How to Develop a Voice for Social Media

By Aaron Walker

If it’s not in the budget to hire a professional writer, there can be a lot of pressure on small businesses to create social media posts themselves. However, you can’t just start posting away and hope it all goes swimmingly. Even if you know that social media is right for you, your business speaks to markets that are active Twitter users and constantly liking things on Facebook.

Every piece of written content requires a unique voice. The social media environment dictates what kind of voice will be well received (or not). Development of a voice is sometimes included in website design pricing, but budget-watchers can also tap into this skill. To do so, first make sure you’re utilizing the best writer on your team.

Get Into Character
Of course, it’s critical to make sure there are no grammatical or spelling errors. If you have a strong writer available, make sure he or she is good enough to know when and how to break the rules. Social media demands that you write how your audience speaks. This means keeping sentences short and to the point.

You (probably) don’t speak in long, eloquent sentences and neither do your customers or followers. You may start sentences with ‘and.’ Think of how you talk to your closest friends and mimic that casual tone. You’re building a relationship with your social media friends and followers, not angling to win a writing contest.

Ask for Feedback
Before actually posting anything, get as much honest feedback as possible. There are many free writing communities online that can tell you what kind of personality you’re presenting. It’s easy to go too snarky, too professional, or even too bubbly the first time around. Depend on unbiased feedback for at least the first dozen posts.

Read your prior posts before constructing a new one. This can help you get back into the character you’re creating and write a seamless addition. All writers, even professional writers, can let their mood impact their work. If you’re all about pep, you need to convey that even when you’re not feeling it.

Set Your Ground Rules
Decide whether or not you will directly address your audience (using ‘you’) and which buzz words you’re going to utilize if any. It’s helpful to create a list of words you’d like to include and problem words to avoid. If you have a business name with a quirky motto, you might pepper that into your posts. Just make sure it doesn’t read as spam.

Everyone has favourite words even if they’re subconscious. You’ll pick up on your own while re-reading your old posts. If you find yourself repeating words, make a note of it and test out some alternatives. Developing a voice requires dedication and attention to detail when you’re posting.

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