The 80/20 Social Media Rule

When planning out your social media strategy there are a lot of options from which to choose. These include what you want to post, how frequently you will post, what types of social media accounts to make, and more. However you choose to use social media, it is always important to apply the 80/20 social media rule. The rule can help companies have a fair balance between different types of content. For example, 80 percent of content should be entertaining, interesting and sharable, whereas the remaining 20 percent should be all about you and your brand.


(Image retrieved: 

You may be asking yourself, “What type of content falls under the 80 percent?” The content that falls under the 80 percent is all the posts that are considered entertaining. For example personal blogs from employees, photos, informative posts and did I mention photos? A lot of fans on social media LOVE photos. You would not believe how many likes a picture of the office dog can get in a matter of minutes. It is very important to make this content filled with fun and shareable posts. Also, the 80 percent is a great way to engage and start conversations with your audience.


(Image retrieved from Bordas & Bordas Attorneys, PLLC Facebook 

The 20 percent should be mainly focused on your brand and how it can be beneficial to the audience. Anything from your services or products your company offers to informing them about a sale could fall under the 20 percent category. The over all goal of this content is to motivate your audience to learn more about your company.

The best way to find out if you are following this rule is to go through the social media content on your page and categorize it. Look at the year 2015 and make two categories: entertainment and brand. Count each post and keep a tally. From here, you can figure out the percent by taking the amount of each category and dividing it by the total of all posts. You may find that you are not exactly in the 80/20 area, but if you are close, for example 73/27, you can still give yourself a pat on the back. Of course this can be measure using social media tools as well.

If your posts are not even close to the 80/20 spectrum, you should reevaluate your social media strategy. When making the decision to create various social media accounts for your company, it is extremely important to have a plan. Whether your business chooses to hire an advertising agency to do the job, or chooses to conduct the sites yourself, you should never, ever “wing” the job. Social media is this crazy, free, and effective way of advertising and getting your product or service out there; therefore, it is important to treat it like gold and to have a strategy and goal in mind (Morgan, 2015).


*Blog previously published by Olivia Morgan on Wheelhouse Creative, LLC Blog


7 thoughts on “The 80/20 Social Media Rule

  1. This is really interesting! It makes perfect sense that followers will respond better to content that is fun and engaging rather than content that is purely informational. Anthropologie does a great job of balancing fun and engaging content with information. The photos they share on Instagram are really nice to look at. Oftentimes they don’t push followers to purchase something, and sometimes it is more of a suggestion. It definitely keeps me going back time and time again. Even if the photo doesn’t necessarily show a product, it at least catches my attention and creates more brand awareness.


  2. Yes Hannah! I am always looking to see if brands that I like are using the 80/20 rule. When they are it makes me feel confident that I am keeping up with the big brands when it comes to social media content strategies. Thanks!


  3. Olivia: This post coincides well with this week’s lesson on blog/Twitter campaigns, and is helpful to the campaign I’m currently developing for my church. I will certainly consider the 80/20 rule when posting.

    Have you heard of the “rule of thirds”? This rule suggests that content should be broken up into promotion, personal and sharing – all of which should appear 1/3 of the time.

    Do you think this is also a good rule to follow or do you favor the 80/20 guide?


    1. Hi Jessica! I am happy to hear that you are going to consider the 80/20 rule. I have heard of the rule of thirds. My boss is set on the 80/20 as of now, but I definitely plan on looking into the rule of thirds to maybe switch some things up for a change. Thanks for sharing!


  4. This is the right approach Hannah. When it comes to content marketing, it’s best to try to connect with the audience by informing, educating, and pointing out fun facts about the market field they are representing. Staying relevant to current events also works, just as your case on the Steelers. This way you ride the wave of the current trends, using it to your advantage. It’s a win-win situation!
    Best wishes,

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hello,

    I used to do a significant amount of advertising on my media accounts when I tried multi-level marketing and a few other forms of business. When I was new, I was over-ambitious and a chased a lot of friends and potential customers away by posting too much content about my products and opportunities. I received some advice from a seasoned professional and he mentioned the 80/20 rule on media accounts. By doing this, potential customers do not get annoyed and people do not unfriend you because they think you will be contacting and bugging them about joining your company.

    The person who gave me advice suggested that I even worked towards an 85/15 or 90/10 ratio on my posted content as people get to know me better and trust what I do. What do you think about this? Do you think you should increase or decrease your business content as you grow professionally or do you think you should stick to 80/20?

    Thanks for sharing,

    Kyle Holcomb


    1. Hi Kyle!

      I honestly think it depends on the business type and how well followers react to some of the content. For example, if they are pleased and building hype around your business because of content, then that particular type of content should increase.



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