Content Creation Checklist for Retailers

“Content is King,” It’s a phrase you’ve most likely heard before. But it was actually coined by Bill Gates in a 1996 essay published on Microsoft.com. In his blog he wrote “Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet, just as it was in broadcasting.” So two decades later, is content still king? The answer is a resounding yes, with an asterisk. There’s more content being uploaded than ever before. Hundreds of thousands of gigabytes of white noise. From Facebook posts to YouTube videos, you’ll need to put in a bit of extra effort to make sure your content breaks through the white noise and is seen by the right audience. 

Here is a content creation checklist for retailers that runs you through the entire process, curated by the social media experts at Thumbstopper. 

Step 1 is Pre-Production, AKA brainstorming. Creating content for the sake of checking a box won’t serve your or your business well. For instance, before you dedicate time to creating a product demo video, do some research on which products are currently getting interest well online. (Cheeky) Hint: we actually have a whole video about researching your competition that you can check out in the description below. There are load of easy-to-use tools online that rank common brand keywords, including the free & commonly utilized Google Trends. 

In a few clicks, you can enter a few different brand or product names and see how they compare to ensure you’re focusing your effort on the right topics and positioned well for the highest possible ROI. 

Now, it’s time to either produce or find high quality media to serve as the meat of your content. We have dozens of videos and services dedicated to helping retailers find high quality digital media, so let’s focus on producing content specifically.  

Your goal is to create engaging pictures & videos of the products you previously identified as the best candidates to post about online. Smart phone cameras have come a long way and can genuinely substitute for real cameras if used by the right person, but if you can get your hands on a DSLR camera or something similar, your content will start out of the gate looking better than the general public, who is most likely using their iPhone. 

Regardless of your equipment, make content that you’re strategically enabled to make as a retailer. Chiropractors are popular online because they have the advice and knowledge people need. Social media influencers are popular online because they get the newest video games and gadgets from brands for free. 

Not everyone has access to a business full of experts & popular brand products. Make content that you and others in your field legitimately want to be looking at. There will be others just like you, trust me! 

Now that you have a library of videos/pictures that already stands out due to the unique assets your business has, you need to optimize the content for a multitude of platforms. Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, all these platforms have ‘best practices’ and ‘guidelines’ for you to follow to make sure your content stands out. 

Here are a few aspect ratios on screen for you to reference when optimizing your content. 

It’s tedious, cropping and resizes pictures to work for each platform, but the end result is absolutely worth it. You will notice immediately how far these minor tweaks go to making your content stand out even further. At this point, we’re really just finetuning every detail of the content to make sure it is positioned to succeed. 

Lastly, it’s time to make variations to connect with specific locations and audiences. Going the extra distance to connect the brands you carry & your retail shop to someone’s personal community goes a long way. If you’re producing organic content, then customizing the image, adding a few hashtags, and “checking in” at a specific city can go a long way. Since you’re doing it by hand, you can even reference sporting events, current local happenings, etc. 

If you’re interested in starting a paid ad campaign, you can quite literally control every detail of the end person who ends up seeing your content. Down to their location, gender, age, household income, interests, and hobbies. This last detail, tailoring your content to a specific demographic, might just be the most important part, whether it’s done by hand or automatically by a third party tool. 

Now that you’ve identified products that are performing well on social media and have produced high quality content that is both tailored to specific social media platforms & sub-demographics. You are ready to go live! If you want to make sure you’re posting at the absolute best time, than watch our “Best Time to Post on Social Media” video where we break down the best times to post, by platform. Regardless, you can rest assured that the content you’re posting features popular brand names and was optimized every step of the way to find its intended audience. 

… 

This video is brought to you by Thumbstopper. Remember before when we mentioned that third party tools can help automate the process of tailoring social media posts to specific locations and audiences? That is where Thumbstopper comes in. To learn more about how we can do the heavy lifting for you, visit Thumbstopper.com. 

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