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Are you not sure where to get started with your social media marketing strategy?
Use this checklist and build your plan from the ground up. You will learn how to create attainable goals, and pitfalls to avoid, create a content strategy, and know whether your social media plan is successful.
If you follow these five steps, your business will thrive as you reach more goals and convert more consumers.
Setting clear and achievable goals gives your social media strategy a purpose and aligns your teams. To create your goals, start at the end and work backward.
What do you ultimately want to achieve? For example, you might choose increasing your brand awareness as your end goal. Then, once you choose the ultimate destination, you start filling in details such as how you can increase brand awareness on social media, what metrics to measure your success, and what timeframe you want to achieve the goal within.
Image from SproutSocial
Poor social media marketing goals are vague or unrealistic. Here are some examples of goals to avoid:
Instead, turn those goals into specific plans your teams can follow that help you achieve your business goals. Here is an example of a specific social media goal:
“Add 1,000 new followers on Instagram over the next three months through organic and paid inbound social media strategies. One thousand quality followers will increase the engagement we see on each post by 15 additional likes, shares, or comments.”
The second example gives a specific number to achieve and timeframe to achieve the goal. It also provides metrics to measure whether your efforts were successful and ties it back into your marketing goals to ensure they align with your business’s purpose.
Continually adjust your goals based on past results, so they remain attainable. Future strategies will build on your success which means your benchmarks must change to match your growth.
When developing a social media strategy plan, your marketing and sales teams should be partners. They should both give their input during the goal creation process and work towards the same results to increase your return.
When your teams work together, you have fewer wasted resources, and you can achieve more goals in less time. Businesses with aligned sales and marketing teams also see better customer retention rates and generate 209% more revenue from their marketing efforts.
Book learning and social media templates will not give you the knowledge you need to succeed. They only provide a framework for creating a social media marketing plan. What fills the gaps are specific insights from your particular audience and business.
Businesses that use data to create personalized marketing content see nearly eight times the return than those that don’t. Some vital data you need to collect about a B2C audience include:
This knowledge will guide your decisions like what channel to use, what content format resonates with your audience, when to post, and what pain points to address with your content.
The following chart from the Pew Research Center summarizes the demographic information for three of the top social media marketing platforms to aid your research.
Image from Pew Research Center
Use these methods for researching and compiling data on your audience and their behavior:
Once you have compiled that data, you can organize it into target audience personas. You should have several personas that cover different demographics and purchase motivations.
Once you have identified the channels your target audience interacts with, you can begin setting up your social media accounts to align with your social media goals and audience. While there are many platforms for social media marketing, don’t spread yourself too thin by trying to achieve a presence on all the possible channels.
The average person has 8.4 social media accounts, so many of your audiences will be on several channels you use. Instead of getting on all the social media channels at once, start with two or three and grow as your social media reach expands to avoid overwhelming your teams.
As you choose your social media channels, consider how you plan to manage your accounts. Having software is especially important when working with several different platforms. Social media software can allow you to create and publish content from one dashboard. You can even collect results and compare your reach across the other channels.
Using social media management software like SproutSocial or Hootsuite is essential in your social media strategy plan because it ensures you have a unified brand and voice across your channels.
As you fill in your information on your social account profiles and adjust your settings, optimize your content for your audience and niche. Your profile can appear in search engine results and social media searches. If you don’t use the correct settings, your audience will have difficulty finding you.
Optimizing your profile includes using industry-specific keywords, filling out all the available fields, and branding your content using the same colors, fonts, and styles to connect your accounts and make your content easily recognizable in search results.
Learn more about creating a content plan that converts:
Once you create your social media accounts, you just need to add quality content. Follow these steps to create a social media content plan to help you reach your social media marketing goals.
If your social media marketing goal is to increase the number of followers, each piece of content should have a specific purpose that will help you reach that goal. Decide on the aim of each campaign, how long it will run, and how many posts are in the campaign.
Your content goals should include specific details, like whether you are achieving them through organic methods or investing in paid advertising. They should also list metrics you will use to measure your success like engagement rate, impressions, followers, or link clicks.
The ideal number of posts per day is between one and two. You can come up with new ideas by:
Fill in a content calendar with specific topics, the goal of those topics, and when you want to publish the content to help you stay consistent with your social media campaign strategy.
While you can create a content calendar in a spreadsheet, that option isn’t scalable. Instead, streamline your content creation by using a dedicated social media calendar that tracks the progress of content creation and publication.
If you want to produce quality content–which should be your goal–you must invest in quality content creators. While your in-house marketers might have the latest iPhone, that doesn’t make them qualified to shoot footage for your social media account.
Invest in a content team and the equipment necessary for producing stellar video, images, and other content that will catch people’s eyes and provide value.
You can outsource some of your content creation by partnering with influencer marketers, brand advocates, employee advocates, and social media agencies that can help you make the content you need.
As you publish your content, continually monitor your results. Tracking your results means collecting information on how many people react to your content, what people comment, who tags your brand, and how your business’s revenue changes while campaigns run.
This data can get overwhelming if you are looking through charts of numbers. To help you use that data for improving your strategy, convert the numbers into easily digestible charts like bar graphs or line graphs. These charts will give you a bigger picture of your social media performance and help you identify patterns in your engagement.
You have the data. Now what?
Your data isn’t just to tell you whether you reached your benchmarks, though that is a huge part of tracking your performance. It also tells you what types of content perform the best.
Are your viewers primarily interested in videos? Did you get a massive response to the group shot of your business staff? These little details are what your social media marketing strategy relies on going forward. They tell you what works and what wastes your resources to ensure you only use the most effective processes.
Kubbco is a social media agency that creates strategies and content for businesses to help them achieve their marketing goals. You don’t need to guess whether you are doing social media marketing correctly. We have already been there and know the signs of success and red flags to avoid.
Contact us and create a professional and successful social media marketing plan.
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