The Social Media Posting Rule Explained in 5 Steps

By Sarah Stahl, Content Marketing Strategist

Yes, it’s a fact that knowing how, when, where, what, and why to post on your social media accounts are a bit overwhelming, especially when you don’t have a lot of time to play with. But, It’s just because you may not have learned this very basic trick.

It’s the 70% +20% + 10% rule. It’s not something I came up with myself (totally wish I did, it’s mad genius) But I’ve only seen the rule explained in theory and not in practical steps.

So, I’d like to dive a bit deeper and spell out how these percentages all work together to build your web Marketing Strategy.

Starting with this info-graph cleverly put together by Crystal Vilkaitis, Owner of CrystalMedia, who has visually defined the 70/20/10 Facebook Posting Rule as seen below.

I like to apply this rule across all the platforms I choose to use and not necessarily just on Facebook. The following steps will help you understand the hustle that goes into creating a posting calendar that doesn’t stink, using the stats above.

Step 1. Understanding how the rule breaks down.

I like to step back and observe this rule over the course of a week. So, In 1 week I typically post 14 times.

70% = 9.8 posts

20% = 2.8 posts

10% = 1.4 posts

Yes, I just got that detailed. But we can do some simple rounding so you don’t pull your hair out (if you still have any left).

If you are posting 14 times a week;

10 Posts should be Branding. Original Content in a Native language to the platform you are posting to. Yes, your delivery should change from platform to platform. You shouldn’t post the same exact message across all platforms. This is why I’m not a particularly big fan of HootSuite and their mass posting abilities.

3 Posts should be shares. Not just any shares, but shares from others in your related field that also have AMAZING content.  Don’t forget to alert them and hopefully they will join in on the conversation and share some love in return.

And then there was 1. Yes, 1 post remains for all 7 days to conduct a shameless promotion. So, make it good! Wondering how? Continue reading, I go into this in more detail below.

Step 2. Branding.

70% of this rule is dedicated to brand awareness. This should be original content that talks directly to your specific clientele in your organic voice. This is the fun part! I’m encouraging you to be yourself here. Live it, own it and watch your followers fall in love with it! Stop trying to mimic another successful brand in your industry. Be your own brand. A lot of extra time will open up when you spend time doing what comes naturally to you, rather than learning how to be something else and then struggling to replicate it.

This should all be new content. Something that has never been done, and something you can’t find anywhere else on the internet.  I understand, you will get inspired by others to create your own content so some things may be similar to others. But, this is not where you share links to buy or do any kind of promotion. This is where you build the personality behind your brand.

For heavens sake, just create something! You created your business, don’t stop there. You have already proven you’ve got the ability, and ambition to step out of the mold so don’t stop exploring that path. No need to fear the consequences of putting it all out there.

Although, I totally get that It’s tough to find a balance for the voice of your brand, but testing makes that possible. This video by Marie Forleo will help you determine how to put your real Personality in your brand.

Now that you have decided which voice works best for the customers you are trying to reach, play with it,  track it and analyze the results. Managing your social media presence means always tweaking, adjusting and changing to what works and doesn’t over time.

Example of a Branding Post, in Action: Here I used a trending topic on Twitter and built my message around that. Then I broke down how ROI directly affects your online community, with a visual. I included my logo, and used the ironic tones that are native to the Twitter platform. It has been one of my best performing branding posts so far.

Step 3. Sharing.

This is where you share the love. However, 20% of your shares should stay on point. Yes, you can get fun creative and even a bit crazy here if that’s what your audience likes. But the same message should be found throughout each of your choices. If you are a beauty company, even your shares should be about beauty.

To that same beauty company, don’t share a trending animal video just because it’s currently viral and you want the views. Can I say it? I think I will…Tacky! You are busting your butt to keep a sweet aroma about your brand, don’t make it easy for your clients to choke on a sour grape.

Example of a Sharing Post in Action: Here I used a video from someone in my field I highly admire. I didn’t just post a link and say “check this out”. I used my own sarcastic voice to get followers excited about learning some pretty elite SEO tips. I used my favorite tool, Snip.ly to bring folks back to my site after they watched the video to check out how their marketing stacks up with an offer to take my FREE Web Analysis. This has been my best performing share, so far.

Step 4. the Sales Pitch.

10% of your shares should be Shameless “Sales” Promotions. But don’t think this is a green light to go off message from your other 13 posts. Your promo should feel, sound and taste just as seamless as the rest of the weeks posts. It should not cause skid marks on the road requiring clients to slam on their breaks. If you’ve been successful with your branding and sharing your sales pitch should not interrupt the rest of your message.

I’m not going to reinvent the wheel here. Because   Gary Vaynerchuk explains the art of how to land your sales pitch perfectly every time; in his book Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook.

As a teaser, in this video Gary V. Explains how and why your right hooks should feel like jabs. You don’t have to be always selling if your 70%’s ROCK!

Example of a Sales Post in Action: Here I’m still giving people information. I quote some pretty stats that were found in the Social Media Examiner’s 2014 Marketing report to evoke a sense of urgency. I made it fun (because I’m fun) and easy to click to get to my FREE Web Analysis. This has been my best performing sales pitch, so far.

Step 5. Closing the Sale.

This is where my opinion will probably differ with quite a few folks. But, I’m ok with that. I value clients and I also value people who can’t afford to be clients but love gleaning from my insight. In fact they are just as important to me as a paying customer. Why, because they help build my reputation and my reputation is very valuable to me.

You should always be closing! Duh, right? But the close doesn’t always have to be in exchange for someone else’s funds. To me, closing a sale has a variety of outcomes. One of my favorites, I use quite frequently by giving away my FREE Web Assessment. This is a close to me because it completes a conversion track that I monitor very closely.

That is valuable for many reasons.

1. I truly want to help folks. I know how expensive it can be to start and operate a small business and I don’t want to hoard my knowledge. I want those who can’t afford me to use my strategies and be encouraged in their own success. In fact I love to hear success stories. So, always feel free to share those with me!

2. Tracking. I track every page on my website. I can see the path people take and I can make decisions based on where they stopped on my conversion track. Being able to track why people follow through or what hangs folks up is seriously gold! That is valued equal to sales in my opinion.

3. Sales. You can’t be in business without this so I do get it’s part of the pie.  But it should be equal and not top heavy. Don’t be scared giving away something for free will cripple you. Just understand how much you can give away without causing any damage.

It’s called the Bee-sting effect and it takes some guts, but here Bobby Kim, VP @PacPrinting explains it quite well.

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