Understanding the Importance of Context in Social Media Content
The Reality of Multi-Platform Posting
Most businesses and individuals use the same content across all social media platforms.
That’s ok, so long as you do it right, let’s talk about what that looks like.
Different social media platforms serve different purposes for users. When I’m on TikTok, I’m mindlessly scrolling to be entertained, kill time, or veg out. If you hit me with an ad or post for something I need in my personal life, around the house, for the kids or family – I’m listening.
When I’m on Instagram, I’m probably killing time and vegging out, similar to my mindset when I’m on TikTok, except there is an added layer, I’m also following my mentors there, and I am listening to their advice and picking up on things that might help my career and business.
On Facebook, I’m catching up with what my friends and family have shared, checking out events happening in my local area (small businesses near me), local news and news and media accounts I follow.
And then on LinkedIn, I’m very much in a networking mindset, connecting with others, keeping up on industry news, seeing what my peers are talking about and joining the discussion along with reaching out to my ideal customers.
I rarely use X (formerly known as Twitter) but on there I’m only connected to a specific segment of my industry. I can’t describe this group, but I find them on LinkedIn, some on Instagram and few on Facebook.
With all this said, simply copying and pasting the same post everywhere ignores these nuances and lessens your engagement.
Take a moment to assess your mindset on all the platforms you use. It doesn’t mean everyone is the same, but it will give you a true understanding of how a person’s mindset is different while using different platforms.
It’s not to say you can’t reach your audience with the same core content across platforms.
You just have to tune that piece of content to fit the platform.
On LinkedIn, users aren’t looking to be entertained necessarily. They mostly want to get information on their career, industry, they’re networking or learning. They’re probably even on LinkedIn while at work.
Whereas on Instagram, a user is likely using at home in their off time. While they’d interact with something related to their job or industry, thats lower on the reasons they are on Instagram. Most likely on Instagram they are looking at personal products/services, connecting with accounts about their personal interests. But if it entertains them or helps them in their daily work-life they’re listening here too.
Same with TikTok. My husband is in mining. He is on TikTok on his personal time and while it’s personal time for him, he still engages with work humor and things that resonate with his industry.
The approach is all about tailoring the content for the user mindset on that platform. Use a blog post and share the article on LinkedIn but on Instagram you might make a quick Reel with a list of bullets from the same blog post. Or share a funny meme or a quote related to the same blog post but it’s meant to target your audience when they are scrolling for pleasure.
A Smarter Approach to Social Content
Instead of blanketing all platforms with identical content, tailor your posts and the message to the specific mindset of each platform’s users.
Consider user mindset they log in and craft your content for how you think they might want to see this information. It’s a guessing game, but once something resonates you’ll know. Then you’ll be able to tailor your content more accurately.
This might mean funny memes relatable to their industry or work. But also a more serious post on LinkedIn. You can use the same topic to create both social posts – it’s the approach.
Another point people mistake is that social media isn’t just about posting; it’s about connecting with your audience.
Once you look at your content and think “how can I use this on Instagram to connect with my audience there” ideas will come more easily.
Imagine speaking to a group of business professionals the same way you’d chat with friends at a barbeque.
It would be weird right?
Similarly, LinkedIn, a platform for professionals, requires a different tone and style compared to Instagram, where users often seek visual entertainment and maybe on LinkedIn they want to read an article.
Don’t sacrifice your brand tone and voice. How would your brand speak in a professional setting versus chatting with a friend? If your brand is casual, stay casual. But also be mindful of how your audience is thinking when they see something on different platforms.
To truly resonate, your content should ‘speak the language’ of each platform’s audience.
Steps for Context-Driven Content
Analyze Your Audience
Understand the demographics and psychographics of your followers on each platform.
All platforms have a demographics for your company pages and some (LinkedIn) will break down your audience into more detail than others.
You can see the age and gender demographics along with interests and you can even go into the accounts of people following your page and see who else they follow.
Spend some time on each platform. Get a feel for the tone and type of content that works best.
This will require some testing. Whether you are new or seasoned and not seeing traction on a platform. Take a good guess based on what you know about your audience’s mindset on that platform, then alter your caption and visuals to see what hits.
The same content might actually hit well on LinkedIn and Instagram, but you have to test it.
Repurpose with Purpose
Instead of copying, adapt your content.
For LinkedIn, add a professional twist, change the tone or the words in the caption. For Instagram, make it more visually appealing.
There doesn’t have to be a stark contrast between the two posts, it may be as simple as size of the image or tone of the caption.
Use Platform Features
Each platform offers unique tools (like polls, stories, or live videos). Utilize these features to get into good graces with the algorithms and to enhance engagement.
Also utilize the types of post resonating on those platforms (Reels, Vertical Video, Carousels, Memes, Articles, Slides, Polls etc.)
Monitor & Adjust
After posting, monitor your engagement rates. If a post doesn’t perform well, consider why and adjust your strategy accordingly.
Some of this is a guessing game and testing over time will help you decipher what consistently works and on which platforms.
Remember, meeting your audience where they are isn’t about compromising your message; it’s about presenting it in a way that’s most receptive to them where they are. It doesn’t mean you have to create a different post for each platform, it just means there might be a few adjustments across platforms for the same content.
Just be mindful, don’t stress yourself and your team trying to customize each piece of content. Make adjustments to test different tone, or formality on platforms that aren’t getting much engagement.
Whenever you’re ready, here are two ways I can help you:
- Download the Asana Starter Kit. This is the system I use for my clients and my own business.
- 1:1 Strategy Session to work with you and your team to implement a holistic marketing strategy from start to finish for your clients. Including content creation, ads management and setup, social media strategy, email marketing and list-building strategies.