At this time of year, your inbox and social feeds are probably full of “annual review” and “what we learned in 2020” updates. While many are valuable and teach us something (especially ‘Google’s year in search‘), one of the best things you can actually learn from, is analysing your own social media content, and working out which of YOUR posts delivered the biggest impact for you.
I don’t need to tell you that 2020 has been a very different (and challenging) year compared to all others before it, and so you may be surprised which social media posts worked, and which fell short. Remember that on the social platforms, there’s no generic right or wrong – there’s right (or wrong) for you and your audience. Learn from your own data, and start 2021 on the front foot knowing what worked during 2020, and maybe aim to replicate a little of that success as we kick off another year which will be anything but normal.
Here’s our Top Social Posts of 2020, and a short explanation of why we think they delivered.
Top Twitter Tweet of 2020:
— Gary Ennis (@nsdesign) October 12, 2020
With close to 15,000 impressions and nearly 100 likes, my fun #fatima ballet dancer Gif clearly resonated with a few people, equally appalled at the treatment of certain creative industries and the lack of financial support for some during COVID-19 lockdown.
Information related to the pandemic has been the most sought after content on the web in 2020, with many people and businesses looking for help and support. Staying on top of relevant breaking news and trending topics, and actually having an opinion on matters that impact you and your audience helps show a human touch, and builds empathy. Introduce a little humour, and watch the engagement rocket! This was a simple post with a big impact, containing just one comical GIF animation aligned to a big story.
Top Facebook Post of 2020:
Despite so much advice around social media (including much of my own) warning against trying to “sell”, there was one clear winner from our organic Facebook content in 2020 – the above post which is basically a sales post! Facebook continues to be a challenge for small businesses (including this one!) with average organic reach now falling to as low as 3% total likes (according to some research), so to achieve 200%+ reach with over 100 reactions, and 300 clicks back to our site – this one was an exception.
You CAN still sell products and services on social media. Of course you can! However what maybe makes this post just a little different (and maybe the reason we had the success we did with it) was the tone of voice and the way we shared our news. It wasn’t just announcing yet another product – it was announcing something that we were super excited about! Our new book was the culmination of 10 years work, specifically from myself and Colin, so adding the names gave a more personal feel to it. We weren’t actually announcing the book, we were building awareness of how proud we were to have completed it during lockdown, and building anticipation that it was coming soon. The link to the site wasn’t a “buy now” link (which can often scare people away), but a “watch this space” – allowing the audience to keep abreast of progress etc. That whole “we’re so excited” vibe continued with many later posts which actually drove people to Amazon for direct sales… If you can’t get excited about your own products how is anyone else meant to?… Even on sales posts, show some passion, and others will get excited with you!
Top Instagram Post of 2020:
View this post on Instagram
Taken before lockdown in February, my 2020 top Instagram post was a group selfie from a workshop in Orkney. Given that prior to COVID-19 my Instagram account was almost entirely comprised of similar “Gary at a workshop” selfies, I’ll admit to having struggled with an Instagram strategy this year given that images from a Zoom webinar don’t quite have the same impact (nor give me the same pleasure in taking!).
Instagram is a fun, people focused platform, so don’t forget to showcase yourself, your staff or your customers. The businesses I worked with in Orkney were truly grateful for my visit, and so I made sure to @tag them on the post, ensuring many of them commented and engaged with the post, and as with all my posts, this one made sure it had a ‘location’ and a good volume of relevant hashtags. It’s certainly not my best group selfie picture, but it’s the content and sentiment that people buy into, and a big smiley cheesy grin, not just from me but the others in the background go a long way in helping achieve engagement (and therefore reach) on the post.
Top LinkedIn Post of 2020:
My ‘grumpy old man’ rant on LinkedIn – with a reach of over 10,000, and the most engagement on any of my posts this year proves that LinkedIn can still be a platform for a little fun, especially when aligned to ‘stereotypical’ LinkedIn activity that others on the platform will have also experienced.
Still in my opinion the best platform for displaying some ‘thought leadership’ (I hate that phrase), sharing your views and opinions on things related to your work, industry, or expertise always helps raise your profile, and increases your visibility. From the comments received, my slightly over the top, grumpy old man style post resonated with many others, glad that I “called it out” and enjoying joining in with some “I agree” type banter. And that’s the trick – open up your content to some fun. Allow people to poke fun at you (as well as your point in question). Take it seriously, but don’t take yourself too seriously. My final remark of “nobody calls me Gareth apart from my Mum” left the door wide open for others to wind me up, and that’s what you’re looking for on LinkedIn. Dialogue.
2020 – that’s a wrap….
So there you have it – our own top social media posts from a year like no other. A year where the most said sentence was “sorry, you’re on mute” and when everyone learned the meaning of the word furlough. Learn from your own data – go and check the insights and analytics of all the platforms you’ve embraced this year, and learn from what worked. And if you still need help going into 2021 – there’s a great book we’d recommend… 😉
Happy new year when it comes everyone.