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August 14, 2023

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5 Effective Types of Social Media Content With Examples

From entertaining videos to insightful posts that broaden our horizons - effective content has the ability to engage and inspire customers to take a desired action. We will look at the most effective types of social media content!



5 Effective Types of Social Media Content With Examples

Scroll, like, share, repeat - we live in a digital era where social media has become an inseparable part of our lives. And at the heart of this vibrant online world lies the game-changing power of captivating social media content. From entertaining videos that tickle our funny bones to insightful posts that broaden our horizons, effective content has the ability to engage, educate, and inspire customers to take a desired action. So, in this article, we will look at the most effective types of social media content along with examples.

Let's get started. 

1. Entertaining Content

Entertaining content refers to creative, enjoyable, and engaging material that captivates and delights audiences. It is designed to evoke emotions, spark curiosity, inspire laughter, or create a sense of amusement. Entertainment is subjective, but in the context of social media, entertaining content often includes humor, storytelling, compelling visuals, or interactive elements.

Entertaining content plays a crucial role in social media strategies for several reasons:

  • Audience engagement: Entertaining content grabs attention, encourages likes, comments, shares, and other forms of engagement. It fosters a connection with your audience and encourages them to interact with your brand.
  • Viral potential: Entertaining content has a higher likelihood of going viral and spreading rapidly across platforms. People love sharing entertaining content with their friends, family, and followers. And with its shareability factor, entertaining content can significantly increase your brand's visibility and reach.
  • Brand personality: By sharing entertaining content, you can showcase your brand's personality and humanize your business. This helps establish an emotional bond with your audience, leading to stronger brand loyalty.

Remember, entertaining content should align with your brand's values, target audience, and overall social media strategy. It should be authentic, relatable, and unique to stand out amidst the sea of content on social platforms.

Examples of entertaining social media content

Here are a few examples of entertaining content that can captivate and engage your audience on social media:

Memes and GIFs: Share funny and relatable memes or animated GIFs that resonate with your target audience. They can quickly grab attention, spark humor, and encourage sharing. 

Funny videos: Create or curate funny videos that align with your brand identity. It could be humorous skits, funny moments, or even playful animations that bring a smile to your viewers' faces.

💡 Short-form videos are perfect for funny videos. Why? The average social media user has a much shorter attention span when compared to a few years ago. So, leveraging short-form videos is the best way to connect and engage your audience. In fact, 85% of marketers say that short-form videos are the most effective content format on social media. 

Quizzes and polls: Create interactive quizzes or polls to engage your audience and encourage participation. These can be light-hearted or related to your industry, allowing people to have fun while interacting with your content.

Storytelling with visuals: Videos and images have been proven to be more engaging than text posts. On LinkedIn, posts with images receive 98% more comments on average, and tweets with visual content are three more times likely to get more engagement. So use captivating visuals to tell a story that entertains and resonates with your audience. 

Bloopers and outtakes: Compile bloopers or behind-the-scenes outtakes from your content creation process. Showcasing funny mistakes, unexpected moments, or spontaneous laughter can humanize your brand and entertain your viewers.

By incorporating entertaining content into your social media strategy, you can evoke laughter, create a positive brand image, and establish a strong connection with your audience. 

2. Educational Content

Educational social media content is a remarkable tool for establishing thought leadership. It refers to posts, videos, or articles that aim to educate and inform an audience. It can cover a wide range of topics: from tutorials to how-to guides.

Now, let's talk about the benefits of sharing educational content to establish thought leadership.

  • Establishing expertise: When you consistently share valuable educational content, people start to see you as an authority in your field. They'll recognize your knowledge and expertise, which builds trust and credibility.
  • Building a community: Through educational content, you can connect with like-minded individuals who have an interest in what you're sharing. This helps build a community around your expertise, fostering meaningful conversations and connections.
  • Amplifying reach: Social media has the power of amplification. When your educational content resonates with people, they're more likely to share it with their own networks. This ripple effect allows you to reach a wider audience, increasing your influence and thought leadership.
  • Staying relevant: By continuously providing educational content, you demonstrate that you stay up-to-date with the latest trends, research, and insights in your field. This positions you as someone who is knowledgeable and aware of industry developments.

Examples of educational social media content

Here are a few examples of educational social media content that you can create to engage and educate your audience:

Tips and tricks: Share bite-sized tips and tricks related to your area of expertise. For example, if you're a chef, you can create short videos showcasing cooking hacks or quick recipe tips.

Tutorials and how-to guides: Create step-by-step tutorials or guides that help your audience learn a new skill or accomplish a specific task. This could be anything from DIY projects to makeup tutorials or coding walkthroughs.

Infographics and visuals: Present information in a visually appealing way using infographics or engaging images. Condense complex concepts or data into easily digestible visuals to help your audience understand and remember key points. 

Industry news and updates: Share the latest news, trends, and updates in your field. This keeps your audience informed and positions you as someone who stays on top of industry happenings.

Expert Interviews: Conduct interviews with other industry experts, thought leaders, or professionals in your field. Ask thought-provoking questions and share the insights and wisdom gained from these discussions with your audience.

Explainer videos: Create videos that explain complex concepts or answer common questions. Use storytelling techniques and visual aids to make it engaging and easy to understand. 

💡Here, you can share longer videos. Especially on platforms like YouTube and Facebook. In fact, 93% of viewers on YouTube say they use it mainly for educational purposes, and the average user spends at least 29 minutes and 37 seconds per visit

Live Q&A sessions: Host live Q&A sessions where your audience can ask questions and get real-time answers. This interactive format encourages engagement and allows you to address specific inquiries from your audience.

Your viewers also want to see more live videos from your brand. A survey by Livestream and New York Magazine reported that 80 percent of people will prefer to watch a live video from a brand than read a blog.

The thing key is to provide valuable information, spark curiosity and make it engaging for your audience. Mix and match these content ideas based on your expertise and the preferences of your target audience. 

3. Authentic Behind-the-Scenes Content:

Sharing behind-the-scenes content can humanize your brand and foster a genuine connection with your audience.

It gives your audience a glimpse into the inner workings of your brand. By showing the real people and processes behind what you do, you create transparency and build trust with your audience. They get to see the human side of your brand, which can be incredibly powerful. 

Whether it's a team brainstorming session, a sneak peek at product development, or even the fun and light-hearted moments in your workspace, you allow your audience to relate to you on a more personal level. It humanizes your brand and makes it easier for people to connect with you emotionally.

Behind-the-scenes content also provides an opportunity to tell compelling stories. You can share the challenges, triumphs, and lessons learned along the way. Storytelling is a powerful way to engage your audience, captivate their attention, and leave a lasting impression.

Another great time to share behind-the-scenes content is before product launches, events, or initiatives. It allows you to build anticipation and excitement by giving your audience a sneak peek into what’s coming. 

Remember, behind-the-scenes content doesn't have to be overly produced or perfect. The idea is to show the real and unfiltered side of your brand, while still maintaining professionalism. It's about being authentic and allowing your audience to have a deeper connection with you.

4. User-Generated Content (UGC)

User-generated content refers to any content created and shared by your audience or customers. It plays a significant role in building trust and fostering a sense of community, and here's why:

  • Authenticity and social proof: When your audience sees content created by real people, it adds an extra layer of authenticity and social proof. UGC shows that your brand and products have resonated with others and provide reassurance to new potential customers. People tend to trust recommendations and experiences shared by their peers.
  • Engaging and interactive: UGC encourages active participation, engagement, and dialogue from your audience. According to Comscore, brand engagement increases by 28% when you combine branded content with UGC. By showcasing and sharing UGC, you also invite others to contribute, creating a sense of community and belonging. It strengthens the bond between your brand and its customers by involving them in the conversation.
  • Cost-effective and trustworthy: UGC is a cost-effective way to create content, as you don't have to produce it all yourself. It allows you to tap into the creativity and passion of your audience. Moreover, since UGC comes directly from people who have experienced your brand, it carries a sense of honesty and trustworthiness. This is the reason why social media ads with UGC content get 4X more click-throughs. 
  • Feedback and improvement: UGC can provide valuable feedback and insights into how your audience perceives your brand or uses your products. You can learn from their experiences, identify areas for improvement, and even incorporate their ideas into your future strategies, boosting customer satisfaction and loyalty.

By actively encouraging and promoting UGC, you make your audience an integral part of your brand's story and journey. 

Examples of user-generated content

Here are some examples of user-generated content that can help build trust and foster a sense of community:

Testimonials: Encourage your customers to share their experiences and feedback about your products or services. They can provide written testimonials or record short videos talking about their positive interactions with your brand. Display these testimonials on your website, social media, or even in promotional materials to showcase the satisfaction of your customers.

Reviews: Ask your customers to write reviews on platforms like Google, Yelp, or specific review sites relevant to your industry. Positive reviews from satisfied customers can influence potential customer's decision-making process and build trust in the quality and credibility of your offerings.

User-submitted content: Invite your audience to share photos and videos of themselves using or experiencing your products. This can include anything from wearing your clothing line to using your home decor items or showcasing their culinary creations using your kitchen gadgets. Sharing this content on your website or social media platforms not only promotes your products but also encourages others to get involved.

In this example, Lululemon shares a carousel image of their followers wearing their clothes. Their followers can see how the outfits will look like on regular people in everyday lighting.

Social media posts: Keep an eye out for social media posts where your audience shares their experiences or mentions your brand. With Iconoosquare’s social media monitoring feature, you can monitor all mentions of your brand on social media. Try for free.

Repost or share these posts on your own social media channels. Remember, when featuring user-generated content, always seek permission from the content creators and give proper credit. This not only respects their rights but also encourages others to contribute. By showcasing the voices and experiences of your audience, you'll not only build trust but also create a vibrant and engaged community around your brand. 

5. Engaging Contests and Challenges

Contests and challenges are like magnets for participation and engagement! They provide a clear incentive for your audience to get involved. Whether it's a chance to win a prize, gain recognition, or showcase their skills, people are motivated to participate when there's something valuable or rewarding at stake.

When used right, contests and challenges create a sense of excitement and anticipation. They generate a buzz around your brand as people discuss, share, and participate. This heightened energy helps increase brand visibility and attract new audiences who are intrigued by the contest or challenge.

Not only that, well-designed contests and challenges have the potential to go viral. 94.46% of the time, participants will share the promotion immediately after registering. When participants share their entries or encourage others to join in, it can create a snowball effect, reaching a wider audience and boosting engagement. The viral nature of these campaigns can significantly amplify your brand's exposure.

Techniques for planning and executing effective contests and challenges

Planning and executing effective contests and challenges requires careful thought and a strategic approach. Here are some techniques to help you plan and execute them successfully:

Define your objectives: Start by clarifying your objectives. Are you aiming to increase brand awareness, generate user-generated content, or engage your audience? Clearly define what you want to achieve with the contest or challenge to guide your planning process.

Know your audience: Understand your target audience's interests, preferences, and motivations. Then tailor your contest or challenge to align with their desires and ensure it resonates with their needs. Consider what types of prizes, themes, or activities will capture their attention and encourage participation.

Choose the right format: Select a format that suits your objectives and target audience. It could be a photo or video submission contest, a skill-based challenge, a voting contest, or even a scavenger hunt. The format should be engaging, accessible, and aligned with your brand values.

Set clear guidelines: Establish clear guidelines for participation, entry requirements, submission deadlines, and any other important details. Transparent and easy-to-follow guidelines promote fairness and reduce confusion.

Create attractive prizes: Be creative with the prizes and consider what would truly excite and motivate participants. It could be exclusive access to your products, discounts, experiences, or even collaborations with your brand.

Promote and amplify: Develop a strong promotional strategy to generate buzz and maximize participation. Leverage your website, email newsletters, social media channels, influencers, and partnerships to spread the word about your contest or challenge. Also, craft compelling and visually appealing content to grab attention and generate excitement.

Foster engagement: Encourage participants to tag your brand, use specific branded hashtags, follow you, or share their entries on social media. This creates a ripple effect and helps broaden the reach of your contest or challenge.

Maintain communication: Keep participants informed throughout the contest or challenge. Provide updates on submission deadlines, announce winners in a timely manner, and show appreciation for everyone who participated. Effective and consistent communication builds trust and strengthens the relationship with your audience.

By employing these techniques, you can plan and execute contests and challenges that capture the attention, engagement, and enthusiasm of your audience, while achieving your desired goals. 

Final Thoughts

Experimentation, consistency, and understanding your audience's preferences are like the power trio of social media content creation. Let's break them down one by one, shall we?

First up, experimentation!  Think of social media as your personal laboratory of engagement. Trying out different types of content, formats, and strategies allows you to discover what works best for your audience. Whether it's witty captions, captivating visuals, or interactive polls, push the boundaries and see what resonates. Just remember, even Thomas Edison didn't invent the light bulb on his first attempt, so don't be discouraged if some experiments fail. Learn and iterate!

Next, we have consistency.  Imagine if your favorite TV show had episodes airing at random times or if your favorite author published books sporadically. It wouldn't be the same, would it? Consistency builds trust and expectation. Establish a routine for sharing your content that aligns with your audience's habits. Whether it's daily posts, weekly updates, or monthly newsletters, be reliable and show up consistently. Don't make your audience play hide-and-seek with your content. 

Some articles to help with that:

Finally, understanding your audience's preferences is like the secret sauce of social media success.  Every audience is unique, so take time to get to know your followers. Dive into analytics, engage with comments and direct messages, and conduct surveys to uncover what makes them tick. Do they prefer bite-sized videos or long-form blog posts? Are they into memes or inspirational quotes? Tailor your content to their tastes and interests. 

Combine these three elements, and you'll create a social media strategy that works. Experiment, be consistent, and understand your audience's preferences. Just remember, it's not a one-size-fits-all formula. Embrace the journey, be open to learning, and enjoy the process. May your content spread like wildfire!

the writer


Copywriter @Iconosquare

Hi! I'm Marvellous, huge fan of Iconosquare as a product, and determined to help experienced social media marketers thrive in the various aspects of their career.


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