I may be new to this blog, but I am far from new when it comes to both blogging and social media. In fact, I ran a pretty active blog for about 3 years before my life became crazy and my priorities shifted. And i’ve been an early adopter of almost every social platform. But being active on social media and being savvy doesn’t always add up to success when you want to start building your brand. There are
hundreds thousands of really great companies that specialize in helping brands build a following and become more successful using social media. For those of us who can’t afford those services, there are five easy steps that, when followed, will lead to success, whatever that may be. It is important to note that before diving head first into a “strategy”, one should define what success means. For some success might be more page views and more traffic. For others, it may be followers. Defining your goals at the onset helps to tailor your overall strategy and content that you produce.
Now, to the good stuff. Here are the 5 steps, complete with real life examples:
You thought you could build a successful brand/business by just opening a social media account or buying a domain name? This is not the Field of Dreams – if you build it, they will NOT come. You have to earn a following, and one of the ways is by being active. You need to produce content and you need to produce it on a regular basis. In fact, there are some really compelling statistics (provided by HubSpot) on how posting often (4 or more posts per week) can lead to 3.5 times more traffic! But don’t take HubSpots’ word for it, just look at some influencers in your industry – are they posting 4 or more per week? When I look at my industry (Fashion), one of my favourite bloggers, Rachel Parcell of Pink Peonies blogs almost exactly 4 times per week. Not only that, she also post on average 5-7 Instagram pictures per week, keeping her followers constantly engaged.
So you’ve got it down. You’re now posting 4 or more blog posts per week, Instrgraming, Facebooking and Tweeting as often as you’ve determined is necessary, but you’re still not seeing the level of engagement you were hoping for. Easier said than done, but try and be more interesting. Take for example Gal Meets Glam blogger Julia Engel. Though she is a style/fashion blogger, she writes about more than just that. She travels a lot and shares all of her travels with her writers, all whilst promoting her style and what she wore. Try and only spend 5 minuets on her blog or Instagram page – I dare you!
Do you remember when your mother used to tell you that “honesty is the best policy”? Well, she was right. And even as an adult, this still applies. I’m not talking about telling the truth about where you bought something or for how much – I’m talking about overall honest. Being who you are and not something you are not. Honesty comes through your content and your readers, followers, fans can feel when you are being fake. I’ll use Amber Fillerup Clark of Bare Foot Blonde as an example. She really connects with her audience by being herself and letting us into her life. You feel that she is genuine in her writing and content.
I find this of the 5 points to be the hardest, especially with regards to the fashion industry. Often times the constant outfit selfies and designer items can seem like the opposite of humble. Brittany from Thrifts & Threads does an exceptional job of doing this. The blogs premise is built around mixing in thrifty finds with more expensive items. Not only that, but Brittany also publishes posts helping other wanna be bloggers and giving them tips on content creation and Instagram.
I can take any of the above mentioned fashion/style bloggers and place their content into this category. By virtue of the subject matter, most style bloggers are unprofessional. In fact, it would be difficult to come across as professional while talking about the latest purchase made at the local department store. However, it is important to note that one should not take this for granted. For many of us, the last time we created content it was either for a job or for school – both requiring a certain level of professionalism. Allowing your “voice” to come through in the fashion industry is key to gaining success.
As I embark on my journey and continue down this path, the five points will be top of mind. I would love to know your experience with them and if you think this could actually lead to success.