Promotional images and videos. Fun, playful content. Previews of your blog. Reposts of other relevant content.

These are just some of the posts you could include in your social media content mix – the collective feed you use to build your brand presence. With the right content mix, you’ll build brand awareness, cultivate trust, generate leads, and motivate more people to purchase from you.

The key to any successful social content mix is motivating audience engagement – to generate likes, comments, re-posts, and keep followers scrolling through your account.

But finding the optimal content mix can be difficult. How do marketers find the social media content mix that delivers the best results?

We ran a survey to find out. A total of 118 marketers shared their insights, and their best content recommendations are listed below. But first, let’s find out how often marketers include popular types of posts in their content mix.

Building a social media content mix

We asked marketers how often they included various types of posts in their content mix (see charts below). They were also given a choice between six different frequencies: not at all, rarely, sometimes, often, very often, or extremely often.

The results showed that most marketers prioritize posting fun content that resonates with their audience, and promoting other trust-building content (such as blog posts).

Here are the types marketers post “often,” “very often,” or “extremely often”:

  • 78% post fun content that resonates with their audience
  • 74% promote other content, like blog posts
  • 26% promote new products
  • 45% post about existing products

We’ve included the full breakdown of results below.

New product posts

how often brands post about new products

Fun content that resonates with audiences

how often brands post fun content that resonates

Promotions of other content (such as blog posts)

How often brands post to promote content

User-generated content

how often brands post ugc

Promotions of existing products

How often brands post to promote existing content

Other types of content

how often brands post other content

Some types of posts included in the “other” category include educational posts to directly build thought leadership, promotions of others’ content, “behind the scenes” looks at a business, and other company updates.

Constructing a content mix to boost engagement

To build a consistent brand presence and drive engagement from the target audience, what types of social media content do experts recommend? Let’s find out.

Post content that resonates with your audience

Alison Schroeder of Vye says, “Write for your audience. You need to identify which buyer persona you are crafting the message for. Then, identify their values, goals, and interests.

“Your personas guide the topics you cover on social media, the memes you may include (or definitely not include), and the platform on which the messages will be placed. Using personas creates a connection between your brand and the audience. It fosters trust – a monumental piece of the buying process.”

Haley Johnson of Refuel Agency advises, “Building a brand on social media is all about building trust with your audience through consistency, commitment, and valuable content.

“Your social media presence has to provide more than fluff for anyone to want to stick around. Know your target audience well – and then solve their problems, answer their questions, and give them a reason to want to listen to you. Create a social media presence that’s so valuable that they can’t afford to miss out.”

refuel agency marketing to young Black consumers

refuel agency working around adblockers

Refuel Agency on Facebook

Gabriella Horvath of PanIQ Escape Room says, “The key is to identify the top interests of your potential customers and consistently entertain them. In our case, we post brain teasers and funny memes for escape room enthusiasts. We also focus on graphic design so we have a strong brand identity online.”
paniq escape room brain teaser

@paniqroom on Instagram

Theresa Lina of Lina Group says, “Help your audience. Many companies make a costly mistake: They lack a theme and point of view that’s immediately clear to the audience and adds meaningful value for them. This mistake creates confusion about what you stand for and squanders opportunities to build valuable, differentiated brand equity. In contrast, a single theme and point of view helps make you the go-to for a particular issue. You actively help your audience with insights and stand out.”

Mark Hayes of Kintell shares, “On our social media, we regularly chat with subject matter experts, celebrate customer success stories, and give people real insight as to what it’s like using our platform. Our audience can enjoy free snippets of expertise courtesy of the experts on our platform, and can decide for themselves whether there’s a professional they’d like to speak to.”

kintell linkedin post

Maria Saigatova of Blast Sourcing advises, “When it comes to our brand’s online presence in social media, it is all about building relationships and providing value. We are doing it not to hard-sell our services, but to establish trust and promote ourselves as a reliable brand. We choose people and relationships with them over sales and constant offerings. Providing value is simple. It starts with being responsive and helpful when it comes to general queries, customer challenges, and solving their pain points.”

optimizing facebook ads

Blast Sourcing on Facebook

Oliver Andrews of OA Design Services shares, “If you create content that is informative, useful, and valuable to viewers, they will see your brand in a positive light. For example, create a contest on your social media platforms and let your followers share the news. Set up the contest so that for each action, your fans receive an additional entry into the contest.  People love to win something for nothing.”

Stand out in people’s feeds with quality content

Kim Brown of Condo Control Central advises, “People are exposed to hundreds of brands on social media every day. You need something to make you stand out, and quickly, so your target audience doesn’t keep scrolling. It might be video, it might be a very simple design or logo. Whatever you do, it has to be representative of your brand and catch your audience’s attention.”

Kirsten Selvage of ShopPros tells us, “Make sure you’re offering something to your prospective clients. Tips, tricks, pieces of advice – people recognize selling on social media in the time it takes for a post to show up in a newsfeed. Quality content branded to your business, posted regularly, is important to engage clients. So when you do post a sale or offer, that post is in front of as many eyes as possible.”

Limit the overtly promotional content

Patrick Garde of ExaWeb advises, “Stop talking mostly about your business. Just like in real life, most people will pay no attention to your social media page if you talk about your business 24/7.

“Instead, share something that’s interesting or adds value so fans will engage with your page. In our experience, the posts that get higher engagement are non-promotional. Our Monday motivation post gets more likes than any other post for the week because people can relate to it more.”

exaweb motivation monday

ExaWeb on Facebook

Kerry Thompson of ClientsFirst says, “Be conversational. Plenty of businesses on social media too frequently only broadcast outbound messages. Followers are soon turned off by that one-dimensional nature. Instead, initiate conversations with others, mention them, and turn the spotlight to external content once in a while. Talk to your customers on social media like you would talk to them in person. Do this, and you’ll get far better engagement, more followers, and greater click throughs when required.”

Create long-form posts

Hilary Droke of Fracture shares, “Don’t be afraid of long-form captions on Insta. Your fans follow you for a reason – they want to know what you have to say! Take advantage of the generous character limit and use it to tell a story or educate your following on a topic that aligns with your brand values.

“You always want to ask yourself the ‘Why?’ behind what you’re posting. What value are you giving your followers with this post? By taking advantage of long-form content, you’re giving yourself the time and space to share authentically. Your followers will notice.”

Ask for your followers’ input through your posts

Helen Hall of Blender Bombs says, “I consistently ask over 100k of my followers their opinions on new flavors, what stores consumers want to see Blender Bombs products in, and how our  products can be improved. I also use Instagram polls, questions, and challenges to gauge consumer feedback – and it’s working!

“In fact, I used Instagram to ask my followers if anyone had a connection to Whole Foods, and that’s how I was able to secure Blender Bombs products in their stores – all from a direct message from a follower. Whole Foods just began carrying Blender Bombs in 350+ stores.”

blender bombs instagram challenge

blender bombs question on instagram

@blenderbombs on Instagram

Use Instagram Stories to show authenticity

Christina Cay of C’mon Mama says, “Utilize Stories on Instagram. People love to see the face behind the brand. They feel like they know you when you share videos, talk to them, or ask them things. My engagement on my Instagram Stories is through the roof, even compared to my engagement on classic posts. Stories have that alluring behind-the-scenes appeal and should absolutely be used to every brand’s advantage.”

cmon mama question 1cmon mama question 2

@cmon.mama on Instagram

Repurpose and promote blog content

Thomas Bolt of Big EVAL advises, “On any social media platform, it’s ideal to take advantage of the opportunity to highlight your blog content. On your blog, you likely feature your products or services in great detail, so directing a reader or potential client to your blog to take advantage of a how-to guide can really lead to conversions.”

big eval infographic on data quality

@BiGEVAL on Twitter

Matthew Stormoen shares,“Get the most out of your content by repurposing for social media. Match the content format with the channel; this will help make it seem fresh even if it’s being repurposed. Present your content in different formats that are fit for the channel. Say, from a blog article, white paper, or case study, information can be turned into a nifty infographic for Twitter and Facebook.”

Laura Burden of Burden Brand Management shares, “I will usually stretch one blog post into multiple social media feed posts, a few videos, multiple pins on Pinterest, multiple stories on Instagram, and more. I like to use Asana to organize my content and keep tabs on which format it’s been made into and what formats it still needs to be made into for social.”

Invest in quality visuals

Rorie Devine of Gro.Team shares, “Visual content attracts the users of social media much more than textual. Experiment with different visuals: include videos, infographics, quotes, tips, GIFs, and eye-catching images. Photos on platforms like Facebook and Instagram, get more engagement. Even adding images to LinkedIn posts will give you a higher engagement rate.”

Carmen Varner advises, “Invest in photography. Custom photography will go a lot further than dull stock shots of people at the beach or a random coffee. People want to see your team, your office, what you do. You don’t have to spend thousands. Simply determine some content and ideas, and take a bunch of photos. It doesn’t have to be a big production. If you’re scared, pay your iPhone-savvy 14-year-old niece to take some photos – office decor, meeting room, products, team, people working, and start there. Even some starting photos tell a story: “Wow, look how far we’ve come!”

Use video to your advantage

Brian Robben of Robben Media recommends, “When the goal is to build a brand through social media, commit to videos. Short, medium, and long videos will do more for your brand than anything else. In a clip, audiences get to not only see your brand, but get to better understand your mission and values. Not only that, social media users are more likely to engage with videos, leading to more brand interactions.”

Natik Ameen of Incrementors Web Solutions tells us, “In our experience, video plays an important role in building your brand. It gets maximum engagement on popular social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter. Creating video-based content will boost your brand awareness and increase your number of followers.”

Kim Hale of Kim Hale Public Relations says, “Stop telling people what you do, show them what you do. Instead of posting graphics and flyers telling people about your brand, create engaging video content that shows people what you do. In the case of the Debbie Allen Dance Academy Instagram, I regularly shot video of students in their daily dance classes. These videos served as the brand’s ‘storefront window.’ Nothing fancy or highly produced. With this strategy I was able to organically grow the brand’s Instagram following from 0 – 151K in a few short years.”


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Debbie Allen Dance Academy (@officialdadance) on

Inject humor into posts

Stefanie Siclot of Growth Rocket says, “What really works right now is adding humor to your post on social media. A photo post would have more engagement compared to just caption-only posts. Adding humor that is timely is the big thing now so this means taking advantage of the current situation or current trend and adding a sense out of it. One great example is relating your photo post to a viral video on YouTube and relating that humor to your brand.”

Create timely, relevant content

Kimberly Smith of Clarify Capital attests, “Seasoned marketers understand the importance of creating timely and relevant content. Consumers are interested in content they can relate to, and are inclined to share content that’s specific to their current reality. Sometimes, the things that feel custom-made for us are reflective of transient interests – they’re valuable because they address what’s happening as it’s happening to us.

“When we leverage trends, we’re building conversation around what’s impactful and on our minds. These things may not garner attention year after year, but they certainly garner attention. And when we don’t participate for fear of future irrelevance, we miss out on huge opportunities for relationship building, engagement, and visibility.”

Wrapping things up

With these inspirations from experts in mind, we hope you’re inspired to refine and refresh your social media content mix. Remember to keep your audience at the forefront of all your content mix decisions. Offering meaningful value to them will keep them engaged, far more than overtly promotional posts will.

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