Let’s face it: Social media marketing can be tricky at times. First, you need to grapple with the latest social media algorithm changes so that your posts reach the right people at the right time (you can find out more about Facebook’s recent algorithm tweaks and what it means for your business here). Then, you need to think of fresh, innovative ways to keep your fans, followers and customers interested in your brand. Need some inspiration? Here are four ways to create engaging content so you can boost conversions and click-throughs, likes and leads, and shares and social signals.

1. Be Creative

Your social media pages are a reflection of your business brand. Play it right and you’ll be able to generate new leads and move prospects through the sales funnel. Instead of boring, bland text, spice up your social posts with images, short videos or GIFs, introduce a special offer or discount, or hold a contest. Don’t forget to include a link back to your website at the end of a post too! Infographics are also effective, especially when, according to HubSpot, 40 percent of consumers respond better to visual content than plain text. Experimenting with different types of content can build post views, generate more traffic to your site and increase the visibility of your brand.

2. Personalize Your Page Depending on the Platform

Not all social media is the same. Posting unique content on each platform — whether it’s Facebook, LinkedIn or Google+ — can help you target the right customers and encourage readers to visit your landing pages. Know your audience if you want to post engaging content that resonates with your readers. According to Brandwatch, 20 percent of Internet users who use Instagram are women, compared to 15 percent of men. On LinkedIn, it’s a different story: Twenty-four percent of Internet users who utilize the website are men, compared to 19 percent of women. For an effective lead-generation campaign, customize content for your target audience and segment your social posts based on demographic data.

3. Stay True to Your Brand Values

The most successful companies on social media generate captivating content without jeopardizing their brand values. For example, cute cat videos might not be appropriate if you own a legal firm. According to Google, marketers should create an “Identity Loyalty framework,” which defines a brand’s purpose and ideals, the behavioral attributes of its customers and a value position. Why? So a company can reinforce its values through its social marketing strategy and improve brand loyalty. Remember, your content should be on-point, relevant and consistent with your brand’s long-term objectives.

4. Stay Current

Posting about a recent sporting event or a current news story can drive interest in your brand. Many companies frequently post on social media during events like the Oscars or the Grammys and promote their products and services in the process. Brands like Coors Light and Subway did this effectively at the 2015 Oscars; their marketing teams generated buzz on Twitter with pithy posts that were retweeted hundreds of times. Adding tags or hashtags can give your posts more context, especially when you have limited space to write your marketing message on a platform like Twitter.

Social media marketing can provide you with an enormous return on your investment. Create engaging content and increase interest in your brand across various digital platforms. According to Business 2 Community, 79 percent of Facebook fans are more likely to make a purchase from your company than non-fans. But how do you convert your followers into full-fledged paying customers? Next time, you’ll find out how to transform social media users into cold, hard sales.

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