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How to Create an Excellent Social Media Post

Have you ever wondered the steps and time it takes to create a social media post that stops the scroll, engages the audience and leads prospective clients to that next step? Let's go behind the scenes and take a peak into the daily life of a professional social media content creator to see how it's done!

Step 1: Plan and Strategize

The most successful Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, TikTok and Twitter accounts have a strategic plan that guides the daily posts. Everything from the colours, the content type, the text/captions and the hashtags are all guided by this plan.

At Small Town Girl Promotions - STGP, when we onboard a new monthly social media client, we meet with them for up to 2 hours and co-create a strategic Social Media Marketing Plan. This 3-10 page document contains information about the business, the business' goals, branding and visual aesthetic, competition, a strategic posting plan, and more!

So, in Step 1, the social media manager will review the Social Media Marketing Plan and ensure that the content that he/she/they is about to create aligns with the short and long term goals of the business.

Where are we in the posting plan? Who is the target audience? What are the brand guidelines?... These are all questions that need answers before we even think about opening up Canva or InDesign!

Step 2: Review the Data

As a brand grows and develops its voice on social media, certain posts will resonate with the audience more. In other words, certain posts will stand out because they received more engagement (likes, comments, shares, clicks) than others. It's important to stay "in tune" with what types of posts are resonating with the audience.

A social media manager at STGP will review the data monthly and create a detailed report for the client. In between reports, they will take a scroll through recent past posts and take note of which posts are getting the most engagement from the brand's audience. "Do more of what's working" is what we always say!

Step 3: Communicate with the Client A business or organization's focus can shift dramatically from season to season, month to month, or even week to week or day to day! As we saw during the Covid pandemic, businesses who are able and willing to adapt and pivot with changing market conditions are more poised for success.

In Step 3, the social media manager will connect and communicate with the client. Often times this is the business owner, but it can also be a manager or other employee. As long as the social media manager is able to touch base with someone at the business/organization that knows the day-to-day happenings, that's the key!

At this stage the social media manager will ask questions like:

  • Is there anything new or different happening in your business lately?

  • Would you like your social media posts to focus on something in particular this week?

  • Does your business have a certain focus for sales right now?

  • How are you liking the recent posts? Is there anything you'd like to see done differently?

  • Is there anything else I should know?

Step 4: Gather the Raw Materials

Next up, we need to gather the images, videos, and information that will be used in the next post that we create. Sometimes there are certain logos or graphic elements we'll need. Other times there's a certain image or video that the client has sent that we will need to find.

During Step 4, the social media manager will reflect on what assets are needed to create the post and gather those raw materials up. They'll load them into a design program such as Canva, InDesign, or so that they're ready to be used.

Step 5: Design the Image / Video

Finally! It's time to create/design the image or video for the social media post that we have in mind! Our team has found that the most engaging social media images or videos generally have the following qualities:

  • are authentic to the business. Images or videos taken at the business generally peform better than stock images or videos.

  • include a human, animal, or food - or all three!

  • evoke emotion. We are emotional beings and so we are more likely to engage with a post that causes us to feel something.

Have you heard the phrase, "a photo is worth 1000 words?" The purpose of the image or video in a social media post is to grab the viewer's attention and stop the scroll, so it's important that the photo remains the star of the image. In other words, the social media manager is careful to not clutter the image with too much text or graphic elements.

Step 6: Write the Caption

Now that you have your "scroll-stopper" ready, it's time to write the words that will go alonside your image(s)/video! The purpose of the caption is to draw the reader in and lead them to taking that next action with your business/brand. Sometimes you'll want them to simply "like" the post and other times you'll be encouraging them to visit your website or sign up for your email list.

Excellent social media content creators/managers are adept at writing captions in the brand's voice. The words and sentences should sound like they are coming directly from the business, not filtered through the individual creating the post.

Struggle with writing? Here are our Top 7 Caption-writing Tips

Step 7: Optimize for the Platform(s)

Each social media platform has it's own unique culture, language and social norms. For example:

  • hashtags belong on Instagram and Twitter, but not so much on Facebook

  • the phrase "DM me" is suitable for Instagram, but we say "PM me" on Facebook

  • it's common to talk about workplace culture and share about your recent promotion on LinkedIn, but not so much on TikTok

  • and so many more...

➡️ The language of each post needs to be suitable for each platform, or else it'll stick out like a sore thumb. There are also platform limitations that are unique to each, for example:

  • the maximum character count for a tweet on Twitter is 280, which is about equivalent to this section of the blog (between the arrows).⬅️

  • you can type a website link in the caption on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter and it'll be clickable. The link will NOT be clickable on Instagram.

  • tagging another account is a great strategy to increase the reach of a post, but you'll have to ensure you're tagging properly on each individual platform.

  • each platform has a different "optimal size and orientation" for the photos and videos in the post.

  • and so many more...

Step 8: Schedule the Post

Knowing what time of day to schedule the post is an essential step in the process. Checking the data within each platform will tell you when your brand/business' followers are on the platform, ensuring that your posts have a better chance of getting seen!

There are a number of scheduling tools that you can use. As of late, most of the social media managers on the STGP team have been using Meta Business Suite for scheduling posts to Facebook and/or Instagram. If you're creating and scheduling posts for LinkedIn, Twitter, or TikTok, you might want to try a scheduler such as Later, Buffer, or Hootsuite. As with any online tool, there are pros and cons to each one.


To create and schedule social media posts that stop the scroll and encourage your potential clients to take that next step with your brand, strategy and planning is involved. It's just simply not as easy as taking a quick photo and posting it. Excellent social media stategy requires time, skills, and consistency.

All of our monthly social media packages include an element of training. Want to learn alongside us as we create excellent content for your brand/business? Learn more about our social media monthly packages HERE.

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The STGP team is here to help with all things social media, website design, graphic design, and online marketing! If you need more eyes on your business, reach out. We love helping business owners take advertising off their TO DO lists.

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