New Year's Resolutions for Social Media Content Creation

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  • 12/28/2016
    It’s about that time of the year again where almost all of your friends, family and random Facebook strangers are posting about their amazing (and maybe unrealistic) goals for 2017. Then, they make you wash their story down with this statement: “New year, new me.”


    As marketers, we often overlook New Year’s Resolutions because they feel more personal rather than company-wide. Sure, there are several articles on Google suggesting the top trends for 2017 and how to incorporate them (we have our own version of that too, by the way); however, what resolutions are content marketers making for social media?

    There’s almost no way to be 100% ahead of the game in the ever-changing world of social media. If someone tells you they’re farther ahead than the rest of us, they’re lying. Luckily, in most fields, there are certain tendencies and fads that seem to be here to stay. So while you’re contemplating how much weight you want to lose, what kind of foods you want to avoid and who you want to be nicer to this year, don’t forget about your company’s social media content strategy.

    When considering what kind of social media content you want more of on your channels in 2017, it’s best to start with the basics of how to create resolutions that you’ll actually stick to. Pull out the legal pad, two different color pens and repeat this, “I will not write ridiculous resolutions.”

    Got it? Good, now let’s cover two key elements of resolution and goal writing.

    Resolution Writing 101

    First, have a legitimate reason as to why you’re working toward the resolution in the new year. Maybe it’s content that you’ve always wanted to do, but didn’t give yourself enough time for, or maybe it’s that you need to create a whole new content approach to succeed. Whatever the case, make sure there’s a solid reason behind what you’re planning to do. In addition, ensure there’s a real passion for the new content resolution too. Without it, the messaging will feel lackluster and you’ll potentially waste time trying to make it work.

    Second, just like business goals, there’s no room for vagueness in resolution setting. In fact, just saying “I want to increase my page likes” with no plan and without any specific metrics in mind sets you up for failure. Granted, gaining one new page like would meet that goal, so be specific and set measurable goals. If you want to increase page likes, place a “by X% or X number” after that bad boy and you’re off to a better, more realistic resolution.

    Resolved: Your Social Media for 2017

    Now that we’ve gotten the formalities over with, let’s focus on what possible New Year’s Resolutions are out there for your social media content…

    Let’s break this down:

    1. Go Live, get streaming and get real in the moment

    If you’ve noticed, there are plenty of platforms right now jumping on the live streaming bandwagon. From Periscope and Twitter #GoLive to Facebook Live and Instagram’s freshly rolled out live streaming application, there’s something big happening in the market. People want to see what’s happening right in the moment, without having to wait to see replay later. Keep an eye out for live streaming opportunities in 2017.

    Looking for best practices for live video moments? We’ve got a blog post for that too.

    2. Plan before throwing some content at the wall

    If your content creation meetings start with “sure let’s try it” and end with “maybe that will surprise us,” you’re probably setting yourself up for social media failure. While it’s always good practice to take strategic risks on the ever-changing platforms of social media, without planning ahead your content is sure to bite the dust. There’s no doubt a lot of noise online and adding to it just to join the conversation doesn’t pan out well that often. Stop wasting valuable conversation space, plan your content in advance with long-term editorial calendars and content calendars that cover the goals, audiences and messages being applied to each tactic. 

    Not sure how to start a social media marketing strategy? Let us help explain the first phase of planning.

    3. Stop applauding your own content

    Ugh, we’ve seen this countless of times where brands like, favorite or retweet their own content in the hopes that this will garner more reach. (And maybe it’s an accident, too.) Step away from the mouse and keyboard, friends. Not only does this look incredibly tacky, but it’s just bad practice on social media. If you planned the strategic piece of content, it’s clear that your brand is behind the idea, meaning there’s no need to applaud yourself for this. Let the fans decide. And if you are accidentally liking your own content, let’s make a side resolution to be more careful about which accounts we’re logged into when viewing content!

    4. Consider visuals, visuals, visuals

    Unsurprisingly, and similar to age-old trends, adding media content to your social media posts increases the chance of engagement immensely. Whether it’s a captivating photo, Canva created shareable, professionally designed creative piece or a video, users are more likely to stop on the content you post if there’s something big in their feed that stops them from scrolling right on past. One mantra you might want to have for 2017 is, “Make ‘em stop scrolling.”

    5. Quit acting like a bulletin board

    We get it, you’ve got a lot going on in your world, but is everyone actually going to care about each company update or product push? Probably not—so don’t waste the space on social media. Your brand’s social media channels are not a bulletin board, so constantly posting every hour on the hour is likely not a good plan. Instead of just posting to post, include content pieces that your audience is interested in, even if that means sometimes curating content to fit their needs.

    6. Budget for social media ads

    2017 is bringing new changes to the ad space for social media marketers, and if you caught our 2017 TRENDS book, you know the gist of what’s to come for the digital ad worlds. Ads in the social media space are getting more competitive and marketers ought to plan ahead for their budgets. Rather than making that portion of the budget an afterthought, it needs to be at the forefront of the conversation.

    7. Get off center stage

    There’s nothing worse than watching a comedy act and thinking, “Wow, you can sit down now.” Similarly, social media users don’t want to constantly hear about how wonderful you are as a brand all of the time. While it’s a great idea to share noteworthy items or awards your company has received, there’s little to no room for ego boasting content on social media platforms. Focus less on you and more on your audiences. 

    8. Break down the four walls

    We talk a lot of busting down the silos of your business in our 2017 TRENDS book, and it absolutely applies to the social media landscape in 2017. Much like the concept of making social media marketing a first thought while budgeting, you’ll definitely want to integrate your social media plan throughout the entire office too. Talk with your creative team, your HR team, your employees and basically anyone in the organization about social media goals and objectives. Encourage them to share the brand’s content, post their own brand-related content, as well as like and follow the social media pages available. Doing so will help bolster your fan base, increase content that your audience will likely want to see and create comradery within the office.

    There’s plenty to look forward to in the social media marketing scene in 2017, but don’t forget to reflect on the habits, good or bad, that your brand had in 2016. Rather than focusing solely on not eating the office donuts every morning before your meetings, throw one or two of these resolutions in your line of vision for the new year.

    Thinking about making a social media marketing resolution, but need more help? Give us a call or drop us a note, and let our social media team help you reach success and your new resolution by the end of 2017.  

    About the author::
    Hanna Steinker is the Social Media Coordinator at thunder::tech. She connects her clients with the right channels, audience, and develops and executes social media strategies. She also loves her cat, a healthy debate and strong tequila. 

    Madison Letizia is the Communications Department Manager at thunder::tech. She develops digital content marketing strategies that help clients reach their overall business goals. An easy way to win a place in her heart is with pasta, Milky Ways or any viral video including a goat.
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