Social media posts might be short and sweet, but you need to go beyond the basic promotional message to standout in the jungle of posts, tweets and pins.

When it comes to being creative and standing out, wedding photographers JoAnne and Jason Marino have the market cornered. One look at their marketing photo for their business, Imagine Photography, proves it.

This dynamic husband and wife duo are known for their unique brand of photography and it spills into their social media marketing.

We could all use a little creative inspiration when it comes to social media. To go beyond the “Look, we’re having a sale!” post, we asked the duo, who run a small business just like you, to give us four social media posts that go beyond generic promotional messages.

1. Behind-the-scenes pictures

Don’t just talk about what your company sells on social media, show its personality. Take a behind-the-scenes photo once in a while and share it. Facebook photos generate 53% more likes than the average post, so keep a camera handy to snap a quick photo of the day’s events.

Whether that’s a shot of you packing boxes, donating to a local charity or hanging out with your clients like the Marino’s in the post below, it’s great to show the “human” side of your business.

“We do this as it not only gives clients a look at us behind the scenes, but it also shows that we aren’t just a company or a name, but fun people just like them,” says JoAnne and Jason Marino.

2. Knowledge

As a small business, you are an expert in your field. You have amassed a certain amount of knowledge and skill to get you where you are today. Why not share some of that knowledge with your social media audience?

Photographers can post a picture and explain how they took it, the lenses they used, the speed aperture, and filters.  Online retailers can share a blog post about the little-known demands of an internet-based business and a non-profit can offer deductible donation tips.

The Marino’s say these posts solidify your authority in the field to both clients and colleagues.

3. Real moments

Social media gives you the opportunity to share what the Marino’s refer to as “real moments.” By sharing a picture, quote or video that connects on an emotional level rather than a sales level, you’ll attract more viewers.

On the Imagine Photography Pinterest page, for example, this shot of a couple isn’t a sales push for the company, it’s a moment that others can relate to.

Try to share similar posts that evoke an emotion. For instance, non-profits can share photos or an article or about a family it recently helped, an auto mechanic can share a picture of himself covered in grease, working late on a customer’s car. Any image, video or story that your audience can make a connection with will work.

4. Social media love

When you team up with another business or organization, be sure to talk about the partnership or project on social media and tag each other.

When the Marino’s shoot at various wedding venues, they always include the business in their posts. Take a look at the example below.

Let’s say your business is working with a new website designer, mention the new plans on your social sites and give the designer a shout out. When your non-profit gets a big donation from a local business, head to your social channels to share the news and be sure to include the business in a thank you post.

By sharing these posts, you not only boost your exposure, but you also build a rapport with other brands. It’s a win-win.

By using these four ideas you can help increase your brand awareness, website traffic and sales. That’s what these posts do for the Marinos.

“Social media gives us an outlet to push content to a wide range of people that wouldn’t necessarily see our website. The shares, comments, likes, pins, repins and retweets we get on social media really draw people to our site to dig deeper into who we are which leads to more clients.”

Aside from promotional posts, what kinds of social posts work best for your business? Share in the comment section below.

© 2015 – 2018, Contributing Author. All rights reserved.

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