Social media content isn’t something you churn out from behind a desk anymore.
It’s everywhere, so you have to be, too. Following is an outline of social media tips and best practices that will help your brand create quality content from anywhere.
On-the-go social content types
Social media stories, aka ephemeral content (Instagram Stories, Snapchat Stories, Facebook Stories): This fleeting content only lasts a short period of time, then disappears forever. Stories offer users a closer, more intimate connection with a brand that’s often not available anywhere else.
Live video (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube): Live video is a fun, less formal way to connect with followers and make them feel part of the action, no matter where you are. Brands can “go live” to instantly immerse fans into whatever situation they’re in. Live video allows fans to ask questions and get real-time answers on the channel, creating a unique, conversational moment with the brand.
Facebook Event pages: Facebook Event pages allow brands to put all their event information into one space. Event pages create a community for anyone attending an event, where users can ask questions, post photos and RSVP. As host, your brand should post relevant information in the weeks leading up to the event and regularly post updates throughout the event’s duration.
Live tweeting: Live tweeting is a great way to keep your followers in the know during an event. Latch on to an event hashtag and post it with every update so others following the hashtag can find it. Thread tweets together so followers can read one continuous story.
How to create a plan for on-the-go content
We’ve all heard it: Fail to plan, and you’ll plan to fail. It’s imperative to have a solid plan before you start creating content on the go. This doesn’t have to be a plan for every single post, but agree to general goals about post volume and topics to help ensure you’re capturing everything you need.
You’ll also need to decide which channels you’re going to post on. You can’t do everything, so pick two or three channels you see followers engaging with on a regular basis and focus on those.
A good way to check off these planning steps is to ask yourself: Why do people care about what I’m posting? Do they engage with my page’s posts on a regular basis? Is this an interesting application or a new product? Do fans of my Instagram page respond better to stories than to page posts? Have a strong reason behind what you’re doing; don’t do it just because everyone else is.
Finally, plan to fail. Inevitably, something will go wrong. Your mic might run out of batteries halfway through your live stream. Some oblivious event attendee could walk right in front of your once-in-a-lifetime Boomerang video. It happens. The good news is, if you’re prepared for these problems, you can react quickly, and your followers will never know what happened.
What technology to use
Technology can make or break your on-the-go content creation. Make sure you pack the following before you take off:
Mobile device: This one is a no-brainer. You won’t be whipping out your laptop for this (I hope). Invest in a smart mobile device with a high-quality camera and plenty of storage space for apps for the best on-the-go content results.
Wi-Fi hotspots: It’s never guaranteed that you’ll have service where you’re headed. Many event spaces charge outrageous fees for Wi-Fi, and conference centers can get so overloaded that you can’t even join a network. Bring a couple wireless hotspots with you (I suggest packing two, each from separate networks). For on-the-go content, especially live events, you can’t beat having your Wi-Fi network and a backup.
Stabilizer: Live videos don’t have to be expertly shot, but they shouldn’t give the viewer motion sickness. Ensure a smooth video by investing in an Osmo or other smartphone stabilizer. They’re relatively inexpensive, easy to use and the improvement in video quality is well worth the investment.
Microphones: Again, though no one is expecting your Facebook live stream to win an Oscar, viewers should be able to hear it. Pack at least two lavalier microphones. Make sure you test them and know how to use them before you go live.
Extra batteries: This goes without saying, but always take enough extra batteries to replace them in every piece of equipment you take.
6 apps for on-the-go content creation
These apps make it easy to create, review and publish content right from your mobile device:
MoviePro: This app is great for Facebook Live because it allows you to connect your microphone to your livestream for optimal sound quality.
Boomerang: An Instagram user favorite, Boomerang creates three-second forward-reverse videos that translate especially well on Instagram Stories. Try something involving a lot of action, like blowing up a balloon or doing a cartwheel for the best effect.
Huji: The photo app of the moment, Huji, makes every picture look like it’s shot on a disposable camera. Hey, what’s old is new again. Bonus: We have yet to find a person who doesn’t look good behind a Huji filter.
Later: As a third-party scheduling tool for Instagram, Later lets you schedule content in advance and updates the link in your bio to drive traffic to your website. The app is mobile friendly and even sends a confirmation when your content posts. There is a subscription fee on this one, but it’s well worth the investment.
Google Docs: Collaborative and mobile friendly, Google Docs is ideal for creating content, like social posts, on the go. You can upload your thoughts, ping your teammates and have them edit from wherever they are.
Social networks: Keep your brand logged in to its social networks on a mobile device (preferably one that is separate from your personal accounts) so that once your content is ready, you can publish it whenever you need to.
There you go, all our tips, tools and apps for creating on-the-go social content. You’re now well-equipped to start creating content from anywhere. The only question is, where will you go first?