What We Learned About Creating “Free” Social Media Content
Trying to grow your social media marketing without hiring anyone or spending extra money? We’ve been there.
Lesson #1: We needed someone to consistently create and post content…and keep up with the evolution of social media platforms.
At Brenton Productions, our focus for over two decades has been producing quality TV programming and working with aftermarket brands to create integrations in those programs. At a certain point we realized that building a social media presence for our shows – and our company – was unavoidable.
And how hard could it be? We were already creating content; surely it would be easy to just rework it for social media, and the impressions would come pouring in!
But as a “lean and mean” team without a lot of room in the workload for taking on extra projects, we quickly realized that generating appropriate social media content was another animal entirely.
In addition to optimizing and re-imagining our existing media for various social platforms, we’d also need to start producing and curating original digital content.
On top of that, someone who already had a full-time job now also had to keep feeding content into the company’s Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter channels, monitor engagement around the clock, connect potential leads to our Account Managers, and try to keep up with ever-changing algorithms that kept us guessing about when, where, what, and how often to post in order to get the highest possible reach and engagement.
Lesson #2: Just existing on social media isn’t enough to justify the work it requires – we needed a strategy.
The results were less than encouraging – despite having recognizable brands (Two Guys Garage and Truck U had been on the air for well over a decade at this point), our social media reach wasn’t growing in a meaningful enough way to justify all the extra time, effort, and disruption to our day-to-day business.
We realized social media was something worth investing in. With the help of a dedicated social media management team, we were able to create a goals-driven strategy for creating and posting content to our channels, as well as handling the increased engagement and communication that comes with a more robust social media strategy.
The result is a growing presence on platforms like Facebook and Instagram that allows our audience to connect with our programs – and the brands in our shows – beyond the TV screen.
Lesson #3: TV and social media content are a powerful match!
What we’re benefiting from is a complementary media mix – as new episodes of Two Guys Garage and Truck U air on MotorTrendTV, we publish social media content that ties in with these episodes and the products integrated in them. The reach and awareness around our “brand” (the TV program) and the product brands experience a lift when a new episode airs; and as viewers of the show head to social media, they encounter our content related to the episode and products they just watched.
With our media mix, we’re reaching a wider audience than we would with just one form of media alone. Better still, the combination of a media presence on both TV and digital increases a viewer’s likelihood to remember the brand and take the next step toward becoming a regular viewer of our shows and customer of our sponsors.
Lesson #4: We have tools that can help many of our brand partners with creating their own social media content strategy.
As a TV production company, we do already have a head start – we can tap into our production capabilities to create and curate digital media (most significantly, video) that perfectly complements our TV content and feeds our social media channels. But for many brands, creating video content is a much heavier lift; not to mention the challenges of navigating your content distribution to ensure that it gets in front of the right audience.
That’s why we offer a turn-key solution to automotive aftermarket brands – we can take the demands of creating and distributing media off their plate, so that they can focus on their business.