Gone are the days where work was just a nine to five job. Gone are the days when a suit and tie was appropriate office attire. Gone are the days where one had to achieve work-life balance. This is the era of work-life integration, wearing jeans and t-shirts to office and a casual work culture.
A casual work set up or work culture sees comfort of the people above all else. It is believed that comfort will lead to loyalty, which will lead to an increase in efficiency and productivity. A casual work culture has no rules… this is the biggest myth of all. While there are no hard and fast rules like the previous corporate era, there still are a few lines that one should not cross in a casual work set up.
The very first thing that draws attention when a casual work set up is mentioned is DRESS CODE. Yes, you do not have to be dressed formally. Yes, dressing to comfort is the new norm. However, that does not mean one can come in track pants and sweat shirts. Even though the dress code says casual, everyone is expected to dress appropriately. There can always be Client meetings or office inspections and we should always be ready to accommodate them. Dressing well, even though casually, helps the individual to work better too as it boosts confidence and resets the mind to start work afresh.
In a casual work set up, the rules are very few and mostly mistaken to be unimportant. However, it is a place where people work together and rules are meant to be respected and adhered to, no matter what the company culture is.
A casual work place does not have Sir and Ma’am in their vocabulary. However, there definitely exists hierarchical positions that have to be respected and followed structurally. The relationship between superiors and juniors may be like that of friends but do not try to take advantage of that. It will result in a rift in the relationship and it will affect productivity and morale. So do not disregard established hierarchy and professional courtesy in a casual work set up.
The company will give you full liberty to use kitchen supplies, stationery items, even your laptops will have no usage restrictions. So use freely but carefully. Just because it is given to you doesn’t mean that you use and abuse. Be considerate when you make tea for yourself and others. Make sure you clean up after yourself once you’re done being the kitchen queen. Your laptop, albeit is company laptop, still care for it like it’s your own. Handle with care however butch it appears to be. Be mindful of the liberty given to you.
Companies nowadays focus on building healthy relationships at work. So, go ahead and build bonds with everyone. But remember, however close a bond you have built, they still are people . When it comes to work and maybe even otherwise, remember to be courteous and civil. Do not forget that you are at a professional workspace and behave accordingly. Maintaining hygiene in communal areas is very important. It is healthy even. Remember your manners, discipline, and basic etiquette and use it judiciously. This won’t bring harm to the bonds and relationships that you establish. It will only be enhanced.
You need to be most comfortable at the workspace to be able to be your best at work. However, at the same time you should always remember that others around you should be comfortable too. There are no big rules for conduct and harsh punishments for not adhering to code. Most of the things that are mentioned above are usually unsaid rules that are expected to be followed, as it is basic common sense. In this time of work life integration and a casual work culture, let us all strive to make everyone comfortable at work and excel together. The above points may also prove to be useful in building better relationships when you get back to working together in your workspace.
In March of 2020, our world changed overnight. Social distancing became the new cool and staying home became a way of saving lives. We were officially living amongst a Pandemic. As the world adapted to this new way of life, it became evident that everything we thought to be ‘normal’, had to be redefined.
With everything changing, we as content marketers, cannot deny the fact that our audience’s minds have drastically changed too. In these challenging times, your audience might have lost their jobs, they might have new routines and lifestyle changes and they might be experiencing fear, anxiety and whatnot.
Let’s look at some of the ways in which content marketers can adapt their content to connect with their audience in light of the present pandemic situation.
Offer your help and support
In this collective time of difficulty, little acts of kindness can go a long way. No matter what your business strategies are, find ways to help and support others. The world needs it right now more than ever before. A business that is there for people during tough times, will always be remembered. However, the aim should be to offer selfless support.
Along with Coronavirus, there is a spread of fear, anxiety and paranoia in the air. At difficult times like these, being empathetic towards your customers is the need of the hour. People will remember how you made them feel when the world was in chaos and uncertainty. Compassion, kindness and support should be your main focus at this time.
Be hopeful but realistic
Hope is the belief in the light at the end of a dark tunnel. It is a great mindset that no matter how bad things get, we can get through it. But there is a difference between hoping and invalidating the seriousness of the situation. Along with hope, we need to remember that we do not cross the line by minimizing the scale of the pandemic or its impact on human life. Do not forget that this is a big deal and once in a lifetime situation. However, we can get through this.
Be a trusted source of information
A huge part of content marketing is about answering questions. With the plethora of information available out there is it quite a task to differentiate between facts and rumours. This does not mean you need to have all the answers for everything going on in the world. But when it comes to your niche, keep your audience updated with genuine information based on the situation.
Modify your tone of voice
Evaluate the messages that you are sending across and modify it to the point of view of a world going through a pandemic. A world with growing unemployment rates, crashing economy and overall anxiety. Keep your tone as sensitive as possible. Brand awareness should be more on the limelight than making sales.
Focus on retaining your customer base
Loyal customers are those who have been with you for quite some and those whom you can count on. They should be your primary focus. It is these loyal customers who will keep your business afloat even during a pandemic. You have a better connection with them and they are generally more engaging than other customers. Moreover, they are said to spend more on average thus being more profitable to your company. Retaining them has to be your highest priority.
Managing and maintain your multiple Facebook pages was a difficult task with multiple actions and engagement from users across different business pages and different target groups. It will be very difficult to maintain and manage the posts across the platforms. Facebook introduced Creator studio which eventually led to an Instagram version of Creator studio allowing users to publish content on multiple platforms which helps to reduce time and can post the content in an organized and understand the effectiveness of the content which has been posted. This Blog talks about the basic features of how you can post, understand your audience in the creator studio.
So what is Creator Studio?
The creator studio helps users to manage, monetize by bringing in all the tools to effectively post content on our Facebook and Instagram Pages. It understands and gives information on new features and opportunities whenever they become available to them.
A user is eligible to access Creator studio only if they manage a page and it can be accessed through this link -https://business.facebook.com/creatorstudio The users who have access to Creator studio depends on the user’s page role and Instagram accounts linked to that page.
A basic overview of the homepage of the creator studio is shown above where you can see a series of posts by a business page along with minimal insights of recent posts and a composer where you can upload the post/video or go live from the account.
The content library shows an overview of all posts from the page you manage. You can view insights and take actions on posts such as editing if required, boosting the post or deleting them.
The main sections comprise of Content Library are
Posts: Wherein you see an overview of all posts which have been published in their respective pages.
Video you can cross-post: Videos which have been posted in multiple business pages.
Playlists: You manage playlists of posts or create new ones.
How do you post on Creator studio?
Option 1 – While creating a post.
– Select Create Post. – You can choose Create Post – To publish photos, creative (non-video content). Upload Video – Uploading a video-based post. Post Video Across Pages – Uploading a video and cross-post it in multiple pages Go Live – Start live broadcasting on the page. You can then choose the page you want to post to, compose your post and select Publish. or you can compose the post and click the arrow which is next to publish which helps to Schedule the post. You can select a specific date and time when you can publish the content.
Option 2: While uploading a video
Select Upload Video.
A user can choose to upload a single, multiple videos or post a video across multiple pages.
Select your video file >> Choose where you want to post the video >>Add your video details>> Select Publish
Video details include information such as the title, description, thumbnail, distribution settings, captions and 360 Director Tools.
You can also save the post as a draft and edit all the posts in the content library under the Drafts tab.
We can also create polls by creating the question, set a timeline for the poll and decide the time to display the results of the poll.
A user can see the results in case, they cast their vote or select a date and time to display the results or you can disable the results for the users.
The performance insights show the performance of the posts in the page of the video which has been posted and cross-posted across all Facebook pages.
In Creator Studio, Performance data is shown based on how your videos are shown to users.
1 Minutes Video Views: Wherein videos have been played for alteast a minute.
Minutes viewed: Are the total number of minutes your were played, include replaying your video.
3 second video views: Are the videos were played for at least three seconds.
Engagement: Refers to number of users who have commented on or shared your videos.
Net followers: Are the number of new followers minus the number of people who unfollowed your Pages during the defined period of time.
Loyal Followers: The key metric to know how users have been affected by the content published on the page can be determined by the loyalty of these users. The Loyalty insights helps us track the people you follow the page, number of returning viewers and gives an understanding of how long users watch the videos on the page.
Follower Count activity: Wherein we can see how many users have followed or unfollowed the page over a period of time.
Returning views: Wherein we can track the loyalty of the users week by week and look at returning viewers
How long will a user watch: Is it? 3-second view, 15-second views or 1-minute views These can be improved by showing a hint of the ending to engage the audience to watch the whole video, keep the attention of the audience throughout the video and grabbing the attention in first few seconds of the video.
Understanding your Facebook Audience
The performance of your posts can be improvised or your content can be reworked based on the audience who is interacting with your content on the page.
Engaged Viewers who have interacted, commented or shared to your posts on the page.
Viewers are the users who have watched at least one minute of the videos in a selected range.
New followers are people who have followed or unfollowed your page over a specified time range.
The Facebook audience shows us the top countries where your audience is located at, the top languages they communicate with, the common interests they share and the pages and video which are common amongst them.
The Facebook Creator studio also helps in maintain the messages of the users who interact with the page and have a data collection of free samples which the page admin can use to create content. The creator studio helps in maintain multiple posts in various accounts and also helps in tracking these activities through Creator studio. Facebook creator studio helps in understanding the audience who interact with the content and gives an idea of what content is utmost like by the audience of the given product.
Have you always wondered if there is a sure way of creating content for social media that people would wait to share?
Yes. There is.
Is there a way to stand out from the tsunami of content that people consume on a daily basis?
Yes. There is.
It all boils down to two simple philosophies that every social media content creator must keep in mind-
It’s not all about you
Think within the box
It’s not all about you
This step is inspired from the wonderful book ‘It’s not about you’ by co-authors Bob Burg and John David Mann. Read this book and you will discover the importance of serving the needs of others to find abundance in business as well as life.
In reference to the content you create, thinking about the person you are ideating/writing for helps you understand what they want to learn, read, laugh about or share. Doing this helps you stand out being genuine. Being genuine leads to being talked about.
It’s as simple as that.
Now you know it- Think less about what you want to create, what you think sounds cool, creative or ‘killer’ and think about the person consuming the things you are sharing.
Think within the box!
Now, wait a minute. I know you’ve been told to think out of box, since you could frame sentences in second grade. Thinking creatively is considered a product of thinking out of the regular framework of things. That may be true in some cases. Visualizing for social media is not one of them.
So what is this box and how do you think within said box?
The social media content box consists of 4 pillars, like every other box. But what each of these sides/pillars stand for is important. So listen up.
Know the product better than the client-
Is that even possible? Yes, yes, a thousand times yes!
Before you start working on your product/service learn everything you can about it. The good, the bad, the ugly. 0
First, start with the client’s brief of what they sell. This gives you a good insight of their perception on how they want to help people. This is important. If you don’t know why our client’s product or service exists, you might as well not get into the content creation bit.
Once you speak to your client and get a basic understanding of the product, the actual research begins.
Get online, talk to people, read news articles, reviews and every other piece of content you find. Read the little writing on the back of the product, if you have to. Do what it takes to know the product/service you are about to tell people about!
Know your audience
Imagine having a brilliant conversation or a date night with a wall. That’s right. If you don’t know who you are talking to on social media, you my friend, are speaking to a wall.
The second pillar of visualizing for social media is rather an important one.
Only when you know who you’re sharing valuable information with will you know if they are interested in your information. So step 1: create a persona of your buyer.
For one particular cooking oil brand that we worked with, we went out to spend endless hours at all the different places our client’s product was being sold. After making notes, talking to people who were picking up our product and shopkeepers selling them, we sat down and created a personality, adding every intricate detail we could fathom. From his language of preference to what newspaper he reads every day, we wrote it. That was the cornerstone of success for their social media page.
Once we learned about our customer, we wasted no time talking to the wrong people.
Today, thanks to Facebook/Instagram Analytics, behavioural recording tools and messenger to talk to people, understanding customer behavior has become a whole lot easy.
Research like your nosy aunty next door
That’s right. Just get in there. Spend hours learning about what’s happening in the industry. Learn about your competitors, what they do that makes them awesome, what they say that gets them responses and how they make their customers fall in love with them every day.
Once you get all this data, you now know ‘why’ your product exists for your customer.
Your product/service must have a purpose, it must help someone make their lives a little better, healthier, easier or happier. When you discover this purpose for your product, you know how to share its value to your customers.
So never forget, get to the ‘why’ first. The ‘how’ will follow suit.
Create content buckets
Just like you click on that ‘Skip Ad’ button when an ad starts to play at the beginning of your YouTube video, your customers will skip you out of their minds if you keep feeding them sales-y, repetitive content every single day.
So here is the fourth pillar of content visualization- Write down different ways you can talk to your customers, engage with them, provide them entertainment and value. These are called content buckets. Knowing who you’re talking to will help you create these ideas.
It can be a fun game, a throwback, behind-the-scenes, videos on how your product is made, reviews, recipes and so much more. Everything that can help tell your products’ story better and more effectively, make it a bucket.
And guess what…. You just visualized content for your client’s social media page!
Congratulations and good luck!
Let me know how it works out for you in the comments
If you are a writer, content creator,
designer or even a strategist, there is one thing that boils your blood boil
more than anything else. Hearing, “Think outside the box” the over – used, cliché
every single person in the creative field has heard. What’s
so special about the outside of the box then? Nothing. You read that right; there is nothing
extraordinary about what lies outside the box. The problem here isn’t thinking outside of the box, but accepting that
the box exists.
With freedom comes responsibility and with
creativity comes confusion. The “box” is
nothing but an imaginary boundary drawn around an idea to keep your thoughts
from running too wild. Why is this important you ask?
It is as simple as running a marathon. It is pointless to have a marathon where the only instruction is to run 10 km Without a starting point, an ending point and routes the participants need to take, isn’t it just like a morning run you could take – ‘could’ being the keyword here?
What is the box?
Being in a creative box is just that, knowing where to start and where you need to finally reach. The secret to coming up with “out of the box” ideas lies in knowing the details or better yet “Knowing the Box”.
The next question that pops into your head is, “How do I know what the box looks like?”
How to find the box?
This question can be answered with another 4 questions –
Here’s an example for creating a box while making a campaign strategy-
What is the problem?
Who has the problem?
What has already I have already done to solve the problem?
What are your limitations? (What can’t you do?)
Once you have the answers to these questions, you will find that you have now defined your box. This means, you have an understanding of how you can solve the problem, based on what has already been done and what options you have (based on your limitations).
Always create your own box, every piece of content you write, every design you make or any story you come up with, the questions that will help you create your box will vary.
Why is knowing the box important for creative people?
Here is a simple exercise, for you to try;
1. Teach something.
You have a problem, but are you confused on where to start? , what to teach? Stuck on how to do this?
Let’s move on then
2. Teach something to a child.
Now you have one piece of the puzzle, Your Target audience. You are now thinking of what you could teach a child and have multiple different things coming to mind confusing you a little.
Let’s go a step further, shall we?
3. Teach a child how to kind.
And the second piece of the puzzle makes things easier, doesn’t it? You now have the problem, Oh! The child doesn’t know how to be kind.
4. The child has been shown been told stories on kindness taught songs on kindness and shown examples on how to be kind, but still has difficulty being kind.
Now, you are aware of everything that has been done to teach the child how to be kind. You now know what hasn’t worked and have the scope to find what other methods you can use to teach the child how to be kind.
5. The parents of the child have given specific instructions that you cannot raise your voice if the child isn’t cooperating, bribing the child is a big no-no as well.
And to complete the puzzle you now know out of the options you had, what you can blindly discard, as it is boundary you have been asked not to cross.
So, how are you going to teach this child how to share?
With every step we took in the above exercise, you got a little more detail that helped you build the box. In the same way the more questions you ask, the more answers you get and easier your life becomes. The same applies to creating content, designing or building a campaign plan.
If you are ever stuck with any creative work you are doing, there is a manager or a client saying “Think outside the box” constantly and you are just at a loss for ideas. Stop everything you’re doing, take a break and tell your boss, “Give me a minute, let me go find my box.” Go find your box, sit inside it (figuratively, of course) and you will be surprised by what you come up with.