Biz Extra

The 80/20 Rule: Getting your social media right from the experts in the know at Digital Storm

By Staff Reporter [email protected]

Published: April 27, 2021 | Updated: 28th April 2021

Social media.

It seems pretty straightforward, right?

We all saw what happened earlier this month when Marks and Spencer decided to take legal action against a chocolate caterpillar…

Social media went crazy for it, writes Natalka Antoniuk, Marketing Manager, Digital Storm.

In one weekend, the two hashtags #freecuthbert and #teamcolin received over 7,000 mentions on Instagram alone. The UK population were desperate to get in on the action and shout about their favourite chocolate caterpillar.

Aldi alone saw 460,229 people engaging with them via their different social media channels off the back of their #freecuthbert campaign. And if you’re not convinced that that means anything in a business sense, they also recorded a 6.08% increase in purchase consideration.

Meanwhile, Marks and Spencer faced a 2.72% drop in purchase consideration…

At this point, it’s important to remind you that Marks and Spencer and Aldi are massive global brands. Both of them have huge followings, made ever easier with impressive brand awareness. It’s hard for the smaller businesses in our community to make that kind of impression on the internet.

Hard, yes. But impossible, no.

Digital Storm works with businesses across Dorset to drive social media growth. We use the 80/20 rule to keep audiences engaged and interacting with local brands online.

As you now know, a Facebook like or Instagram follow can mean big things for your business. Of course, you’re increasing brand awareness and website traffic, but you’re also:

  • Increasing purchase consideration
  • Generating leads
  • Building relationships

This list goes on.

Today, almost 50% of people admit to conducting all of their brand research on social media – do your social channels give the right message about your business?

The 80/20 rule will teach you how to level up your social media game, helping you to achieve those business goals you’ve been chasing.

The trick is to build an online community that people want to be a part of. That means making it less about you and more about your audience. Be honest. How many people do you think care about all of the services you offer? Or how amazing your product is?

Yes, at some point someone will come across your profile around the time that they are looking for your product or service. But at least 80% of the time they couldn’t care less…

That’s why the 80/20 social media rule is key to driving social media growth for your business. Only 20% of the content you put out there should shout about how great your company is. The other 80%? It should be useful.

What is the 80/20 Rule?

Let’s think about your marketing goals over the next 6 months. I imagine you’re aiming to increase sales, generate revenue and get more customers. That’s great, but you won’t achieve that on social media by shouting.

Social media isn’t a free advertising platform. It’s a community of people that might have an interest in your business. But to find those people, and to build an audience out of them, you have to offer content that they actually want to see.

Your audience aren’t on social media to do business. They’re there to escape the daily grind. If you want to be successful with your social media marketing, this is what you have to do.

80% of Your Social Media Content Should Be:


Everyone’s an expert at something. What does your business specialise in? The chances are, you’re sitting on a lot of information that an audience would find useful.

There are lots of ways you can create useful content. Give reminders of important dates, tell your audience when the clocks are changing or recommend a Netflix series to binge-watch. ‘Useful’ doesn’t mean explaining your businesses USP over and over again.

These posts may have no relevance to your business, which you might find terrifying at first. Obviously, you can create branded graphics that still reflect your organisation. By following this social media strategy, you’re guaranteed to see growth in engagement.


The Aldi and M&S saga tells you everything you need to know about entertaining content. It works.

People love it when brands come out of their shell. It’s relatable, personable and helps you build relationships. Okay, you might not want to document a legal battle with your competitors – but there are millions of great examples where a brands’ social media manager went a little of course.

Entertaining content is designed purely for your audience… and nobody knows them better than you do. What will your audience chuckle at? A meme can go a long way in social media land.


What does your business do? And how can you use that information to help people? Tons of Instagram accounts exist purely to educate their audience. Some focus on sales, others on marketing… There’s an account that covers pretty much any topic you might want to find out about.

What do all of these accounts have in common? They all have thousands of followers.

Yep. They’ve built strong followings by offering useful information. And they don’t sell anything. Share your expertise with your audience, not just your products and services. They’ll thank you for it.

Solves a Problem

Your business exists for a reason, to solve a problem. That problem is something that all of your customers will have in common so you should be utilising it to create powerful, engaging content.

Think about your audience and work out what they are struggling with right now. Share content that helps combat their problems, not by selling your services, but by offering genuine insights that you’ve learnt through years of experience.

20% of Social Media Should Be:

For every 10 pieces of content you share on social media, 2 of them will be about your business. Only 2.

As a social media user myself, I can tell you that I follow very few businesses and I definitely don’t engage with the vast majority of their content. When was the last time you liked a post from a business?

With that being said, you want to make sure that your audience knows who you are and what you can do. You’ve already offered information to help them solve their problems, what else can you do if they need more help?

Promote Your Business

The 20% is your opportunity to shout about how great your business is. This is where you can promote your products and services. The best part about the 80/20 social media strategy is that you’ll naturally build an audience that has demonstrated an interest in what you do.

The 80% of your posts that are useful, entertaining and educational tell your audience what kind of business you are. After all, you are producing content that is central to your business and industry.

The final 20% of your posts will tell people how to find you, what you specialise in or how people can benefit from using your services. If they’re already familiar with your content, you’re already a step above your competitors.

The 80/20 Rule: A Social Media Strategy for Businesses Like Yours

And that’s it. It really is that simple. But don’t go telling everyone, we can’t all be building huge armies of followers on social media.

By sticking to this rule, you’ll increase your following. People want to see content that is useful, engaging and informative so they will happily tap that follow button to see more.

The way the algorithms work means the more engagement your content has, the more people will see it. As your following increases, so will the number of interactions your post gets. Inevitably, this strategy will showcase your business to a larger audience of relevant people.

The 20% is to maximise conversions. You’ve built the following and increased engagement, now it’s time to tell them who you are and what you do. If an increase in leads is what you want from social media, this is the strategy you need to follow.

Just remember, social media marketing takes time. If you have the resources to create content and promote it that’s great… I hope you were already implementing the 80/20 rule!

If not, an agency like Digital Storm is always on hand to help. We can talk you through the process, give you content advice or fully manage your social media accounts for you. All you have to do is give us a call.

All that’s left to say is happy content creating! We’re expecting to see a lot more fun, engaging and informative content from you all now. And we will be checking…

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