“Social Media Strategies” brings up nearly 372,000,000 results in Google. That’s a lot of articles and a lot of information. Scanning over the results on the first couple pages, however, you begin to notice something—the articles all repeat a lot of the same ideas (just to be fair… I wasn’t able to check all 372,000,000 results!).
But that uniformity does make sense. After all, the standard conventions of social media marketing exist because they generally tend to work. And if you’re anything like me, you eventually start to get bored with the same old same old.
Spoiler alert: so does your audience!
So let’s talk about a few ways to shake things up and break from tradition. Buckle up, here come 5 unconventional social media marketing tips:
1. Relevancy isn’t always relevant
Conventional wisdom says that you should keep the grand majority of your social media content at least somewhat relevant to your products and services.
After all, people who are interested enough in your industry to follow you on social media probably want to see content related to your industry, right?
Not necessarily. Let’s take a look at the fast-food industry as a case study.
Brands like Denny’s and Chipotle define themselves by posting lots of wacky, off-the-wall content. You want to take people by surprise while still relating it to your services.
By doing so, this actually garners better social media growth than brands that use mundane social media strategies (we’re looking at you, Ruby Tuesday!).
2. Use the CNN Method
CNN is a great place to get the news. And then get the same news again. And then again. The channel is infamous for running stories into the ground with repetitive coverage.
Why do they do it?
Their goal isn’t to make sure that you see their content ONLY ONCE; their goal is making sure that tons of people see their content AT LEAST ONCE.
You can apply this same strategy to your social media pages in order to maximize audience exposure: post the same content on multiple platforms, and don’t be afraid to run the same content again in a couple of weeks.
3. Do some In-Depth Microblogging
“Micro” Blogging doesn’t always need to be “micro.” Well…except for on Twitter; they’re pretty strict about the whole 140 character limit thing.
For platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn, though, experiment with longer, more in-depth posts.
These posts will likely attract less overall readership, but certain case studies have proven that longer posts also offer the potential for higher engagement rates. And that’s really what you’re looking for.
4. Take calculated risks
Many social media marketers are overly skittish about the possibility of alienating their audiences with outlandish content.
I guess they’ve never seen stunts such as JC Penny’s drunken Super Bowl fiasco.
Looking for a clever way to promote their winter clothing products, JC Penny’s sent out a number of typo-filled Tweets that had literally been typed while wearing gloves. Their followers, however, began to assume that the JC Penny’s marketing team was drunkenly Tweeting—and, seeing the attention it was garnering, the marketing team began to play along.
Thanks to this bold, fast-reacting strategy, the Tweets went viral and JC Penny’s became one of the most mentioned brands of the week without spending a single cent on Super Bowl advertising—no small feat when you consider the fact that a 30 second time slot during the Super Bowl costs an average of 4 million dollars!
Sometimes you’ve just gotta try something new.
5. Promote in real life
To end on a relatively tame note (at least compared to wacky fast food and drunk Tweeting!), let’s talk about something that a lot of “social media strategy” articles seem to ignore: word of mouth is still important.
In-person calls to action (i.e. asking a customer to follow you on Facebook or including your social media URLs on your business cards) are a great way to reach previously un-connected audiences.
Consider the fact that the fastest growing age demographic on Twitter is the 55-64 year old bracket. It’s certainly smart to incorporate traditional forms of advertising in order to bring in more traditional followers.
One of the most enjoyable aspects of social media marketing is, of course, the fact there are no rules. Anything goes as long as your audience digs it!
Hopefully the above tips have provided some new insight or inspired a new strategy…feel free to comment any thoughts or questions; and we’d love to hear some of your own unconventional social media marketing tips!
Angela Ostroff founded Bearly Marketing with the idea that Social Media should be pain free for small businesses. With a background in sales, management, and operations, Angela has built a team of dedicated and talented individuals around her in order to offer small business owners exactly what they deserve: peace of mind and excellence!