Noise. Everyone shouting from the rooftops about their business, their special offers, and even what they had for dinner. If it was ever easy to be heard amidst the social buzz those days are over.

But that alluring trap of “me too” is so easy to fall into, especially when you’re a business owner wearing most of the hats. After the task of finding and servicing clients, along with all the internal work that goes with it, being creative enough to really connect with folks on social media can be a big ask. So what usually happens?

The typical business owner opens up Hootsuite and fills up a week or so with general industry tips and “Did you know?” themed posts.

It’s an efficient way to keep the content coming and avoid having a stagnant page. After all, visitors seeing a page that hasn’t been updated in 6+ months sends a message no one wants. But it reminds me of a saying a coach dropped on my years back:

There’s a difference between being busy and being productive.

In the same way that we can fall victim to patterns of busy work and activities that seem necessary but don’t actually produce results, having a Facebook channel full of posts that never get engagement is barely better than an empty page.

Social media breaking through the noise with raw authenticity

Help yourself craft posts with a simple exercise.

Just think about your typical experience on Facebook or the social network of your choice. Every day the news feed is full of people sharing politics, news stories, cat videos, eating, going to the gym, complaining, etc. Think of how much you scroll past compared to how many things you interact with.

What things stop you? What things make you laugh? What things focus your attention to want to know more?

This will give you some insight into your own audience. Sure, not everything translates directly from your personal news feed to your business page, but the core of what stops people is real.

Don’t be another business page that does nothing but share industry tips. First off, that’s what everyone else in your industry is doing, but secondly your potential audience probably isn’t interested. In our industry there are no shortage of marketing pages that do little beyond spouting marketing tips. But your average Facebook user isn’t interested in the latest Google algorithm changes or email newsletter tool.

Anecdotally, here are some things that have worked for us over the years.

  1. Can you make an answer to a frequently asked question humorous? This is the reason memes are popular: they work.
  2. Elevate someone else. Can you think of someone (or another business) that deserves a shout out for something local?
  3. Be raw. Share an honest experience that led to growth others can learn from, but don’t frame it as anything other than something you hope will help others (i.e. non-salesy).
  4. Photos of you, your team, or something you’re working on. People like photos, and this makes your business far more personable to invite others in.
  5. Videos, live or otherwise, of you with others. This again makes you personable, accessible, and can leverage the audience of those you include.

These do require some forethought, and often also require posting in the moment. But when your audience sees that your page is an outlet for your personality, for the community you’re creating, they’ll be more engaged.

Pair these tips with another one we’ve covered before. The answer to “How many social channels should I be on for my business?” is as many as you can feasible do at this level. If you’re finding some channels are lacking so that others can thrive, it’s time to readjust.