How to Make Your Free Content Stand Out From Social Media Ads.

As you may have already figured out, social networking sites have an alarming number of ads that seemingly looks like reliable, unbiased and helpful content, but are not.

Advertisers have used the power of content marketing so wrongly that sometimes it is so difficult to distinguish sponsored contents from those which are not, just for them to get traffic to their sites.

This strategy mostly works in gaining traffic, but it doesn’t promote loyalty in readership and will most likely not get returns and sales conversion out of their ads, especially when they don’t offer quality and useful content.

If you have a low budget campaign and you fear your campaign may not make it, consider these ways that can make your free posted content still stand out from Social media ads.

Uncover The Nature of Social Media Ads According To Your Channel

There are too many Social Networking Sites that you can use, there’s Facebook of course, Twitter, LinkedIn, Youtube, Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr, and Reddit. Each of these sites have their own advertising scheme and style, so there’s a need for you to study how their most trending advertisers create their ads.

Here’s a quick view on how to take advantage of each sites Ad operations:


The reach of Facebook ads are based on the demographics and psychographics profiles of the target audience. It will only reach the audience that is defined by the nature of the Ad/s being placed.  It is ideal for advertisers who already have a good picture of what they are trying to get.

If you plan to get your content across Facebook users you should have a specific target market, you have to develop a well written content, that is short and directly going to cause curiosity.

Facebook users are often faced with content that is emotionally and psychologically intriguing and this is what you are trying to take advantage of. Your possible choices of content can be: (1) Something that kindles awe about people, nature and mystical creatures or events, (2) Something beyond our senses like ghosts stories, aliens, etc, (3) Something educating people about a specific idea, like biological sciences(4) Something that drives curiosity like space rockets, how to’s and processes that are familiar but unknown, (5) Something that challenges social and cultural instilled fears like death, total eradication of mankind, apocalypse and (6) Something that would awaken social responsibility.

This recommendations might sound novelty, but this is what sells. You don’t have to create fake news and compromise the truth and quality of your content. This is just your stepping stones to getting readership because all of the above mentioned are instilled in humans naturally and that’s where everything starts.

Do take note that Facebook is one of the social media channels that is mostly abused for copy-pasted content. If you are driving for more traffic, do not rely on social media copy-paste. Produce quality content out of your expertise or curiosity.

Intellectual property rights are still applied to online published content and do not underestimate the vastness of web to shield you from litigation. Always link your content to the right sources.


Twitter is obsessed with the limits of words when you make a news headline or an introduction message. So in order for you to affect people in short but sweet manner that will make them hit follow you have to , (1) regularly update a “cool”, relevant and fresh photo and avatar, (2) regularly post trending news, (3) post with human touch, (4) trigger humor, (5) always respond to mentions and retweet posts from followers and (6) always post with photos, GIFs and funny videos.


LinkedIn has targeted ads that works pretty much just like Facebook. But in LinkedIn your written content may or may not be published by LinkedIn itself, and it is quite difficult to know if it was published or not. Pulse is the online content publication of LinkedIn and if you get picked by it, you’ll surely have an enormous amount of chance for exposure, views and followership.

Sure you can publish just about anything you want to share about your profession or company in LinkedIn, but if you want to make it viral here are a few tips you can follow, (1) Write a topic of the month based on their editorial calendar, (2) Use the hashtags that they assigned, (3) Tweet about your post using the same hashtag on Twitter, (4) Add interesting visuals, and (4) Be profession-specific or write interesting topics like technology, artificial intelligence, etc.


Youtube advertising works differently compared to other social media networks. Having an advertisement before your actual video is one way to actually earn money out of your account and only those who have high number of viewership on a regular basis gets that advertisement.

But how do you get your Youtube video viral?

There’s no accurate or concrete formula on how to get your video viral, but there are ways you can try to promote it online.

But before publishing or uploading your video, evaluate its quality. Ask yourself, “will this drive people to share it? If so, why?”.

Most of the viral videos are about funny people or events, adrenaline junkies, fearsome or anything that touches the emotion. So your video should have a strong emotional connection to people once they watch it.

You should also consider how long the video is, the first thing people look at when watching a video online is its length. If it’s too long people are less likely to watch it. As much as possible, it should only be at most 2 minutes long.

It should also have a clear call to action, or should at least have a reason, where the energy it builds up should be released somewhere by people, like sharing the video or hitting the like button.

If you are looking for more shares, try posting the video on sites like Facebook, Twitter or Reddit. Facebook has the widest audience but it is so broad and its first wave of reach may not be the people who will most likely respond. Reddit on the other hand, although not as big as Facebook, has a way to narrow down your reach, meaning the people it will first reach are more likely to take action.

You can also try to send the link to bloggers or famous online influencers. If your video is interesting enough to link to on their blogs they would gladly post it. Also link people or authority sites that has something to do with your video. Like the place where you’re at, the camera or makeup you used, or anything that has some exposure or mention in your video possible.

Just like Google, if Youtube senses your videos presence everywhere online, it will also make it appear on its homepage upon landing.

Once your video goes viral, then regularly add more videos, with value, so you can have more followership and that’s where money starts to come in. Make sure to release the videos on the right time and day, and think when most of your target audience or followers usually go online.


Pinterest is all about being tenacious enough to find wonderful pins. The key is to create a description or title that is easily findable, just like keyword researching in Google.

You have the option to pin your own photos or you can pin other people’s pins as well or boards. In pinning make sure it is pin-worthy or visually appealing. Join group boards and keep repinning. Don’t forget to link to your blog as well, so you can easily be found and after all this is the end to all the means.


Making viral contents on Tumblr is also a process or reposting just like how other social media sites work, and it requires the same effort and asks for the same strategies. It is also a matter of experimentation as there’s no really accurate way of detailing how your content can go viral.

But as mentioned, you can link your tumblr account with your other social media accounts, ask friends and influencers to share it.


Reddit is one of the most important tools in strategizing viral contents. Reddit shares a fair amount of users, of almost 250 million people. Reddits divides itself into subreddits when you are submitting content.

This is the reason why Reddit is effective, the users themselves recognize what content they want to see, which is the total opposite of Facebook, where Facebook itself, decides on its own standards what you should see which they had based on the recent pages or people you liked. The only key to getting viral posts in Reddit, aside from having high- value content, is to choose the right subreddit to post it on.

Choose the most relevant subreddit for your post, that’s where your post starts getting viral.


Instagram is an avenue to make viral photos and loop videos like gifs. Since instagram only asks photos or gif-like videos you have to make sure that it creates impact in just one look or it deserves to be looked at again.

Instagram are being used by people to post photos of themselves or just a folder of their amazing photos, but apart from that it is also a great marketing tool. If you can create a statement about situations or people in just a photo, you can drive more people to your blog or to your site, where they can see more or learn more about you and what you do.

One solid example is to create short clips or pictures of famous people online, letting the picture itself carry the news. It should create intrigue and curiosity or it should touch human emotions.

Target Culturally

Culture is one of the key factors in getting your content become viral without spending a penny. Ads are usually general in nature, so targeting your content based on culture is one way for you to reach the audience that would be most interested in it.

If you plan to target culturally, you should give a hint about it on the title of your content itself. Remember, people would only care about it if it has something to do with them. You can be ultra- specific in your content, like adding city or landmarks on the title.

Your title should not reveal it all, make sure to add a touch of intrigue or curiosity.

In addition to what’s being said in the previous items for each social media channel, images that causes optical illusion also gather audiences and shares.


In year 2016, influencers have been very busy writing content and since these efforts have been proven to be helpful in generating traffic, they focused on creating more content but disregarded the quality of each. People have been more fond of creating “clickbait” content that offers less value making the search all the more difficult for people.

In addition to this dilemma, search engines and social media channels have added Ads that are presented just like a normal unsponsored content. This strategy has flocked everywhere and as end users become used to this, the time spent on each site becomes lesser, which also results to lesser satisfaction.

Due to these reasons online influencers and bloggers call for valuable and high quality content. It is foreseen that as year 2017 kicks in, high quality content will be demanded to override the number of social media sponsored content that offer less quality and biased messages.

In the year 2017, the tug-of-war between sponsored content/ Ads versus free content will officially begin.


Author Bio:

Vincent Spivey is a writer, researcher and a passionate blogger. He is also an active content marketer, and his main drive is about unique and original content. He is currently connected with the Livingston and Loeffler Law firm, who helps his campaign against rampant plagiarism practice in social media and the web as a whole.