What to Post on Each Social Media Platform: The Complete Guide to Optimizing Your Social Content
This story originally appeared on Buffer
Not all content needs to be shared everywhere. And not all content is suitable for every social media platforms.
It’s all right to post entirely different things on different platforms. In fact, it might even help you to boost your engagement.
For example, if you take a look at our Twitter and Instagram accounts, you’ll notice that we post entirely different things on each platform.
But how do you decide what to post on each social media platform?
To help you with your social media marketing strategy, we would love to share some suggestions and examples that have worked for us and others.
By the end of this post, we hope you’ll know exactly what to share on each of your social media profiles.
What to post on each social media platform
Every platform has its own audience. And each audience has their own expectations for the things they want to see on the platform – that can affect how well your social media posts perform.
Since every platform is different, this guide will cover each of the following six major social media platforms separately.
Here are the general guidelines:
Facebook: Videos and curated content
Instagram: High-res photos, quotes, Stories
Twitter: News, blog posts, and GIFs
LinkedIn: Jobs, company news, and professional content
Pinterest: Infographics and step-by-step photo guides
Google+: Blog posts that you want to rank on Google
Once you’ve decided on what to post to each social media platform, we would love to help you craft the perfect post for every social platform in one seamless experience.
What to post on Facebook
Videos and live videos
Our goal on Facebook has been to build our brand and engage our fans.
Recently, videos and live videos have proven to be the best types of content for our Facebook Page.
Our video posts generated the highest average reach among all post types. The average engagement on our video posts is almost on par with that on our photo posts, which have the highest average engagement.
Buzzsumo analyzed 68 million Facebook posts and found that a similar trend: videos have higher average engagement than images and links.
We focus on creating educational videos for our Facebook Page:
- How-to guides: These are videos where Brian Peters, our Digital Marketing Strategist, share social media tips and tricks.
- Blog post summaries: For these videos, we summarize the key ideas from our blog posts and turn them into short video clips using Animoto.
Here’s an example of a Facebook video that has done well for us recently:
Blog posts and curated content
After videos, blog posts and curated content are the next types of posts that do well on our Facebook Page.
Apart from sharing our blog posts, we also curate high-quality (proven) content from third-party Pages and sites. This Facebook posting strategy has helped us grow our Facebook Page’s reach, engagement, and Likes over the past year.
Our Page Likes grew by over 40 percent over the past year.
We have found posts that are both educational and entertaining do the best for us on Facebook. Here’s a recent example:
What to post on Instagram
Instagram has become a place where people post only the best photos (and videos) on their profile.
After interviewing and surveying 11,000 13 to 24-year-olds around the world, Facebook recommends marketers to “blend in to stand out”:
Here are a few types of high-quality photos you can post to Instagram:
Product photos: If you sell physical products such as fashion or food, you can post high-resolution photos of your product in various settings. Califia Farms (@califiafarms) does a great job with this. (See more examples here from the best brands on Instagram, according to HubSpot.)
Behind-the-scenes: Another popular type of Instagram photos from brands are behind-the-scenes photos. These could be photos of people in the company, events, or the making of a product (e.g. how a dish is prepared).
User-generated content: If you can’t get suitable product photos or enough behind-the-scenes photos like us (a remote company that creates software), you could post user-generated content. User-generated content grew our Instagram account by over 500 percent in a year.
Motivational and inspirational quotes are one of the most popular content types on Instagram (with more than 42 million posts tagged with #quotes at the time of writing).
A brand that does a great job (creatively) integrating quote posts into their Instagram profile is WeWork (@wework).
If you are unable to get such photos with quotes, you can also create graphics with quotes using free design tools like Canva and Adobe Spark.
For example, Kelli Pease (@happster) grew her side project, The Happster, a blog about happiness, to nearly a 100,000 followers, with most graphics with quotes.
While it’s important to have a consistent theme for your Instagram profile, you can be a little flexible with your Instagram Stories. That’s because they would disappear in 24 hours.
There are many different ways of using Instagram Stories for your marketing. Here are a few examples:
- Share how-to tutorials
- Promote a blog post
- Share a list
- Announce limited time offers and promotions
- Offer giveaways and discount coupons
- Share data, research, and statistics
- Share quotes and inspiration
- Introduce an Instagram takeover guest
- Share announcements, news, and updates
What to post on Twitter
The most common reason why people use Twitter is to keep up with news, according to a survey of over 3,000 people by the American Press Institute.
40 percent use Twitter to find out about breaking news; 39 percent to keep up with news in general.
This makes it a great platform for sharing news relevant to your followers — industry news, company news, product news.
Here’s an example of industry news we share on Twitter:
Blog posts and curated content
Like Facebook, Twitter is a great place to share your blog posts and curate high-quality, relevant content.
Because people and brands tend to tweet many times a day, it’s more suitable to share several blog posts or curated content per day on Twitter than other platforms like Facebook.
When we share our blog posts, we like to add one of the following multimedia attachments to keep the tweet interesting to our followers:
- Link (with the link preview)
- Photo or infographic
Here’s an example:
Twitter is one of the few social media platforms where GIFs first became popular. And GIFs are still very popular on Twitter today.
If you have created GIFs for your blog posts or product launch, Twitter is the best platform for sharing them.
For example, when MailChimp launched a new feature in their mobile app, they made a GIF to show how easy it is to create email campaigns on the go.
What to post on LinkedIn
Jobs and career information
With LinkedIn being a professional networking platform, the most suitable content for LinkedIn is job listings and career information.
Your LinkedIn Company Page is a great channel for potential hires to learn more about your company. For example, Google uses their LinkedIn Company Page to showcase several things:
- their company culture
- their employees’ experiences working at Google
- their employees’ achievements
- their open job positions
It’s common to see posts like the one below on their Company Page.
Besides posting about job opportunities and career information, you can also share company news and milestones on your LinkedIn company page.
Here’s an example from Facebook:
Sometimes, you might not have enough content about career or that many company news to share regularly on your Company Page. (We face this often.)
Another type of content you can share on LinkedIn is content that is relevant to the professionals in your target audience. This includes training webinars, whitepaper, and industry studies.
Here’s an example from HubSpot, who’s hosting a four-day series on using Facebook to grow a business:
What to post on Pinterest
Like Instagram, Pinterest is a very visual social media platform. So images are the best thing to post on Pinterest.
But unlike Instagram, images on Pinterest are mostly vertical. Images are displayed on the Pinterest feed at a width of 236 pixels and a maximum height of 800 pixels.
According to Pinterest, the best aspect ratio for Pinterest images is 2:3, with a minimum width of 600 pixels, such as 600 pixels wide by 900 pixels tall or 800 pixels wide by 1,200 pixels tall.
Step-by-step photo guides
The most popular topics on Pinterest includes DIY and craft, home decor, food and drinks, and design.
Among these topics, vertical images with step-by-step photo instructions on how to make something perform really well.
Here’s one of the most popular pins for “napkin folding” (with over 400,000 re-pins):
What to post on Google+
While Google+ is often overshadowed by other social media platforms, there are many reasons to consider Google+ in your marketing strategy.
What I personally like most is its SEO benefits.
We learned that content posted onto Google+ gets indexed immediately and shows up in search results soon after!
For example, when Patrick Antinozzi of Rapid Web Launch published his blog post on Pokemon Go, he shared it on Google+. Within an hour, his Google+ post appeared on the first page of Google search results for “pokemon go”.
While we don’t see as much engagement on Google+ as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, I believe it’s still worthwhile sharing our blog posts on Google+ to help it get indexed by Google immediately.