In this post, we’ll talk about How to Create a Social Media Strategy?
It’s no secret that social media is a powerful tool for marketing. But, if you’re like most business owners, you don’t have time to figure out how to use it effectively. You know you need to be on social media, but you don’t know where to start.
To help you create your own strategy, here are seven great ways to get on board without draining the life out of you.
1. Set Goals for Your Social Media Success
Before you can begin creating a social media marketing plan, you need to set goals for your business. Before you post anything at all, figure out what success on social media looks like to you and your business.
For example: do you want more traffic to your website or more followers on Instagram? Do you want to encourage people to share their thoughts about your products in social media reviews?
Once you’ve set goals for what success looks like, create a list of the platforms where you think it’s likely to happen. For example, for more traffic to your website, you might want to focus on building an audience on Facebook and Twitter (both of which are excellent for driving traffic).
2. Create Your Content Strategy
No matter what goal you’re trying to reach with social media, content is the key. You want people to engage with your posts, recommend your products to their friends, and take action. To do that, you need good content.
Start by identifying the types of content that are likely to encourage engagement on each platform. On Twitter, where you can only post 140 characters at a time, it’s important to be concise. You’ll probably want to tweet things like news, fun facts, and responses to current events. But on Facebook or Instagram, where people have more time to read your updates, you can get away with higher-quality content.
Once you’ve identified the types of content that are likely to perform well on each platform, create a schedule for creating your posts. If you’re going to post about current events on Twitter, for example, you’ll need to know ahead of time when major news is likely to break and be ready to post it then.
3. Use Analytics and Monitoring Tools
While creating a content schedule sounds like a nice idea, in theory, the truth is that social media moves really fast. You don’t have time to sit down every day and create posts for each platform.
Social media is also broad, so you need to keep track of conversations that are relevant to your business. If you’re creating a social media strategy for your restaurant, you’ll want to monitor hashtags like #dinner, #lunch, and #food.
In addition to hashtags, you’ll want to monitor your competitors’ social media activities by using tools like Social Mention or Talkwalker. These tools will help you keep track of what’s being said about your industry and your business. Using alerts on these platforms will also let you know when people are rooting for you, giving a shoutout, or sharing your content.
4. Explore the Content Creation Tools
Now that you’ve created a content schedule and identified the tools you’re going to use, it’s time to choose the actual tools themselves. To help you, we put together this list of seven essential social media marketing tools, but there are hundreds more out there.
Before you pick tools for your business, make sure they fit into your budget. Some of the most popular social media management tools, like Buffer and Hootsuite, are paid (though you can use them for free if you’re willing to deal with ads). Others are completely free.
5. Promote Your Content
Whether it’s paid or not, choosing the right tools for your social media marketing strategy is only part of the battle. Once you’ve created good content, you’ll have to promote it on social media.
Promoting your posts means sharing them more than once. And while that might seem daunting—if you’re just one person trying to keep up with several accounts—there are lots of ways to make the process manageable.
To keep your social media promotion from feeling too repetitive, take advantage of scheduling tools like Buffer and Hootsuite. Scheduling tools let you write a bunch of posts at once, then automatically share them multiple times throughout the day or week. These tools will save you time, so you can concentrate on creating great content.
While scheduling tools are great for saving time, they also have another advantage. Even if you only have five minutes to spare one day, you can still update your followers with fresh posts.
6. Analyze Your Efforts
It’s tough to keep track of what works and what doesn’t work on social media. But thanks to analytics, you can figure out what’s working in a split second.
There are a lot of free analytics tools out there, and most social media platforms have their own in-house analytics programs. If you want to go beyond the basics, however, check out these more advanced analytical options.
Any way you slice it, analyzing your social media efforts is key for improving your strategy. If you’re not tracking metrics, there’s no way to know if what you’re doing actually works. You could be putting in a ton of hard work with no return on investment.
7. Adapt Your Strategy
Even if you’ve created the perfect social media marketing strategy, you can’t just follow it step-by-step for the rest of the time. Social media is constantly evolving, and as a result, so should your business’s social media marketing strategy.
To keep up with trends on social media, make sure to follow influencers in your industry. Keep an eye on what they’re saying—and how they’re saying it. Unless you keep up with social media, your strategy could quickly become irrelevant.
So take this advice, and check out these tips on how to improve your social media strategy. And don’t forget to subscribe to the Caterer blog for more small business marketing strategies—and tasty content-marketing snacks!