With mobile devices in almost every hand 24/7, social media is increasingly the communications channel of choice for 70 percent of Americans. And businesses are taking notice, rethinking and retooling traditional strategies, and learning how to create a brand story via social channels.
There’s evidence. Spending on social media ads was up 60 percent year-over-year in the first quarter of 2017, and comprised nearly 40 percent of total advertising budgets. Social media videos are the fastest growing marketing tool, accounting for $4 billion dollars in 2017, twice the rate of spending on social media videos in 2016. The key to understanding how to tell your brand story effectively on social platforms is to make it eye-catching, accessible and engaging – i.e., visual, snackable and interactive – to get your audience’s attention and keep them coming back for more.
How to Create a Brand Story Effectively Via Social Media
Make it visual.
Typical television commercials are 30 or 60 seconds long, but when you use social media, your opportunity to grab your audience’s attention is significantly less – about five seconds. Video and graphics rule the social landscape; they’re essential to capturing this narrow window of attention. Nearly three-quarters of social media marketers (74%) use visual assets in their social media marketing. On Facebook specifically, engagement is highest on posts with videos and photos.
Consider embedding impactful graphics within the content itself. Visuals such as graphs, charts, sidebars, illustrations and others not only serve to break up text and make your content more appealing and engaging, they can help illustrate and emphasize important messages. Look at your content through this visual lens, and challenge yourself to communicate key points of your brand story in creative ways.
Make it interactive.
If you’re already including photos and videos with your social media content, don’t stop there. Take your brand story to the next level by making it more interactive. Experiment with Facebook Live and Instagram Stories to give your audience a personal, behind-the-scenes perspective. These are opportunities to show a less curated, more authentic side of your organization and its people.
Make it snackable.
The short-form nature of social media forces you to get to the point, and fast. Showcase highlights of your brand story; tease your reader to want more, ultimately leading them to read one of your blog posts or to download an asset that reveals additional layers of your story. Being bound by character count pushes you to think critically about your content’s message and how to quickly illustrate its value to followers.
Storytelling is a powerful technique; it helps you move beyond the mindset and mechanics of simply selling a product or service. And by leveraging social media in how you create a brand story, you’re meeting your audience where they’re spending most of their time. This is an advantage. Use it.