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There’s a lot we can learn from media richness theory about how to craft rich social media posts. Here's how you can create social media posts that turn your followers into customers at scale.
Brands (like yours) aren’t posting content to social media for the heck of it. But, if you’re not leveraging visual content or designing posts that are valuable to your audience, it’ll be difficult to generate meaningful results from your efforts.Luckily, there’s a lot we can learn from media richness theory about how to craft rich social media posts. By designing content that effectively communicates new ideas and information, you can create social media posts that turn your followers into customers at scale.To help you do just that, we’ve put together your ultimate guide for how to create rich social media content that your audience won’t be able to forget. Ready? Let’s dive in.
As we covered in our ultimate guide to visual marketing, social media richness is all about how effective content is at communicating information.The foundational idea stems from ‘Information Richness Theory’, which was proposed by Richard L. Daft and Robert H. Lengel way back in 1984. In short, this theory explains that different types of media have different capacities for communicating information.To measure this, the theory uses four key criteria:
Let’s dive a little deeper into what each of these key criteria is all about.
How connected do you feel to someone after sending a quick email or text? How about after meeting face-to-face or after finishing a lengthy phone call? The way we communicate with others has a big impact on how we feel and how well we absorb new information.In a more dynamic format (such as speaking face-to-face) we have greater opportunity to build a personal connection with someone. That might be sharing anecdotes or bonding over similar personal interests.In a more static format (such as an email or text message), our contact is transactional with less capacity to build a personal connection. So, rich content uses mediums that allow us to build a personal, emotional connection with others.
Asking questions and seeking clarification are key to ensuring we absorb the correct information. And offering opportunities for two-way conversations is a helpful way to do just that.When we talk about immediacy of feedback, it’s all about giving others that chance to be heard.From asking questions to sharing constructive feedback, dialogue and discussions is what will help users to fully absorb and engage with new ideas in a meaningful way.In the context of social media, this involves using platform features (such as comments, DMs and retweets) to give users a chance to ask questions and start a dialogue with brands.
When you look at a billboard, you’re not just looking at the image or the text. Instead, you’re reading both mediums together to understand the meaning of the ad.Skillfully blending text and imagery to communicate a single message is another key way to communicate information in effective ways.On social media, it’s all about finding ways to allow your copy and visuals to work hand-in-hand to share a single idea. That could mean crafting eye-catching graphics that use both text and images or even adding text overlays and captions to video content.
In some cases, using facts and figures is the most effective way of communicating a new idea. Other times, using natural, conversational language will help get the message across.That’s what this final element is all about: using various forms of language and symbols to share new information.By skillfully using a blend of both numbers and emotive language, you’ll deepen your connection with users and ensure they walk away with your key messages every time. When crafting content for social media, this means using a mix of text, numbers, images and even emojis to capture interest and communicate your brand’s message effectively.With these key criteria in mind, this theory helps us to rank media formats from most to least ‘rich’. At the top end of the scale we have face-to-face communication (which is said to be the most ‘rich’), followed by video, audio and finally text-based content.
So, what does this theory have to do with social media? When we talk about rich social media, we’re looking for content that:
For brands, understanding social media richness is key to ensuring your content cuts through the noise. By skillfully blending media formats and finding ways to humanise your content, you’ll be in the best position to communicate your key ideas effectively with your target audience.Plus, by curating your content to align with the pain points and needs of your audience and offering opportunities for two-way conversations, you’ll build powerful relationships that turn followers into customers.
You’re probably wondering: but how do I create rich social media content?Keep reading to discover 10 proven ways to craft engaging, dynamic social content your audience won’t be able to resist.
Understanding your audience’s needs, aspirations and challenges is what will help you give your social media posts a personal focus. The more relevant and tailored your content is to their needs, the more likely they are going to engage with and remember your brand.To design hyper-relevant social media content, you need to take the time to identify your audience’s pain points. Here are a few key questions to help you do this:
Every post you share to your social media channels should be solving a specific audience problem. That could be by educating users about a more efficient way of doing something, empowering them with a proven framework you’ve created or even promoting a product or service that can solve their biggest challenges.With these pain points in mind, you’ll be able to harness the right combination of images, text and graphics to communicate your message effectively.
Does your brand have an instantly recognisable tone of voice? If not, your audience is going to struggle to form a personal connection with your business on social media.That’s why crafting clear and consistent tone of voice guidelines is essential when creating rich social media content. In a nutshell, tone of voice is about defining how you speak to your audience and the language you use to convince and convert them.Recent studies have shown that 33% of consumers rank a distinct personality as being important to helping a brand stand out on social media. Plus, 32% noted compelling storytelling as an essential ingredient for what makes them remember a brand on social media.To help you develop your brand’s unique voice, ask yourself:
With a clear tone of voice framework in place, you’ll ensure every post you create feels unique, distinctive and memorable for users. By humanising your brand and crafting a compelling brand personality, you’ll build trust and brand preference with audiences (and boost their chances of converting, too).
A key ingredient to rich social media content is compelling, memorable messaging. And one of the best ways to achieve that is by crafting copy that draws on emotions.In a similar vein to our previous tip, this strategy is all about building rapport and a personal connection with your audience. By showing the human-side to your brand and skillfully leveraging emotive language in your copy, you’ll boost brand affinity with your ideal customers.Think about it like this: are you more likely to remember a post about dry facts and figures, or an emotive piece of content that shares a personal, engaging story?So, here are some top copywriting tips to help you craft captivating social media content:
Speaking of building rapport, taking your audience behind-the-scenes is key to giving your social media content a human focus. No matter what industry you’re working in, revealing the magic that happens in your office, studio or shop is what will build valuable trust and relatability with audiences.The good news? Social media platforms offer stacks of opportunity to take your audience behind-the-scenes, including:
The key is to be honest, authentic and relatable with your behind-the-scenes content. Rather than worrying about how professional the footage is or how perfect your content looks, focus on sharing the raw, candid side of your business.
Rich social media content offers the opportunity for two-way conversations, and that’s exactly what user-generated content is all about.The act of brands resharing content created and published by their followers is known as UGC. Whether brands repost images, reviews, videos or text from users, these pieces of content offer stacks of powerful opportunities for businesses.Here’s why your business should prioritise UGC on social media:
Clearly, UGC is a meaningful way to give a personal focus to your content and develop meaningful connections with your target audience. Need some inspiration to get started? Here are some of our favourite ways to generate and leverage UGC on social media:
Want to convey multiple messages in just one piece of content? That’s where this next tip for rich social media content comes in: make sure you’re taking advantage of all social platform features that allow text, images and graphics to work together.The more dynamic your social content is, the more engaging it is for users and the more likely they are to resonate with your key message.Plus, social media is built to harness multiple content formats, allowing you to pick and choose which medium is the best way to reach and engage your audience.In practical terms, here are some of our favourite ways to blend text and images on social media:
One of social media’s most powerful features is its ability to facilitate live video broadcasts. From Instagram to Facebook, these live streamed events allow for instant feedback from users and a deeper sense of personal connection between brands and followers.While meeting users individually face-to-face isn’t possible for brands, live streaming breaks down these traditional barriers and allows for meaningful two-way conversations in real time.To help you craft rich social content using live video broadcasts, here are some content ideas your brand can leverage:
Social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn are constantly iterating and releasing new features for brands and content creators. This offers powerful opportunities for you to craft compelling rich content to inspire deeper engagement to turn followers into customers.Social media’s interactive tools give brands (like you) the chance to gather immediate feedback on new content, product ideas and services. By harnessing these tools, you can test and refine your offering and give your followers a chance to be involved in this process, too.Looking for creative ways to harness social media’s interactive tools and platform features? Here are a few strategies you can start using on your social channels today:
Unlike other marketing platforms, social media is a place to let your brand’s personality shine. That means ditching stiff, corporate lingo for natural, conversational language that is easy for your audience to understand.In the context of social media, your copywriting should feel friendly and relatable to build trust and rapport with audiences. No one wants to read a complex, confusing caption filled with tonnes of stats, facts and figures.Instead, it’s about finding on-brand ways to communicate your message in a more casual context.In practical terms, that means:
By injecting a casual, approachable tone to your social captions, you’ll be able to get your key message across in the most effective way.
It might sound simple enough, but injecting emojis into your social posts is an easy way to create rich content on social media.By blending visuals with text, emojis allow you to communicate in audiences in dynamic, engaging ways. Rather than spell out the message you’re trying to get across, you can skillfully leverage visual emojis to do the job for you.Here are a few innovative ways to inject emojis into your social captions:
So, there you have it. When it comes to creating rich social media content, it’s all about understanding your audience and designing content that feels tailored, authentic and relatable. By leveraging social media’s unique platform features, your brand can skillfully blend visuals and text to get your message across in a more effective way. Plus, by switching up post formats you can find the right medium to communicate your ideas with your audience.
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