Sharing content is important because it gives your followers reassurance that you’re keeping up with industry trends and competitors, that you’re passionate about your work, and it establishes you as a thought leader. It’s also beneficial to the person whose content you shared because their content is now being viewed by a new audience and they get some engagement.
So if sharing content is beneficial to both parties involved, then why aren’t you getting the kind of engagement you want? You could be making a few costly mistakes.
Here are four possible reasons why your audience isn’t sharing your content:
- No one can find it.
Your content belongs somewhere in addition to your website, whether it’s on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest—it needs to be shared with the world. More important than that, it needs to be shared on networks where your potential customers are. Sharing a great piece on interview tips solely on Reddit isn’t going to get you the response you were hoping for. You need to be somewhere your customers (followers) and potential customers visit often. Content that is exclusively posted to your website will not be found by anyone who doesn’t already know you, which means you’re missing out on new customers—unless your SEO is off the charts. In that case, congratulations! Tell us how you did it!
- Misleading headlines (aka clickbait).
So you posted to the right social accounts and got some click-throughs, that’s great! But once people actually see your content, they’re going to be disappointed if your content doesn’t deliver what your headline promised, and more. Be honest with your followers; click-throughs are a meaningless metric if they’re not supported with shares or if your viewers are reading the first sentence and then leaving the page (it’s not good for your bounce rates either). Sure, you’ll get more click-throughs with a catchy social post and/or headline, but if it’s totally irrelevant, what good will that do for the company? Make your followers not trust you? Show your followers that your click-through statistic is more important than giving them content they would find useful? Those catchy headlines designed to grab attention should just be a doorway to reach even greater value. Integrity goes a long way, and if you fool your followers enough times, eventually they’ll unfollow/block you. Remember, these followers aren’t just numbers; they’re people—your current or potential customers!
- It’s too promotional.
Your social post is already coming from your account and the link is going to your website—you are getting plenty of exposure. Overdoing it with hashtags and mentions to the author, the editor, or your boss all make your post less relatable to people who don’t know your brand. If you’re going to offer up that much info, be sure it will offer some value to your followers. Otherwise, let your content naturally introduce your brand and keep things short and sweet; people scroll through timelines faster than you’d believe. A Facebook study found that people consume mobile content faster than on desktop: on average, 1.7 seconds on mobile and 2.5 seconds on desktop.
- The page is overwhelming and/or disorganized.
People are interested in your content, they’re reading what you have to say, and yet they’re still not sharing it. Perhaps it has something to do with that popup to sign up for your mailing list that we’ve seen three times, or the CTAs scattered throughout your post, or maybe it’s because the text is only sort of wrapping around the image. Take the time to make your blog and other content pieces look good; pages that are too busy or difficult to digest aren’t going to be shared.
Reaching your followers’ extended networks is important to growing your own. People who share your posts are essentially endorsing your company. They’re saying, “Here’s something I found to be helpful, and I think you will too.” Nobody is making them share your posts, they’re doing it because they earnestly think the people they know will benefit from it. For people to share your content, it has to be sharable; it has to speak to an audience that isn’t aware of your brand, be visually appealing, easy to digest, and easy to find.