‘Holy Smokes’ Content Equals Social Media Success

Not sure how to approach your strategy? Ask your audience.

January 04, 2013
KEYWORDS audience , media , social , youtube
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To tap the power of social media for business, understand your audience and generate content it will love, says one social media author and marketing expert.

“Create content that will make the audience you want to reach say ‘holy smokes,’ ” says Jason Falls during a Google+ Hangout with Entrepreneur magazine. “You need to create an emotional response.”

Falls advises businesses to do their homework about target fans and followers before embarking on a social media strategy.

“Do everything you can do to understand your audience,” says Falls. “You can make a heck of a lot smarter decisions.”

The research can be as simple as asking your audience what social media platforms they use and how. Understand what types of content they find valuable, he says.

Channel building

Many companies have been on platforms such as Facebook and Twitter for several years, but as social media grow, other services such as Pinterest are attracting attention.

If you’re starting from scratch on one of these new channels, Falls says you should:

  • Engage the right people by following, commenting, and sharing content of active users that are in your target audience; and
  • Market through traditional platforms and more established social media channels.

Tell your audience what you have to offer them and why they should follow you, he says. It isn’t enough to simply add social media logos to marketing materials.

YouTube has potential

YouTube, Google’s video-sharing social site, is a viable option for businesses, Falls says.

Including video as part of your social media strategy can:

  • Draw eyes to your content because of its search engine prominence; and
  • Humanize your brand by adding a bit of entertainment value.

And if you have any questions about what you’re doing with social media or what you should be doing, go straight to the source, he advises. “Ask your audience,” Falls says.

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Great article! Unfortunately, most employees don’t feel valued or appreciated by their supervisors or employers. In fact, research has shown that the predominant reason team members quit their jobs is because they don’t feel valued. This is in spite of the fact that employee recognition programs have proliferated in the workplace – over 90% of all organizations in the U.S. has some form of employee recognition activities in place. But most employee recognition programs are viewed with skepticism and cynicism – because they aren’t viewed as being genuine in their communication of appreciation. Getting the “employee of the month” award, receiving a certificate of recognition, or a “Way to go, team!” email just don’t get the job done. How do you communicate authentic appreciation? We have found people have different ways that they want to be shown appreciation, and if you don’t communicate in the language of appreciation important to them, you essentially “miss the mark”. Additionally, employees need to receive recognition more than once a year at their performance review. Otherwise, they view the praise as “going through the motions”. A third component of authentic appreciation is that the communication has to be about them personally – not the department, not their group, but something they did. Finally, they have to believe that you mean what you say. How you treat them has to match the words you use. If you are not sure how your team members want to be shown appreciation, the Motivating By Appreciation Inventory ( will identify the language of appreciation and specific actions preferred by each employee. You then can create a group profile for your team, so everyone knows how to encourage one another. Remember, employees want to know that they are valued for what they contribute to the success of the organization. And communicating authentic appreciation in the ways they desire it can make the difference between keeping your quality team members or having a negative work environment that everyone wants to leave. Paul White, Ph.D., is the co-author of The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace with Dr. Gary Chapman.

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