Fill ‘Er Up: Distributing Your Social Media Content Like a Pro by @JenKaneCo

iStock_000011160909Smallby Jennifer Kane | Featured Contributor

Where you post content in social media is just as important as what you post.

Simply syndicating the same content to all your networks at once, once a day, can send a message to your audience that they’re not really worth the effort. (Because you’re not really making any, are you?)

To achieve real business objectives with your social media content, you need to be strategic in how you publish and distribute it, treating each of your social networks as the unique animals they are.

Think of your content like champagne and your social platforms like a tower of glasses filled in cascading order from the top to the bottom.

Establishing a distribution matrix (the order of glasses in this tower) will help you track where information flows. This knowledge will enable you to better manage your time and get the biggest return on your social media efforts.

POWER PLATFORM
First, start by identifying your company’s social media “power platform.” This social network will be the source from which your content is drawn and flows into other channels – the top glass in your tower.

Your power platform should be the platform (or platforms) in which your social media presence is strongest and in which your target audience is the most active (for many businesses this is Facebook or Twitter.)

Always let your choice of power platform be dictated by research and reports, not guesswork. No matter how big or cool a platform is, make sure the people you want to reach are there first before you begin using it.

The power platform is the platform in which you will post and premiere the most content, (likely both original and curated) the most often.

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PLAYER PLATFORM
The next level in your tower is comprised of your “player platforms.” These are social networks that are also vital to your marketing mix and deserve special care and attention.

Because your player platforms are important, don’t just syndicate content to them from your power platform. It’s worth your while to post original content in these, too — either content that is totally new (which can get to be labor intensive) or content from your power platform, presented in a different way.

In essence, your player platforms are where you can play around with the content you’ve premiered in your power platform to see what other benefits you can milk from it.

For example, let’s say you posted this piece of content in your power platform…

Have questions about landscaping your new house? Our latest blog post has some tips to get you started. [link to post].

If you don’t have anything else to put in your player platforms, you could simply repurpose the original post in a different form. For example:

Landscaping tips for new homeowners [link to post], this week’s blog post from [name of company].

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PLACEHOLDER PLATFORMS

The next level in the tower is your “placeholder platforms.” These are social networks in which you maintain some sort of presence, but that presence is not a vital component of your marketing mix.

The most efficient way to manage your placeholder platforms is to syndicate content to them from your power or player platforms.

Always set up placeholder platforms so you receive notifications from them when someone comments on the content posted there. Although you may not hang out on these platforms much, it is imperative that you stop by to chat if someone reaches out from there to communicate with you.

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REPURPOSE PLATFORMS
The final level in your content distribution tower is your “repurpose platforms.” These are content platforms where elements of your content live.

Going back to our previous example, let’s say we’re promoting that same landscaping blog post in our power platform and player platforms and syndicating those messages to our placeholder platforms. We may also want to take elements from that post, such as video or images, and share them…

•    On a board in your Pinterest account.
•    Within a video on your YouTube channel.
•    In a slide show in your SlideShare account.

Make sure all of these elements link back to the original content so your audience can explore the topic further if they wish.

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FACEBOOK: A CONTENT CATEGORY UNTO ITSELF
Take care in deciding where Facebook sits in your tower. Instead of simply being another one of your social networks, Facebook is more of a social layer — a ubiquitous platform in which nearly everyone participates.

(Because of this unique factor, Facebook should either be selected as your power platform or one of the player platform spots in your distribution tower.)

All of your community members who engage with you in other platforms (e.g. Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, etc.) are likely also on Facebook. So, when you post content in Facebook, consider that content played out and avoid syndicating it in the same form to other networks. You’ll likely just be wasting your time and energy.

So, go pop open a bottle and start stacking glasses. There is a tower of networks out there just waiting to be filled to the brim with your amazing content.

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Content and Communications Strategist – Jennifer Kane of Kane Consulting – Minneapolis, MN

JenKaneJennifer Kane is an entrepreneur and marketing/communications strategist with more than 15 years of experience working with B2B and B2C companies through her firm, Kane Consulting.

Jennifer conducts training sessions, teaches and speaks nationally on topics related to social media, content marketing, change management and digital communications. Combining humor, tough love and passion, she’s known for giving it to people straight — from the hip and from the heart.

In addition to writing for her own blog, The Social Cyborg, Jennifer is part of the author community at Steamfeed, has guest blogged for BlogWorld and Mark Schaefer’s blog, {GROW} and been syndicated on BlogHer. She is also frequent guest on the Next Stage Business Radio Network podcasts.

Jennifer is mom to one active eight-year-old and two lazy Basset Hounds and manages the “Spinal Fusions Suck” social community on Facebook. In her spare time, she thinks a lot about the zombie apocalypse and the awkwardness of writing about oneself in third person.

You can connect with Jennifer on…

Twitter: @JenKaneCo

Facebook: kaneconsulting

LinkedIn: JenKaneCo

Pinterest: JenKaneCo

Google Plus: Jennifer Kane

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