In the first part of this series I wrote a detailed blueprint on how to go about creating a social media strategy. If you haven’t read it yet I suggest you read Social Media Strategy Part 1! If you have already created a strategy based on Part 1 that’s awesome! You have got yourself a rough template to work with and have put yourself at an advantage. The likely hood of your social media plan being successful just shot up. In this part of the series I will cover how to further develop and customize your social plan to ensure success. To make it easy I am going to use the same template I used in Part 1.
A. Targeting your Target Market
If you know who your target market is already and have done research you are a step ahead of the game. Like I said in the previous article, this is going to make your life a heck of a lot easier and save a lot of time and energy on your end. You’re now in a position where you can focus your efforts on a specific group of people who want and need your product/service.
Now that you’ve written out your strategy it should look similar to something to the template below. I created a shorter version here for you to better understand what type of info you will need to enhance your strategy. The template’s info listed below should only be used as a guide. Some of the info listed below may not be suitable for your social media strategy due to the fact that brands, B2C and B2B have different target audiences and posting times. This is why I strongly encourage sufficient research be done to specify your target audiences and posting times.
Who are you targeting?
- Small businesses
- Social Media Professionals
Where does the client or consumer look for similar info or products?
- Popular publications for social media professionals, small businesses (both local and non-local) and entrepreneurs
- Social media channels: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Youtube
What are they’re goals?
To integrate social media into their business by:
- Introducing social media marketing into their current marketing model
- Brand awareness
- Providing quality content
- Strong online customer or client engagement
Which social networking sites do they use and are most popular among your audience?
What are the peak times and peak hours your audience is interacting on their preferred social media network?
For Facebook, traffic hits a peak between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m.The best time on the social network is Wednesday at 3 p.m.
The best time to post on Twitter is Monday through Thursday between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. The worst time is after 3 p.m. on Friday.
The best time to post on LinkedIn is Tuesday through Thursday, when professionals are either beginning or finishing their workday.
What are the preferred industry publications or sites associated with the product or business?
- Entrepreneur Magazine
- Social Media Examiner
- Social Media Today
What are the issues that consumers or clients are faced with?
- Digitally unsavvy team
- Don’t have the time
- Can’t afford it
- Lack of content
What are the physical locations where you can find your target market?
- Networking events
B. Setting your Goals
I assume that you have already written down your social media goals or at least have a better idea of what they are. If you haven’t already, prioritize them. I do this usually by thinking what I need done first to launch my social platform and what I will need to do after starting it.
- Decide which media platforms to use and focus on platforms that showcase the majority of your market.
- Develop valuable & compelling content.
If you are a small business just starting out I highly suggest that you start with Facebook first seeing how about 67% of internet users use Facebook. Secondly, if you are looking to start up another social media channel use one where you can really reach your audience. For example, you may want to use Twitter but if you’re a clothing brand Instagram and/or Pinterest is a better choice for you.
Now, I’ve got some good news, because you made a list of all the publications, sites and networks where you can find most of your consumers. It will be a lot easier for you to generate content and think of ideas for posts. If you follow these publications (just a few if you have a big list) you will be up to date on the latest news and trends within your target market’s industry. This puts you in a great position because you’ll find that consumers will start coming to you.
- Develop social media presence: Facebook fans, Twitter, LinkedIn connections and Youtube viewers
Engage with users, participate in discussions and provide valuable content to followers.
- Follow social media analytics.
It is very important to follow your progress from when you first start and on. Why? Because this gives you a way to measure what works and what doesn’t. Also this gives you the opportunity to really get to know your customers and provide a better service to them.
- Brand awareness & Sharing key messaging.
It is important that your company develops a ‘voice’ and ‘tone’ that your audience can identify with.
- Network and connect with other professionals and entrepreneurs.
When connecting and networking online it’s important to also network in person. Although technology is connecting us more and more it still doesn’t beat meeting someone in person.
7. Track ROI (Return on Investment)
C. Producing Attractive & Shareable Content
How exciting were half way to the execution stage! Now let’s figure out exactly how you’re going to deliver your content and attract consumers to your product or service. Note: Keep in mind that while writing your content you should always give something of value to the client or consumer.
- Create Facebook content, compile images/videos for posts to increase following
- Create Twitter content, clickable links and photos in order to drive traffic to website
- Create engaging & valuable videos for Youtube i.e. Video describing product or service, How – to tutorial, Q&A etc.
- Harness LinkedIn to establish brand and promote product within professional community
While creating content it would be a good idea to check out what your consumers are reading for the list of publications & sites that they go to for info. In regards to Youtube it’s also a good idea to check out your competitors and see what they are doing. However remember it’s important that you create original content and videos that represent your company and product NOT your competitors.
D. Use other Social Media Strategies to Help Increase Your Reach
There are tons of different ways to increase your reach but you should definitely focus first on the list of goals you’ve made and prioritized. Focus on the ones that will give you the greatest ROI and social media presence online. When you have completed these goals we can look at what other businesses do to boost their social media reach even more.
Amplifying Your Social Media Reach
If you’d like to increase your social media reach you can include these ideas within your strategy:
- Media buying and social advertising for Facebook, Twitter and Youtube.
- Implementing a promotion or contest on Facebook or Twitter which requires registration with email address.
This is an awesome way to kick start building your email list. Social media is a great tool that enables you to connect with a consumer but when you have a consumer’s email you are able to directly connect to them and not have to depend on posting times or Facebook’s algorithm.
- Create and develop company blog
If your interested in starting your own blog, check out this article on “How to Create an Awesome Blog”
- Drive traffic to website, blog and social channels.
To really leverage social media you know to post valuable info but it is important that at least 20% of your posts are referring back to either an article on your blog or website. This is how you will get people to follow your blog, bring traffic to both your blog and website and of course sell your product or service to the consumer.
E. Social Media ROI – Basic things that you should track
- Keep track of user engagement!
- The size of your social media audience on all social media platforms
- Keep track of Facebook shares
- Keep track retweets
- Keep track of website and blog traffic
- Keep track of your sales before, during and after a social media campaign i.e – contest or discount sale on your product or service
Listed above are the basic KPI’s that you should track and measure for your social media channels. As time goes on you might want to focus more on in depth metrics in regards to your audience, which is awesome because that means you are really beginning to understand and know your consumer. That my friend is one of the main reasons why companies are not only successful but why they make a large amount of profit from the product or services they provide.
If you are thinking or are already in the process of designing a social media strategy what have you learned so far and what are the challenges you are encountering? We would love to here from you so comment below!