By: Nicole Woods, President
New Year, New You doesn’t just have to mean refreshing your personal mindset or hitting those physical New Year Resolutions. Social media tends to get a bad reputation for only showing what you want people to see versus not being the “real” you! Despite that rep, personalization and honesty have proven to be most effective in growing a brand (even if you are the brand). There are ways to improve both and fight that rep.
First, focus on specifics about what your brand is about – again, your brand can be yourself. Come up with 4-5 things you’d like to have the social media-verse see when they look at your profile. Take my personal Instagram for example; it’s about showing people all of my different sides that you definitely wouldn’t see from our company profile. Mine are – that I enjoy doing fun activities, I’m a major animal lover, I want to be an inspiration to other women who want to start their own business, and that I’m a professional.
Take those ideas and make a plan for them. Each grid of nine posts should really focus on combining the profile that you just laid out. Mix and match the order and images to be visually appealing but remember it’s not all about images. You may not have an image that says “INSPIRATIONAL”, so put that into the copy you share. I’m not saying every post needs to be a novel about struggles or how to overcome them, but you definitely want to mix in some personal details into your captions on a regular basis.
Now that you have a plan around what you want to do with your social channels, let’s go through 5 ways you can execute and change up the look and feel of your accounts.
Refresh your content with some new copy. Think about how you’re balancing your captions and talking to your audience. Is it just adding one longer, more personal, post a week to your feed or is it doing one really fun piece of copy?
I think this is one of the hardest and most complex points of a refresh, but also one of the most important. As I mentioned earlier, you really should balance your nine grid with different types of photos of yourself, your product, your passions, and even some graphics. If you’re struggling on what to post of your own content, don’t be afraid to dive into reposting something that inspires you in some sort of way. If you’re struggling to keep that content visually consistent, try one of two things – adding a thin white frame around your post or adding a filter that consistently gives you the same look. One thing to note on the filters is to make sure you go with something that continually showcases the image vs. something that dims it down. Users like to see things that are vibrant and eye-catching in their feed.
In with the new and out with the old! I suggest archiving content every 3-4 months. It keeps your feed looking curated and fresh. The best part with archiving is if you change your mind, you don’t lose the post forever. If you had success with something currently, or in the past, you can bring it back again later vs risking wearing the success out. Think of the old successful Geico commercials currently recycling on TV now along with a social activation asking their audience to vote on which they like best. This type of social interaction wasn’t available, or even considered, when the commercial first aired.
4. IG Stories
You may already be using Instagram stories, but how about we take it up a notch. Try out an app like Unfold and start adding a little extra sophistication to your stories. You don’t need everything to look like an editorial spread, but you won’t believe how easy it is to create something and how much better everything looks when you put it into one of their templates. Another way to refresh the feed is using highlights and adding cute covers so they look branded and cohesive on the page. It may seem daunting, but that’s why we’re here! You can find icon images using Google and drop them onto a solid background or go with just a solid color. It doesn’t have to be much but stepping away from the mismatched photo cover is going to be a huge face lift for your feed.
Start (or keep) engaging! We all get busy and this seems to be the first thing that falls away, but timely engagement is very important in continuing to grow your brand. Engage not just by liking, but by going out to your audience and showing them love with comments or engaging with their IG polls. Whatever you can do – even 10 minutes of engagement a day will do wonders for your community and expanding your social persona.
Now that you have your steps, go out and make this year a year of growing your brand! If you end up needing some help to really take on the social sphere, don’t be afraid to reach out to us at Viking Social Agency.
By Nicole Woods, Owner & President Viking Social Agency
IG – @bestofnicolemarie
IG – @VikingSocialAgency