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Clayton Johnson has seen all the shifts and twists and turns during a decade of digital marketing experience.
Social media plays an important role in any online business. While your pages don’t usually translate to immediate sales, social media boosts brand awareness among your potential customers and is a great tool to develop loyal, long-term customers.
As an added bonus, it provides a ton of useful customer data. A wealth of demographic information is readily available for every person on social. This allows you to refine your buyer personas and connect with potential customers on a deeper level.
But there’s a problem: Social media is huge. Roughly 81% of the entire U.S. population has at least one social media profile. Most of these people use their profiles to connect with friends and relatives. They’re not necessarily looking to purchase products or services.
So in order for your brand to stand out in a reader’s social media feed, you need to create killer headlines. Here’s how:
Understanding Your Customer Demographics
Before you craft a headline, and before you even create content, you need to understand your potential audience. While Facebook is the most popular social media network worldwide, it might not be the best option for your brand. Sometimes a smaller social network will have a more dedicated base of potential customers.
Once you’ve determined the best social media network for your brand, you’re ready to create some content. But not all content is equal. You’ll need to decide what goals you want to achieve. Most social media content is designed to increase brand awareness, but you might also want to promote a specific product or research customer behavior.
The Four U’s Of A Great Headline
Once your content has been created, you’re ready to write some headlines. Don’t be afraid to take your time here. The headline is the first thing the reader sees. A great headline will compel the reader to click on the article. To craft this compelling headline, keep in mind the writing strategy coined by the American Writers and Artists Inc: the four U's.
The article should seem topical, relevant and vital. Readers should feel a bit nervous that they’ll miss out on important information if they skip past the article.
Phrases like “that you need to know” and “tips you can use today” convey this sense of urgency. Also, try to mention the current year or even month. This lets readers know they’re reading new content.
What practical benefits will the reader have by the end of the article? Readers want answers to problems. Your headline should promise a solution, strategy, information or something else useful for the reader.
Of course, you have to actually deliver on your claim. Failing to deliver can burn a reader and make them unlikely to return to your brand in the future.
There’s already a ton of content in the average person’s newsfeed. Your headline needs to showcase what makes your brand unique. For example, you might have a novel solution to a problem or access to specialized information.
Know-how isn’t the only way to stand out from the crowd. Your brand’s voice can be unique, too. Don’t be afraid to be funny, weird or otherwise unique in your writing style.
People respond to specifics. Instead of offering general solutions, concentrate on details. Understanding your audience is key here. What type of resources do they have available? For instance, instead of offering “Fashion Tips For Fall” try “Fashion Tips For Fall Under $25.”
Specific headlines are going to draw in a slightly smaller audience. But the readers who do respond are going to be more motivated to convert.
A brand’s social media page is about more than just getting likes and retweets. Social media is often an integral part of finding success online.