What’s the best social media strategy? Noisy or thoughtful?

Is it more important to be noisy on social media or to be thoughtful? If you start examining this topic, you’ll quickly find that there’s a lot of noise out there! There’s a cacophony of posts, videos and other content that tries to guide businesses to best practices. No doubt - marketers over-share.

Content producers and curators like Guy Kawasaki recommend being noisy on places like Twitter [video link]. They say you need to Tweet about twice as much as you might think.

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That makes some sense, because the Twitter stream is a constant flow of stories and updates in front of the person's face. The fire hose is flowing. This is especially true of marketing and technology posts. There's just tons of it. Probably lots of Kardashian stuff, too.

So - yes - be noisy in places like Twitter.

What about being thoughtful and posting less -- like Gary Vaynerchuk or Seth Godin?

 

Here's an example of a high value, high quality Twitter post from Gary Vaynerchuk.

Here's an example of a high value, high quality Twitter post from Gary Vaynerchuk.

There's definitely a case for creating content that has high value. Not that Guy Kawasaki isn't producing high value content. It's just that a lot of the curated content can be noisy and low value (yet entertaining in many cases).

My contention is that you need to do both. You need to create high value content and target audiences correctly. But you also need to be noisy on the right channels.

For Twitter, you might post 20, 30 or 40 times a day, without worrying about repetition (per Guy Kawasaki's approach). On channel like LinkedIn, you want to be there when your business audience wakes up in the morning. It's kind of like email, where business associates are going to check it first thing in the morning or second thing in the morning. If you want to make sure you've got east coast people covered and you're on the west coast, then schedule posts for 5am or 4am with a tool like Hootsuite so they'll see it in the morning wake-up stream. Then you could schedule one or two more posts for the day around lunch time or the end of the day when people wrapping up.

A Facebook strategy would be similar to LinkedIn. Facebook is more important for for consumer brands, of course. The orientation of the audience is more personal and less LinkedIn serious. Pinterest is a little more like Twitter, except the content has to be visually appealing. While Twitter is more like a fire hose that's on all day, Pinterest is checked sporadically throughout the day. The typical user is likely to be intentionally zeroing in on a specific topic. You want to be there with a lot of pins for your particular category or keyword focus. What you need is a process for creating or sharing visually appealing images as fast as you can. This could be your physical product in action or images of a service/software product that have been "productized." Think about those virtual product boxes software companies create for their downloads.

Ok - so bottom line here is to be a few things -- 1) noisy where it's appropriate, 2) targeted and cognizant about where you're posting and when, and 3) focused on creating quality, thoughtful content and keeping that in front of people at the right times, on the right social media channels.

Think about how these rules apply to things like Medium, Snapchat, Vine and Instagram, too. These will be increasingly relevant platforms moving forward -- especially with the younger demographics.