Authentic content is one of those buzzwords/phrases that has been thrown around a fair bit over the past couple of years.
But when you break it down, it’s about being there for your ideal customer/reader/client and giving them not only something of value but insights into the everyday.
Do people really want to see my authentic self and the nitty-gritty of the day-to-day? The answer is, YES!
What you’re looking for is content that will:
- Build trust with your audience
- Showcase your product/brand/services/book
- Demonstrate why you are the ‘top pick’ over the competition
- Communicate your key message
- Prompt a call to action.
While the latter (call to action) is important, remember that not all posts have to be the ‘hard sell’. This is where behind-the-scenes and day-in-the-life content can help complement your more branded posts and help tell your story.
Content ideas for writers, illustrators, business owners
In the publishing context and bookish space, here are some content ideas for your Instagram, Facebook and other social platforms:
- Where I write | My writing space (#whereIwrite is a popular hashtag I’ve noticed in the writing community) – Take a pic of your home office or ‘mobile office’ if you’re using your laptop on the go
- Share your writing routine – Are you a plotter? A pantser? This could be a longer-form blog piece or snapshot in the form of an engaging reel or carousel on Instagram
- Write about an author who has influenced your writing
- Review a book within your genre or share a #shelfie – I love taking snaps in my local bookstore or library and sharing them with the writing/bookish community
- Explore a hobby you enjoy outside of your writing – Your social feed doesn’t have to be about the same thing. Why not mix it up and share something you pursue outside your regular writing schedule or day job? For me – this is trail running and jogging
- Love your library – It’s no secret that I’m a big supporter of my local library and advocate for their easy book borrowing and school holiday programs. Use hashtags like #lovemylibrary
- Last, but not least, share the different ways writers can support you and other authors. Maybe it’s a shoutout to your favourite author blogs and book review blogs. Again, I’m a big advocate for children’s literature and middle-grade/YA books here in Australia. Tag your fellow authors, celebrate their wins in writing competitions, and join in the conversation!
For business owners with a particular product or service, here are some social media content ideas to get you started:
- Behind-the-scenes content – Pack an order with me, meet the team, tour of office/warehouse (this doesn’t have to be a ‘mega production’ – a short clip on your iPhone or a few snaps can be just as effective)
- FAQs – Pick a few commonly asked questions about your service/product and film answers to them. This is all about responding to your customers’ needs in a direct and practical way
- Lessons you’ve learned in business
- Your business journey – i.e ‘how it started vs how it’s going’
- How is your offering unique? Why should customers pick you over the raft of other products/services on the market – you could demonstrate product usage or have a real-life testimonial
- Tips & tricks or insights into your industry.
At the end of the day – whether you’re an emerging author, established writer, bookseller, or small business owner – it’s all about showing up for your ideal reader/customer.
For every post that contains a marketing pitch, industry insight or call to action, ensure you are balancing that with organic content (behind-the-scenes, hobbies, day in the life).
This will build trust with your audience, and aid with your overall storytelling.
Yes – aesthetics count when it comes to things like Instagram feeds, and strategic marketing plans and scheduling apps are important for SMEs, but if you’re just dipping your toes into the social media space (not to mention trying to write a book or secure a sale in the meantime), avoid the overwhelm by using some of the above content ideas.