List of important content types for social media

Social media has revolutionised the way we communicate. Never before has ordinary individuals found audiences in the millions. But when everyone’s talking, who do you think is listening? What types of contents are doing well in social media communications?

We are in living in special times. It is an era of, what experts in the field call, information overload. With millions of posts, tweets, videos and stories published every day, it becomes more and more difficult to stand out. If you want people to hear you, gain traction and followers, then you need to invest in creating interesting, quality content. Here’s a list of different content types and the platform you can use to build a following.

Video and Gif 

Motion pictures made a humble beginning almost a hundred years ago. In the 21st century, video becomes a crucial channel to impart information. So much so that by the year 2022, you will have close to 1 million videos being uploaded every second, across the world.

This makes your video content even more important. While making videos and gif, remember that you are doing this to tell a story. Videos keep people engaged only if they are entertaining, meaningful and relatable. Similarly, Gifs can be an important tool of communication and this truncated version of the video can be used to send out short video bursts and messages.

Youtube, TikTok, Vimeo are some of the more successful platforms for disbursing video content. Lately, shorter format videos that clock less than 30 seconds have gain immense traction. Short formats work well for Instagram, Facebook and twitter.

Infographics 

Video content is the most popular medium. According to a recent study, infogrpahics was the most shared content on social media. What exactly is an infographic?

Infographics have the best of both the worlds, written and visual content. Usually used as tips, hacks or advice content, infographics can provide information in a more interesting and visually appealing way than plain text.

Instagram and Facebook tweaked their interface by creating ‘carousels’ to incorporate infographics. Because you can pack limited information in a frame, carousel allows you to make several frames containing texts and pictures that can be then viewed one after the other.

Listicles

As the name suggests, these are list-based content that provide information in easy, digestible chunks. Say you have to list out different ways in which you can attract more business leads. OR effective ways to follow and achieve your new year’s resolution. What you can do is simply put down points, mention the steps, one below the other. Listicles help you organize ideas and present it in a step-wise manner without the need to delve in too much detail. 

This works great for platforms with limits on characters, such as twitter and Instagram. Such short format content are used extensively on Facebook and even tutorial videos on Youtube which present information in a list.

In the previous articles, we discussed types of content that can help gain traction and followers. In this article, we talk about some new content types that have recently become immensely popular. The reason we need to keep ourselves updated with new formats is that social media algorithms change all the time. The algorithms are designed to give weightage to newer content types that prolong engagement. That is why, when you create a content strategy, it should incorporate all the latest features to get more traction. Here are some of the most trending content formats.

Carousels

Carousels have been immensely popular on Instagram and Facebook. Before the launch of carousels, users were limited to posting one or two images accompanying a post. With the update in algorithms, Facebook figured out a way to extend the user’s attention per post.

Carousels are a series on images uploaded together on a single post. Currently, the limit is set to 10 images per post. What is the benefit of carousels?

As more and more influencers started gaining ground, Instagram began to think about promoting long-format content. Carousels helped influencers and industry experts to share key insights of their art. They could now share a ‘presentation’ of 10 slides explaining the nitty-gritty of their industry. Similarly, carousels facilitated story-telling, visual narrative, and stronger brand recall.

This also meant that users would spend 10X more time on a post leading to greater engagement.

Quizzes, Polls and Contests

Although not a strict algorithm format, quizzes, polls and contests became popular over the last few years. Instagram, Facebook and twitter added features where creators could upload multiple-choice questions, to which the users could respond.

Similarly, polls let to higher participation of audiences directly leading to higher engagement. Contests are great content formats, especially for businesses as they create immense value for the users, usually, in the form rewards and gratification. The above formats are also helpful in gaining customer insights, preferences, and engagement stats. 

Adding Effects, Filters and Themes

Every social media platform continuously upgrades its algorithm, features and services to get the best possible engagement. Usually, in the test run, a platform may release hundreds of different effects so that they can gauge how often people use them. In the past, Snapchat and Instagram filters disrupted the engagement tactics with many filters becoming viral instantly.

Since all platforms, except Twitter, rely on visually appealing posts and videos, the addition of effects, filters and themes created extreme excitement, with some features reaching the count in billions of posts. Adding all the features is extremely easy, along with the option of enhancing every image, gif and video. 

Every social media algorithm is designed to make users spend more time on the platform. Any feature which prolongs engagement is retained and continuously updated, keeping the users in mind. To build a following and keep audiences interested, it is essential to keep oneself updated with the emergence of the latest features and content format.

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