It may seem that making one post for each of your social media channels is a quick and easy way to navigate social media. You can use scheduling platforms like Buffer, Hootsuite, HubSpot, etc. to write posts for the upcoming week, but that can quickly lead to scheduling the exact same post for each account. As it happens, Wildheart did this for a time until we learnt from Hootsuite that it’s better to not post the same message across all social media platforms, but re-write posts so they vary from each other.
If someone sees the same post on Facebook and Twitter, they may feel the post is less special and was simply churned out mechanically. In this article we share best practices for writing up social posts and how to avoid making all your posts the same. We offer six actionable tips that you can apply to your social media strategy straight away.
1. Tag people
Tagging people is the first step in diversifying your social media presence. If you want to share a blog post from another yoga business, an article on the health benefits of yoga, or to give a shoutout to a guest teacher at your studio, each of those businesses will have different accounts in use.
This is why if you just drop the name of the business or person in your post, they may never see it. Take the time to go through each individual post and tag them using the ‘@’ symbol wherever possible. Most companies’ username looks different on each account.
So, the easiest way to know whether you’re tagging the right person is to go onto their website and look for their social media icons. Typically, they’re in the footer of the website. If you can’t find these icons in the footer, you may need to do a manual search on each social media platform.
This is why a good logo and colour palette are important. Let’s say someone is searching for your yoga business’s social media, they’ll be looking for your logo and colours because they want to know that they’ve found the right account. Regardless, people are usually appreciative when you tag them on social media because it means that you care enough to take the time to look them up and give them credit for the post.
2. Change up your content
This is really quite simple and we’ll give you an example from our own scheduled posts. For each post, edit the words and phrases. What are you saying and how do you say it? Do you say that you’re, ‘excited for this special yoga teacher to come and visit’ your yoga studio? When you go to write the same post on a different social media channel, change it to, ‘we can’t wait for this amazing yoga instructor to visit our studio and teach their workshop’.
Notice how for LinkedIn we went with a more professional vibe versus a more casual approach for Instagram. So, we’re sharing the same link from the same post to add a coherence across our platforms, but we also make sure that each post is unique to the platform we’re posting on.
3. Watch out for the word limit
The word limit of your posts varies depending on the channel. Twitter only allows 280 characters, LinkedIn allows 1,300, Facebook 2,000 and Instagram at 2,200 characters.
A quick guide for social media word length: even if you have space in a post for more words, it doesn’t mean you should fill it to the maximum limit. More is not always better — carefully choose the words you want to use instead of putting down as much information as possible.
LinkedIn and Facebook posts can have more text, as people often gravitate towards those platforms for information. Twitter is the best place to practise featuring only the most crucial information. Instagram should also lean towards fewer characters — why, when there’s a larger character limit? Because Instagram requires visuals to accompany content, so followers focus on the image/video first and are less likely to read through a post with lengthy text (unless it’s from a celebrity or someone they’re close to).
So, a rule of thumb for the major platforms we’ve mentioned: when you upload videos, you may want your content to be shorter. If you have a dynamic photo, people will look for a description to find meaning behind the photo and that’s when you can expand the length of your content.
4. Edit your images
Edit your images to fit the particular platform you’re using. Don’t simply copy and paste without checking if the image looks good. If you aren’t sure how to edit your images for each platform, or how to edit an image using social media scheduling software (like Hootsuite or Buffer), then look out for our upcoming post teaching you how to do this.
One issue to watch out for is whether your image is landscape or portrait. Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn prefer landscape images, while Instagram allows several different shapes. The bigger issue here is that Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn have different preferred image sizes. So, make sure you edit your image to the correct dimensions before posting to each channel.
5. Timing is everything
Knowing when to publish your posts on each channel will mostly depend on your audience, which can take some experimentation. Common factors can include the type of followers on each channel, their age, sex, region, type of yoga they practise, and of course time zone. If you have some followers in Europe and others in the US for example, you’ll need to take this into account.
The key here is testing. You should run tests by posting for a certain amount of time — two weeks or a month at a certain time of day — and then change the time you post. After a couple of weeks, take note if there’s a change. It may not be apparent straight away, so you may need to change the type of posts you publish.
Wildheart’s advice for posting times:
- Facebook — people tend to frequent Facebook in their downtime when work is done. So, mornings before work, evenings after work and weekends are best.
- Instagram — people use Instagram to show adventures, yoga poses etc., which means that people need downtime to take these photos and videos, so evenings, nights and weekends are the most popular.
- LinkedIn — since this is a professional site, early morning before work and lunchtime is most popular (think of someone at work and looking for business-related information during their breaks).
- Twitter — since Tweets are so short, their purpose is for quick snippets of information. So, before work, mid-morning and lunchtime are popular times.
6. What about emojis?
Our advice is to use emojis wisely — all internet goers are bombarded on a regular basis with advertisements. Many of these ads try to be flashy and approachable, which is why they’re often overloaded with emojis. It can cheapen your posts and accounts if you use too many emojis.
So, here are our tips for using emojis in social media.
Don’t use emojis on LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a more professional network and emojis aren’t always perceived as being professional. On the other hand, emojis are used frequently on Instagram, often on Facebook and occasionally on Twitter. Since Instagram is highly visual, and Facebook added an option where people can post their moods, emojis seem to fit naturally. Twitter doesn’t have much space, so only use them when they’re pertinent to your post.
How do you know when a post needs an emoji?
Don’t use an emoji simply because you like it or because you think your post needs one without having a concrete explanation as to why. There are many types of emojis these days, so find one that fits the scenario of the post. Are you answering a question? There’s an emoji of a person raising their hand. Are you curious about something? There’s an emoji grasping its chin and looking upwards, mimicking someone deep in thought. Whatever you’re posting, ask yourself if an emoji fits in naturally or helps to convey an emotion.
Make each post unique
Our last tip is to make each post unique. Copy and paste the content from a post on one platform to another, then edit the words and phrasing until it’s an entirely new post. It will be more work than copying and pasting everything word-for-word, but less work than writing an entirely new post for each social media account. Let’s say you begin on LinkedIn: If you copy and paste all the words into Instagram, edit the words, switch around the sentences and maybe add an emoji if it fits with the post. Soon enough, you’ll have an entirely different post that’s still about the same topic.
- Tag people/businesses from a post you found on their site.
- Edit/rewrite your content for each platform.
- Edit your images to fit on the particular platform.
- Don’t exceed your word limit (and don’t fill out a post right up to it, either).
- Find a good time to publish your posts and experiment with it.
- Only use emojis if they make sense for the post and platform.
Finally, remember that no more than a third of your posts should be self-promotional. People like to read and watch interesting things, they’re looking for information and to be entertained, so if all your posts are about how people should come to your yoga studio, your followers may not be very interested.
So, follow the above tips and you’ll soon have a more unique, diverse presence on social media. If you aren’t sure which social media platforms you should be on, then take a look at the first post in this series Which social media channels should your yoga business use? to get some advice.
Read the next post in this series
Check out the third and final post in this series How to use yoga images on social media.
Or go back to Blog series: Social media for your yoga business.