6 Tips for Creating Content on Social Media That Drives Referral Traffic

6 Tips for Creating Content on Social Media That Drives Referral Traffic

July 2, 2013

Brian Spero is a social media specialist who writes about business marketing and money management on the blog Money Crashers.

If you run a business and are in search of a dynamic method to reach more customers online, it’s time to explore the teeming landscape of social media marketing. When done effectively, marketing content via social channels provides businesses the opportunity to connect in ways that increase exposure, promote engagement, and spawn much desired referral traffic.

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Consider these tips to create compelling social content that drives referral traffic:

1. Drop the Sales Pitch
It’s important to respect the nature of the terrain and give your audience something a bit friendlier than a straight pitch. The content you produce – whether a blog article, press release, or Facebook post – is best received if it is educational, entertaining, and actionable. Supplying content with tangible payoff not only fortifies trust within customer relationships, but provides users with media to like and share within their circles.

2. Format for the Format
To ensure that your content makes the biggest impact, format it properly for the online audience.
Don’t bog down users with shallow sales jargon or verbose blocks of text! Instead, break your posts into bite-size bits of information that users can read quickly and understand easily.

Write compelling headlines and fill the body with focused, scannable ideas. You can say more with less when you use engaging visual imagery and video clips – which are more likely to go viral – while leaving users with an enduring emotional impression.

3. Make Sharing Easy
Like a great punchline that gets passed around, referral traffic is as much about the delivery as it is about content. Optimize your transmissions by including enlightening statistics and smart financial tips that individuals are more likely to endorse. Keep the conversation alive by including Share buttons throughout your content to outlets such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Twitter, and provide loyalty-building incentives for taking action.

4. Be Friend-Worthy
The average social user is increasingly guarded about who or what he allows into his social circles. If he turns down a friend request from the kid who sat next to him in tenth grade English class, how are you going to get your brand message in the door?

Publishing strong content that gets referred is half the battle, since your ad gains points with users when they see it shared or liked by trusted friends on their News Feed. Make sure that your information is accurate, interact respectfully with users, and distribute content of quality that leaves consumers hungry for more. Users will be more apt to share your content if it consistently contains genuinely useful offers and insight, and you maintain an active presence that builds community and stokes engagement.

5. Tune to the Appropriate Channels
Use your industry and intended demographic to decide which channels represent the highest potential. With more than a billion users worldwide, Facebook should be high on everyone’s list to grow an audience – but visual, marketing-friendly social channels such as Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube have also been identified as powerful sources for generating referral traffic.

Tailor your content to specific outlets and be sure to cross-promote, using strategies such as writing guest posts on industry blogs and supplying resource material for online media to expose your company to new pools of qualified leads. Create an authoritative presence in the most prominent places on the Web in order to grab attention, establish authority, and direct users back to the original source.

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6. Never Stop Learning
A benefit of Internet marketing is the ability to mine data on the effectiveness of your campaigns. Social media content marketing is all about taking decisive action, analyzing performance, and reacting to what you have learned. Measuring the engagement level of the content you produce allows you to develop material to achieve the desired impact; you can exponentially expand your reach and achieve results that deepen with time. Successful connections lead to higher conversions which equal increased usage, completing the circle as customer loyalty and word-of-mouth endorsements are boosted.

Final Thoughts
You have the power to put your best customers to work by inspiring them to share and promote your content for you – but with this power comes great responsibility! Treat the users in your social network more like friends, providing authentic, sharable content, and honing your approach to increase engagement. You will win brand loyalty, generate return business, and ramp up referral traffic with an elevated rate of conversions.

What other tips can you suggest for successful social media marketing?