The Diaries Episode Five: The Truth About Social Media Is...
In this episode we are going to cover the number one truth about social media and blogging. And it is this: You own your blog — not Instagram, not Twitter, not Facebook and not any of the other channels.
This seems like an obvious thing to say, so why do a whole episode about social media and how you don’t own it?
As a blogger it is vital that we remember the most important assets we have are our website, our email list and our opt-ins. No algorithms can tamper with those assets. We have full control on these platforms.
How Bloggers Leverage Their Assets
Website: So for our website our primary concern is going to be our content, its quality and its SEO level. This is the content that drives all new traffic and keeps our readers coming back for more.
Email Lists: For all bloggers our email lists are like gold. An email list allows us It allows us to remain in contact with people who have said “I love your content and want to see more of it.” We can our subscribers for their opinions on our content, potential new products and offers.
So be sure to start growing your email list as soon as you start blogging. Even if you don’t know what to write about, just start your list with announcing whenever you have a new post. As time goes by you will definitely learn more effective ways to build and utilize your email list.
Opt-Ins: Your opt-in is the number one way to grow your email list organically. Figure out what your audience want from you and then provide it to them via exclusive content.
If you aren’t sure where to start use your social media to ask your readers what they would like to see from you. Ask them, “What kind of tools and resources can I give you?” Then use that intel to create meaningful opt-ins and grow your email list.
Types of Social Media Content
There are 2 types of content all bloggers create: Evergreen Content and Static Content.
Evergreen Content happens more often on our search engine platforms. It is the type of content that once created, it will continue to work for your for weeks, months, and years. This content is often found on Pinterest, YouTube, and Google.
Now when it comes to social media, the shelf life of this type of content is much shorter. Twitter content lasts for a few minutes. Instagram content may last up to 24 hours. Facebook content lasts for a day or so.
These are examples of Static Content. This is the content we have to continuously generate because its shelf life is more finite. We have to continue to feed the algorithms on social media in order to reach our own or broader audiences.
Stretching Your Social Media Content Strategies
In order to avoid total burnout, bloggers on social media should look for ways to turn static content into evergreen content; or at minimum to stretch its shelf life. The way we can do this is by repurposing.
So an Instagram story which is 15 seconds, may turn into a Reel, which may turn into a Tiktok, which may turn into Pinterest pins and Twitter Tweets.
The key to repurposing, though, is to be sure to always make the content native to the platform. Now Instagram, TikTok and Pinterest all have watermarks associated to content created within their own platforms and will penalize creators for uploading content with watermarks from another platform.
In addition to repurposing, you can also stretch your content by giving each platform’s algorithm(s) what it wants in terms of formatting. Oftentimes these social media platforms change their preferred types of content. And it behooves us to stay on top of these trends in order to increase our organic reach.
So for example, right now Instagram is all about Reels. That is a great way to reach new audiences. Pinterest is pushing Idea Pins right now; which is more of a social media venture for them as you cannot link off-site to external URLs. On YouTube they are currently pushing YouTube Shorts.
Lastly, look to see if your social media platform is creating formats which may allow you to create more Evergreen Content. For example, Instagram created Instagram Guides and IGTVs which allow content to remain relevant and searchable for a longer period of time.
Reasons Why Bloggers Should Use Social Media
Now here’s an interesting question for you. With all of the hard work bloggers put into their own channels (i.e. their website, email lists, newsletters and etc), why should they spend any time on social media? Here are the Top Three Reasons Bloggers Use Social Media:
1. Community Building: Social media platforms create spaces were blog readers can to talk to each other and the content creator. They allow bloggers to find out more about their readers and the type of content they would like to see. Social media platforms also increase engagement and readership loyalty; things that every successful blogger values.
2. Marketing: Social media platforms offer bloggers free marketing opportunities. By effectively leveraging social media, you can increase both the reach and impressions of your content organically. You can also diversify your readership as each social media platform traditionally caters to different demographics.
3. Creativity: Bloggers and content creators can flex and strengthen their creativity muscles on social media. These platforms allow us to experiment with different types of content and editing skillsets. You can dabble in video and special effects, hone your photography skills, practice public speaking and educational content delivery and more.
While we’ve covered quite a bit of practical information above don’t forget to look for ways to find joy on social media. You don’t want to be overwhelmed, feel burdened or suffer burnout.
One way to do this is to become part of a social media content creator group. These fellow bloggers and content creations can help keep you motivated and remind you to find the fun.
For more social media strategies for bloggers, please see the additional resources listed