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Micro content – what is it and how to leverage it

Content for social media success

lego-bricksMicro content, I keep hearing this term and thought it’d be useful to explore what it means; why content marketing is evolving and diversifying and what the practical applications of micro content are for marketing.

Essentially, micro content is as it sounds - short form content. Typically low cost, high value content appropriate to social channels. To all intents and purpose it’s social media content.

It’s not that detailed articles or long form, rich content are any less important, it’s simply a case of being relevant to the social media platform in question, and accessible to an ever detached consumer who’s on the move with a low attention span for your brand.

Social and mobile are leading the change

As the world shifts towards mobile devices, and accessing information via social networks on a mobile, micro content becomes a more important and practical form of communicating with customers and prospects. Reading large amounts of text on the mobile just isn’t practical. This is the consumer’s reality now, the rise of short messages through Twitter and Whatsapp, as well visual messages such through Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat. Social media, and so content marketing, has to move with consumer behaviour. The sooner you integrate this into your content marketing strategy, the better, as there are predictions that between 60–80% of your web traffic will come via mobile platforms in only a few years from now

6 ideas for implementing a micro content strategy

This post isn’t about what social platforms are best for you, here we’re interested in how to integrate micro content into a wider content marketing strategy, the platforms just change the type of  content (text, images, video), and how it's shared, maybe even the under-lying nature, no matter - the principal remains the same.

The principal is around what you can do in 15 mins a day to keep in front of your prospects or customers, to be a part of their daily conversation. The commercial output is creating inbound links from social channels and driving traffic, leads and (we hope) business.

  1. Targeted: As ever, who you’re targeting remains the most important question. Social media requires that you make it about “me”, not your shiny new sales message. So knowing who I am (a vague sense of demographics is not good enough) is critical, think about beliefs, behaviours and motivations. These are key to tee up number 2.
  2. Authentically helpful: Whoever your audience is, think ‘serve’… what can you do for them? Serving might be educating, entertaining in some way, inspiring or connecting. The point here is huge but simple. It’s about them.
  3. Focus on useful, concise information: Using your target audience wants and/or needs make your micro content short enough and often enough to become a part of your audience’s daily routine. Think, tips, updates, quotes, news headlines, horoscopes and sports scores. Less is more. And - make sure that the key phrases relevant to your natural search programme are designed into text used in micro content, especially link text.
  4. Think repeatable-social-mobile: How can you build a schedule that enables the delivery of bite-size, snackable information, content that’s fun, easy and cheap to run, that works on the small screen for your moving, information hungry audience. Develop themes of content to open up areas for brain-storming the detail. The more consistent, the lower the cost and ease of repetition.
  5. Curate: Often the best micro content is your short form review or share of somebody else’s stuff that might be useful to your audience, and it doesn’t get more social than that. That enables your appeal and reach to grow naturally through a trusted network.
  6. Call to action: Social media is business. What are you drawing your prospects to do? It’s not that every tweet, vine, Facebook status update or Instagram requires a link back or offer, it really doesn’t and mustn’t, but once in a while deliver the ask. And always make your profile useful to translate who your are and what you do so that the inquisitive can easily learn more and visit your website.

Social media, or micro content, marketing is all about designing ways to keep your brand in front of your prospects and customers, by building trust credibility.

By Danyl Bosomworth

Dan helped to co-found Smart Insights in 2010 and acted as Marketing Director until leaving in November 2014 to focus on his other role as Managing Director of First 10 Digital. His experience spans brand development and digital marketing, with roles both agency and client side for nearly 20 years. Creative, passionate and focussed, his goal is on commercial success whilst increasing brand equity through effective integration and remembering that marketing is about real people. Dan's interests and recent experience span digital strategy, social media, and eCRM. You can learn more about Dan's background here Linked In.

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