For the past few months I’ve been building up a social media presence for the company I’m working for, SaferVPN, a service for people concerned about online privacy and security.
All the big shots in content marketing speak a lot about mixing up your brand’s promotional content with news and content from other sources. Hubspot speaks about the 80/20 rule of content promotion, stating that 80% of the content you share should be purely helpful and non-promotional, and the remaining 20% should be promoting your brand. Also Kevan Lee from Buffer discusses several different ratios for content sharing on social media, but reveals that 90% of the content they share is their own and just the remaining 10% is sourced content.
Now if you’re a content marketer like me, it makes perfect sense to mix up your own promotional content with sourced content relevant to your service. In my case that would be the latest news about online security threats and privacy issues. You don’t want to be overly salesy because (A) it’s not fun, and (B) nobody likes that kind of salesperson. Today’s content marketing is about providing value to your customers, offering solutions to their problems and being a thought leader in your field.
Since building up our social media following, I’ve spent a lot of time sourcing quality news related to privacy and security to share with our followers. Sharing such articles on Twitter and in different Google+ groups gives us a bit of brand exposure as they see our brand’s avatar. Yet, the problem is that we’re sending traffic away from our social media channels – but then where?
For a long time I was questioning how worthwhile it was to share all that sourced content. There was no way to measure neither direct website traffic nor signups as a result of the articles I shared. Try justifying to your CEO all those hours spent sourcing content and they will likely have a hard time seeing the value of it. Sure, our social media following is growing steadily and that’s great. But we have to be able to leverage it to drive traffic to our site, and in the long run, signups.
That’s why I was so happy to find Sniply. If you’re not familiar with it yet, this is how it works in brief: paste the link you want to shorten, customize a small speech bubble or bar in the bottom with your brand’s logo, a call to action and a button. It’s super easy to use and it takes less a minute to customize your Sniply link. Here’s how it looks:
In the above example I wanted to share an article on how to stay safe when you’re using public WiFi, which is something our service helps users do. Just sharing the article itself is surely helpful – but then what? After sharing the article, I need to help educate our followers how our service can help them against the security threats explained in the article. If the visitor clicks the ‘Learn More’ button, I can decide where to direct them, for example to a landing page about security, or to a blog article about the topic. The beauty of it is that you get highly qualitative leads because you’re sharing content about the topics that your ideal users are interested in.
Once you have created a Sniply, just share the link in all your relevant social media channels. It’s so smart that even when you paste the link into Facebook, it will be automatically be shown as if it came straight from the site you are linking to, for example:
As you can see, it looks like any normal link and it loads both the title and image properly from the article I’m linking to.
I was a bit reluctant at first whether or not people would share my Sniplys, because after all, that’s how you get a lot of visibility and it also gives you social proof from your followers. To my happy surprise, people actually share my Sniplys!
Once I’ve shared my Sniplys, I can track and analyze all the data in my Dashboard. That way I get a clear overview of the overall performance of my shared links. Perhaps more important, I can easily analyze link by link to see what type of articles gets the most clicks and highest conversions. I can finally justify promoting sourced content on social media and actually get some return on the time spent doing so!
Bottom-line: Sniply is a helpful tool in my content marketing arsenal since it helps me bring in qualified website visitors from my social media channels. You should try it too!
If Sniply has helped you in your social media marketing I’d love to hear how, feel free to share your tips in the comments below!