T here really is no way around it, social media is important for a business’s success. It directly contributes to improving customer relationships, increasing brand awareness, website and referral traffic, impacting sales, legitimizing your business, and leveraging your positioning on search engines. Of the social media services we specialize in, one we get asked about often is a strategy. You and your team realize it’s important and has tried your turn at posting or engaging with customers, but got lackluster results. Now you’ve decided to do something differently, but where do you start?
We feel your pain, so we’ve condensed some tested efforts and nifty brainstorming you can do in under 60 minutes to get you started.
Brainstorming: Choosing The Right Social Media Networks
The first step in creating a useful social media strategy on your own or with your social media agency will entail choosing the right social networks. You can figure out which ones are important by reviewing the demographics and interests of your target audience or personas. Where can you find some of this information? Well, if you have a Facebook page or Instagram business account, ‘Insights’ will show you information on the gender, age, and location of your followers. If you’re ahead of the curve, you can find demographics data in google analytics (if you have enabled this option.) Are your followers global or local? Do they love fashion or staying up to date on news? Or are your followers more personally connected to your life? Instagram is great for image posts and a younger audience, Facebook is great for causes and local events, while twitter is ideal for trending commentary. Really look at how your audience interacts on the networks you are considering and see where your business services fit in.
You Are What You Share
On Social Media.
Strive To Provide Content
That You Can Relate To.
Narrowing It Down: Social Media Management
Once you’ve selected your top networks, determine how many you can successfully manage with the tools and resources that you have. Social platforms like Instagram are amazing for products and promotions, but currently, you can’t schedule automatically posting, so, if you can’t remember to post on time, then it will fall through the cracks. The following are questions to get you started, seriously write these answer down, or tweet them, whatever works:
- Are you a writer or like to create images?
- Do you have a team member that would passionately create content that your target audience would really appreciate?
- How much time do you have in a week to dedicate to content creation?
- Do you respond right away to comments or do you go days without logging in?
If you’re not that socially inclined, that’s ok! You can create a content schedule that adds value to your audience’s life while keeping in touch a few days out of the week. Keep in mind, with this approach your content needs to be of high quality because you’re replacing the number of posts. There are many ways to handle interactions, depending on your resources and your desired goals.
Matchmaking: Your Expertise & Your Social Media Audience
You’ve made it to the last phase of your social media strategy creation. It is important to know what you are using your social media for and what success will look like for you.
- Plan your content calendar and schedule. Determine your topics and subtopics, what platforms they will be posted on, what days and time during the week they will be posted, and how often you will check to respond. Make sure someone is accountable for implementing the schedule.
- Planning imagery and content curation. For content curation ideas (ahem, sharing content that you did not write for relevance and relationship-building) you can set up google alerts for your selected topics and relevant links will go directly into your inbox every day or use a tool like Swayy. Planning monthly infographics or purchasing a Shutterstock subscription will go a long way in making your posts successful.
The options for being successful on social media are endless, but starting small, defining your expectations, planning, and analyzing your results will go a long way in getting the awareness and traffic your business needs.
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