within that platform’s perimeters. Experiment with video, links, images, and gifs. Try entertaining, inspiring, informing, and asking questions. And don’t forget to share content! You can really endear yourself to buyers by amplifying the voices of customers and other social media users.

Learn to Schedule Your Social Content Strategically

Make deliberate decisions about when and how frequently you post.

Remember, quality is more important than quantity. Visibility is a powerful thing, but if you post 30 times a day, you’re at risk of going from interesting social media contributor to white noise. The ideal frequency varies depending on the platform, industry, and type of content. But for most platforms, the sweet spot is around two posts per day. It’s not a bad idea to start there and adjust based on your metrics.

Time of day isn’t an exact science, either, though speaking in very general terms, engagement tends to be highest on weekdays between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m., and again on late Sunday morning.  

More important than timing and frequency, however, is consistency. A steady routine of three posts per week isn’t the best case scenario, but it’s far better than posting twice a day for two weeks than going silent for a month because you overwhelmed yourself with your posting schedule. Set an attainable content schedule now. A scheduling tool like CoSchedule or HootSuite can help you stick to a routine.

Increase Your Social Media Visibility

Once you’ve done all this work to establish a social media presence, make every effort to let people know you’re there. Include social media handles on your website, in your brochures, and on signage. Remember to include effective keywords when filling out your profile and creating new content. Do your hashtag research to keep on top of current trends so you can hashtag effectively and make it easier for users to find you.

Perhaps most importantly, engage. Reply to comments on your posts and acknowledge shares. Answer questions and comments quickly, and create content that asks your followers for their insights and opinions. Also take time to respond to the social media posts you find compelling. Do some liking, sharing, and commenting of your own.

Monitor and Optimize Your Social Media Marketing Campaign

Like all things in life, social media marketing calls for a certain degree of trial and error. Even when you’ve done the necessary preparation, you may still find that certain content falls flat. Or you might be surprised by what goes viral. Most platforms give business pages performance insights that extend well beyond how many likes and shares you’ve received. You can also use a social media management tool like AgoraPulse to see how your hashtags are working for you, audit your customer service, and even check in on the competition. All this information allows you to make your social media efforts increasingly effective.

Now that you know some best practices for organic social media marketing, let’s go over essential strategies for social media advertising.