May 6, 2019 Katherine Haas

The Case for Optimizing Copy Across Social Platforms

When our time is limited, we often look for the shortest route, not necessarily the most effective one. On social media, it can be tempting to craft a single message and blanket it across all of your social platforms. In other words, you write a post, and then you post the same thing to your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. Though it’s not necessarily a bad thing to post the same graphic or video to each of your social platforms on the same day, it can hurt you if you’re not optimizing copy across social platforms.

What copy are we talking about?

When you post a graphic or video to social media, it’s best practice to include a caption to go along with that visual media. The caption should either give a quick summary/explanation of the graphic or video, or if it’s a video, it could tease the video’s content. In general, captions should also include a call to action.

What do you mean, “optimizing copy across social platforms”?

Optimizing copy across social platforms means crafting your messaging differently from social network to social network in an effort to take advantage of the best features of each.

Let’s look at an example. Say you wrote the following social copy to go with a graphic about your new intern, Bob.

“Introducing our new intern, Bob Boberson! Bob is from Ontario, Canada and graduated from Auburn University with a degree in International Studies.”

Now, you go into your preferred social media management tool and send out that same copy and that same graphic to your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.

WRONG!

Though that copy might be fine for Facebook, where studies have shown that users generally prefer to see fewer hashtags, it’s not the best copy you could be putting out there on Twitter and Instagram, for example. That’s because you’re missing out on some of the desired features of the other networks—like hashtags, tagging and more.

So, what should I do?

Let’s take the same example from above and show how we would craft it for each Facebook, Twitter and Instagram:

Facebook: Introducing our new intern, Bob Boberson! Bob is from Ontario, Canada and graduated from Auburn University with a degree in International Studies.

Twitter: Introducing our new intern, Bob Boberson! Bob is from #Ontario, #Canada and graduated from @AuburnU with a degree in International Studies. #EmployeeSpotlight

Instagram: Introducing our new intern, Bob Boberson! Bob is from Ontario, Canada and graduated from @auburnu with a degree in International Studies.

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. #employeespotlight #meetus #meettheteam #ontario #ontariocanada #canada #auburn #auburnuniversity #auburnal #wareagle #internationalstudies #digitalmarketing #advertising #advertisingmomentum #mcnuttpartners

See the differences? It’s the same message, just formatted differently depending on the social network. Instagram thrives on the use of more hashtags (but we like to hide them from immediate view, hence the trail of periods). Twitter copy is limited by characters, so we only add a few hashtags there. Also, on both Twitter and Instagram, we use the “@” symbol to tag Auburn University.

Why does this even matter?

In addition to making sure you are utilizing the best features of each social network, optimizing copy across social platforms also makes sure you are not posting irrelevant copy. For example, if you wrote the above Instagram example first and just sent it along to Facebook without changing it, then your Facebook copy is going to have an “@auburnu” in it that is not actually clickable or leading anywhere. Also, your Instagram hashtags are going to be overkill on Facebook.

Put plainly, it just looks messy. Taking the time to format your copy from social platform to social platform does just that—takes time—but it is time well spent in the long run. It creates a more professional look for the content your brand is putting out there, which will help to instill confidence among social media users that you know what you’re doing.

Summary

The short way is not always the most effective way, which rings true when it comes to writing copy for your social media posts. Take the time to craft your messaging so that it makes each social platform work for you, not against you.

Need help? McNutt & Partners is a full-service advertising and digital marketing agency. Contact us today for your marketing needs! Call 334-521-1010, or visit our contact page.

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