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Playing the Long Game: Consistency in Social Media

I recently started a new gig at Callahan Creek, my first agency job; so I was a little anxious about writing my first blogpost for callahancreek.com. Luckily, I remembered some excellent advice from my favorite advisor Mark Twain: “Write what you know.” Well, for the last three years I’ve been working in athletics and social media, building the largest social following in all of NCAA basketball. So that’s what I know.

Bear with me; this post is going to be one big sports analogy.

Here’s the thing. In sports, most of the attention is paid to a small percentage of the action. The home runs, the Hail Marys, the half-court buzzer beaters. It’s the same in social media. Everybody wants the perfectly timed pop culture quip, the unbelievable vine, the utterly hilarious meme. Every once in awhile your strategy, creativity, and luck will come together just right and you’ll hit a social media three-pointer from way downtown. You’ll be the talk of the social media world. But just ask University of Kansas men’s basketball coach Bill Self; this kind of success is “fool’s gold.”

“You can’t bank on making 55 percent or 50 percent of your threes,” he says.

You shouldn’t count on it in your social media strategy, either.

In social media, as in sports, the actions that get talked about most are rarely the most impactful. The content that gets noticed by AdWeek isn’t necessarily what gets the community’s engagement. The unbelievable 360 dunk is still only worth two points.

Instead, what counts is consistency.

Give your audience a single every day, a three-point play each week, and once in an odd while, you’ll connect on a flea flicker. This is what social media is good for. Building and reinforcing a brand image in the public mind with consistent, high-quality, bite-size content. The greats show up every day.

Get the simple stuff down. Reinforce your brand visually, engage in conversation, and raise the bar on your content standards. Once you’ve got that, you can start to get fancy.

As usual, Coach Self said it better than I can…

“You’ve got to be able to score close to the basket. That’s the name of the game, in my opinion. Getting easy baskets.”

There you have it.

Originally written for CallahanCreek.com

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