Want to elevate your social media marketing? Looking for a strategy that forges connections and builds genuine community? 

In this article, we’ll explore social posting strategy.

Social Posting Strategy: Building Community and Connection by Social Media Examiner
This article was co-created by Katie Brinkley and Michael Stelzner. For more about Katie, scroll to Other Notes From This Episode at the end of this article.

Why is Building Social Community and Connection so Important?

In a world where social media has become synonymous with endless scrolling and mindless consumption of content, digital marketer, author, and podcaster Katie Brinkley argues that we must return to the original purpose of social platforms: making meaningful connections.

In her recent book, The Social Shift: The Road Back to Community, Katie traces the history of social media, from early platforms like MySpace that facilitated friendship, shared common interests, and dialogue to modern networks like TikTok built for endless streams of impersonal content. She contends that while new technologies have connected more people than ever before, many interactions have become superficial at best.

For business owners, it can be overwhelming when people say you must post constantly to see results. When do you have time to build your business if you’re always on that content hamster wheel? Social media is an affordable marketing and brand loyalty tool. But creating content just to create it is pointless, Katie believes.  

Authentic community-building efforts on social media platforms require strategy and intention. Businesses and influencers must shift their mindset away from vanity metrics like follower counts and toward nurturing genuine relationships.

Understand who you want to reach and how your business can impact them. Then, you’ll attract the right audience who want to hear what makes you and your business unique. If you cultivate an engaged social media community, you’ll form a loyal tribe of brand devotees. Authentic connections can happen fast online if you have the intention. It’s hard to show who you are online, but magic happens with the right strategy.

Community-building will matter more than ever in the internet era of Web3 and decentralization. So, you must be intentional with your social media time and presence today.

How to Build Community and Connection With a Social Posting Strategy

When you implement the right social posting strategy, you’ll reach the people who matter with just a few quality weekly posts. You’ll understand what content your target audience connects with. 

You can raise awareness around your ideal customer’s struggles and educate them on solutions. With greater strategy and awareness, your social presence will attract more ideal clients, even with less frequent posting.

Ultimately, it’s about reaching the right people with the right message. Implementing an intentional social media strategy allows you to build a meaningful, loyal community and awareness for your business. 

Katie details a four-step strategy for creating authentic social media communities rather than simply seeking self-promotion. This streamlined framework entails four types of social media posts. Each post serves a specific purpose tailored to user needs and platform algorithms:

Step 1: Awareness Post 

The first step is creating an awareness post about your ideal customer’s problem. Use whatever social media channels work best for you. 

For example, Instagram Reels work well for broad reach, while LinkedIn polls are good for easy engagement. The goal is to throw a wide net to reach and pique the interest of as many potential customers as possible before giving a sales pitch.

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It’s like Forrest Gump on his fishing boat throwing out his net to catch shrimp. He might catch some other things, too, but he hopes to catch as many shrimp as possible. Your awareness content is the net catching any potential customers. Give your target audience a taste of the problem and solution so they want to learn more.

Discussing problems builds awareness because it positions you as the solution before people even know they have that problem. When you post about a common struggle your ideal customers have, it taps into what they’re already searching for answers about. Even if they didn’t know they had that pain point, they now see you have the solution.

It comes down to deeply understanding your ideal customers and their frustrations. Create content for their needs, not yours. When you address their hidden problems, you become the expert they didn’t know they needed.

Maybe you’re selling services instead of a product. For example, if you’re a realtor and want to make people care that you are selling houses in the suburbs of Littleton, CO, you could make a post that says, “Littleton locals—are you feeling like you’ve tried all the restaurants downtown? Think again! Here are the top 5 NEW dining hotspots opening in 2024 that you need reservations for ASAP… ”.  

The goal here is to position yourself as a local real estate expert. It tackles some misconceptions that there are limited dining options in the suburbs.

The key is knowing where your ideal customers are online and tailoring awareness content for each social media platform. It’s not a copy-paste strategy.

On your Facebook page, simple text posts with colored backgrounds grab attention and get reach. For example, Katie created one announcing her new book—a quick line made many people aware it was published.

On Instagram, Reels work best. For example, Katie created Reels revealing three tools she uses weekly that reduce social media overwhelm and save her customers hours in a workday, quickly pointing to each one on screen. It makes people aware there are time-saving tools they could implement.

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The point is to meet your audience where they are with the type of content that the platform best amplifies. Create customized awareness posts for each social media channel you use.

Step 2: Elaboration Post

The next step is the elaboration post. You take the topic you spotlighted in the awareness post and go deeper, establishing more trust and expertise through helpful ideas, tools, tips, resources, or data. 

If your awareness post was on LinkedIn, do a LinkedIn article or newsletter to elaborate. If it was on Instagram, create a carousel post expanding on the awareness Reel.

Elaboration is your chance to prove to new and existing followers that you truly understand their problems and can provide solutions. It shows the human side of your business.

You can write content, but going live to elaborate can feel more authentic. For example, share a weekly live video to elaborate on your awareness post theme in a Facebook group.

Awareness posts tend to reach more people and attract new eyes to your content. The elaboration posts go deeper for those already engaged and loyal followers.

Katie often bases her awareness posts around a topic she wants to cover on her podcast. For example, she asks her audience who still uses Threads. Then, the responses and data from that awareness post give her great content to elaborate on for her engaged online community.

So, the awareness brings in a broader reach of new people, and elaboration nurtures the discussion with existing fans. Together, they add value and generate interest and trust through free, helpful content. When people see you genuinely want to educate them, they’ll be more inclined to purchase your paid products or services eventually.

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Katie admits that too much posting can be unsustainable even with a solid strategy. The intention behind this awareness and elaboration sequence is quality over quantity. The entire cycle only requires posting around 3–4 times per week, not every day.

Of course, you can tailor the frequency to your availability. The key is not burning yourself out. 

So, instead of an endless hamster wheel of daily posts, use this sequence strategically and pace yourself. That frees up more time for the high-touch elements that build a thriving social media community. Then, when you do post, you maximize the impact.

Step 3: Community-Building Post 

The third step is the community-building post. This post establishes trust by showing the personal side of you and your business. This engaging content should feel more raw and vulnerable, focusing on storytelling over selling.

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Share your own story and journey. For Katie’s business, she often does live videos or reflective blog posts about her experience launching an agency as a mom with young children at home.

The goal is to give people compelling reasons to support YOU, not just your offering. In a crowded market, what makes you stand out? Show your personality, passions, backstory, and lived experiences. Allowing your followers to get to know and like you builds your online communities. For example, maybe Katie’s followers relate to her background as a sports reporter, or they live in the same town.

Let’s pick a theme (artificial intelligence) and take it through the posting sequence: First, make an awareness post asking your followers if they see AI as an opportunity or threat—a quick poll question sparks interest. Next, elaborate on a cool AI marketing resource you discovered—a video demo of you trying the tool to showcase its capabilities. Then, create a community-building post that explains how integrating AI into your process has allowed you to become more efficient and get more done. You can tie it back to personal goals like spending more time with family. 

Remember to tailor each sequence phase for the specific social media platform audience. 

For example, Katie makes Instagram Reels (awareness) about how social media tools save her customers time and effort. Next, her elaboration is a carousel of the tools’ time-saving capabilities.

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Then, she shared a picture of her and her daughter and discussed how using the tools allowed her to become her daughter’s softball coach and spend more quality time together (community-building post). On Instagram, Katie knows that most of her audience is females aged 35 to 44. That personal connection resonates since her followers relate to her as fellow mompreneurs. 

The same sequence on LinkedIn would focus the community post on how the tools enabled Katie to expand her team and save her business money annually since her audience is primarily male founders who care about leadership and scale.

It’s still centered around the same helpful tools and how they created time freedom. But you shape the message to align with what matters most to each audience. This level of intentional, strategic content keeps them engaged.

Community-building posts are also an excellent opportunity to leverage user-generated content or client testimonials of how you helped somebody.

Social Media Community-Building Strategy in the Age of AI 

AI is revolutionizing how we interact online and create content—authentic experiences build relationships.

Sharing personal stories and transparency around your journey lets people relate to the real you. That nurtures community in a way AI can’t replicate.

Opening up through community posts attracts followers who want to root for you, not just buy from you. They might not purchase yet, but they’ll advocate for you by telling friends or buying lower-commitment offers like your book or a masterclass.

It’s a depth-over-scale approach—you might have fewer overall followers, but you’ll have a higher-quality community. And those purposeful social media connections convert into loyal brand advocates and customers for life. No AI can replace that personal relationship and trust.

Step 4: Action Post 

The final step is a soft call-to-action post, not a hard sales pitch. The key to this posting strategy is nurturing trust with your audience by providing value upfront without immediate asks. 

Once you’ve guided your audience through awareness, elaboration, and community so they relate to and like you, make soft suggestions to continue the journey elsewhere, like inviting them to listen to an educational podcast episode.

When done right, the upside-down funnel brings the most qualified, engaged people to you. Then they’ll willingly click away from social media to buy from your site, read your book, or attend a webinar.

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Going back to the earlier AI example, an action post in the sequence could be: “I’ve brought top AI experts to my conference to teach our community about this emerging technology and make sure no one gets left behind. Do you have your ticket?” 

The end call-to-action ties back to the original theme. You lead people on a journey, showing you understand their challenges, have conquered them yourself, and want to shortcut their learning curve by connecting them with experts. 

It’s crucial to lead with generosity, not sales. The community you build will excitedly raise their hands when you have something to help them reach their goals.

Katie insists that “who” must come before “buy.” Making followers feel acknowledged, respected, appreciated, and cared for nurtures the intimacy social media promised since its inception.

Making direct sales pitches through organic social media can tamper with each platform’s algorithm and squash your reach. Instead of including links in action posts, have followers engage by commenting or DMing you first. It creates two big advantages:

  • You build a direct connection and can follow up one-on-one via DM. This is where the magic happens in turning followers into true community members and customers.
  • You quickly filter out who your biggest fans are who want your help. For example, if someone comments “podcast”, they eagerly listen and want to discuss it. The setup gets them to raise their hand before you give the link.

To get the ball rolling, use different DM automation tools across multiple platforms like Stampede Social or Manychat

Links can come across as sales-y, while comments and DMs foster relationships. And those real connections ultimately drive referrals, word of mouth, and long-term loyalty.

Engaging publicly in post comments generates enormous value:

  • When you thoughtfully comment on relevant posts, it gives you real estate in other feeds.
  • Commenting back shows YOU listen and care. Only about 1% of people comment, so thoughtfully responding makes your followers feel heard and valued. 
  • Further discussion helps boost your visibility in each platform’s algorithm.

Ultimately, public engagement builds community and nurtures fans organically. It plays a crucial role in converting followers into customers. Engaging beyond scheduled posts proves you intentionally create content to help people, not just grow an audience. Nothing replaces public back-and-forth for building relationships and trust!

Other Notes From This Episode

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