Successful Social Media Strategy
So you want to create a social media strategy? It isn’t easy, right? Many of the social media marketers struggle to roll out an effective and practical marketing plan from the scratch. There are also others who don’t know what exactly a social media strategy is.
To put it simply, every action you take on social sites should complement the larger social media strategy. This means that every post, comment, like, retweet, or reply should all be part of the plan of the ultimate social media marketing plan. This might sound complicated, but if you want all your social efforts to flow naturally, you have to take time to create an inclusive social media strategy.
Everyone can come up with a comprehensive strategy for social media marketing if they approach it in the right manner.
This post will look into what the social media marketing plan is, and the seven steps plan for creating your own.
What Is A Social Media Strategy?
A social media strategy is a summary of all the actions that you plan to do so as to sell the business or brand products and services using the social networks. This strategy should comprise an audit of where your social media accounts are today, and the goals that you want to achieve in the near future. It should also comprise of all the tools that you intend to use to achieve your set goals.
In general, avoid having a social media strategy that is so broad and lofty that it becomes unattainable. The strategy will not only guide all your activities, but it’ll also act as a measure by which you determine your success or failures. Make sure not to set yourself up for a letdown from the onset.
Step One: Create Social Media Goals and Objectives
Have you ever embarked on a journey without knowing your destination or where you want to go? Probably not. Similarly, you can be heading in that direction if you fail to set yourself up for success in social media marketing.
The first step to creating a successful and effective social media marketing strategy is to set and understand your end goal. It is good to set challenging yet achievable and challenging goals.
Some of the examples you can consider for your social media strategy include;
- Increase overall traffic to your site by 40-50% over a year
- Influence over 30% conversion every year.
- Increase revenue from social sites by over 20% every year
The above goals are just random; they are just intended to get you have an idea of the type of goals that you can set with your strategy.
Having set definitive goals, you can now align all your plans towards achieving them.
Step Two: Know Your Target Users
You have your goals set in advance, now it’s time to start planning about who your target social media users are and who will help you achieve your social media marketing goals.
You can employ different options to identify your target audience. The first thing you can do is to take a look at your user base and try to create demographic personas based on their spending and needs and weigh whether you want to keep the current user base or aim to create a different one altogether.
However, you might not have a large social media user base to vet for your ideal audience. If you are in such a situation, don’t worry as there are various tools that you can use to see the type of audience that is gravitating towards your business or brand via your social media channels and website.
Most of the social sites offer demographic information to help you know the type of audience that follows up your social media activities the most.
But here are some of the tools that you can use to know your target audience on various social channels:
- Google Analytics– Google Analytics offers some valuable tools to help you identify and understand the location, interests, demographics, and even behaviors of the users who visits your site. Examining this data to know the customers who are converting is a great way to knowing your desired audience.
- Twitter Analytics– do you want lifestyle and demographic data on the users who are following you on Twitter? Using Twitter Analytics can provide vast information about them and help you compare your followers to the audience persona that you want. To find out whether your target users are active on Twitter, this is the option to use.
- Audience Insights/Facebook Insights– Facebook is a giant when it comes to data Kingdom and has tons of useful information on users that engage with your content, visit your blog or website, and connected to your page. Uploading an email list or installing a Facebook pixel will help you discover this useful data.
- LinkedIn Analytics– though a bit flimsy, LinkedIn analytics can be of great help to those marketers in the B2B space, as it will help you understand the kind of community that you are building and whether it fits your goals and ideal audience.
- Instagram Analytics– This is a relatively new tool and will enable you to check the demographics, location of your following, and content consumption by your following.
Leveraging data in order to know your target audience is an important step to creating a successful social media strategy.
Step Three: Conduct a Social Media Test
Having gained the basic understanding of how your social media users operate and relate to you, you can test the waters. It doesn’t matter whether you are a novice or an expert of it- we all learn from mistakes.
Conducting a social media test will help you announce your online presence. You need first to choose networks that best suits your social media goals. If you don’t have a social media profile on each site, you need to create and build them from scratch with your broader audience and goals in mind. If you have existing social media accounts, you need to refine and update them so that you can get the best possible results. Remember that each social site has a unique audience with specific needs and lifestyle and thus should be treated differently.
You can optimize your profiles so that they can increase web traffic to your sites. Also, you can cross-promote your social accounts to extend the reach of your content.
Social media profiles should be filled in all fields, and text and images should be optimized for the social channel in question.
Having set up or refined your account, you now need to connect with people you may know. Social media marketing is all about connections; you cannot make it in social media marketing if you have zero connections. You can also increase your connections by “following,” or “friend requesting” or connecting with whatever mechanism the site has, to interact and connect with people of certain interest.
For instance, you can join groups that are related to your field of interest; if you are selling SEO services, you can join a group of entrepreneurs or local small business. By connecting with someone whom you have a common interest, it will be easier for them to endorse or work with you.
Having identified your target audience and connected with them on their preferred network, you can invite them to join your email list so that they can connect with you.
Be creative in your email list invitation; for instance, you can inform them that you discovered something interesting that can benefit all of you. If they want to interact with you so as to know what it is, they need to sign up so that you can share the secret with them. Your goal at this point is to create and start building connection
Step Four: Create Consistent Content That Your Audience Can Relate To
Did you know that the current number of daily active users on Facebook is more than the number of people who existed in 1901? (https://zephoria.com/top-15-valuable-facebook-statistics/). The gap between the amounts of content published and the amount of content consumed on social channels is rapidly widening. To ensure that your content suits your audience you need to have a diverse content strategy. To make your content reach and engage your audience in the best way possible, here are several tips you can integrate into your content strategy;
- Ensure that the content is readable– this is much obvious. People are going to read information that is digestible and readable. By creating valuable content that is promoted properly across social media channels, you’ll definitely attract customers to your site. But to keep them you have to post content that is readable and digestible.
- Ensure that you integrate compelling visuals in your content. 90% of the information sent to the brain is visual, and the human mind processes visuals at 60,000 times faster than text. To win over your target users, you need to create compelling visuals for your content. However, this doesn’t mean hiring a graphic designer, although it is encouraged. There are amazing sites that can help you create fun, engaging, and attractive social graphics.
- Video capabilities. Videos are gaining popularity on social media platforms and therefore integrating videos into your content can introduce a fun or in-depth approach to the concept you are delivering. You don’t have to take expensive video. A video taken with an iPhone and uploaded to your platform of your choice will get more engagement than the other visuals such as images.
- Podcast integration– Podcast popularity has increased in the recent past and will most likely continue growing. Current statistics reveal that close to 17 percent of the Americans listen to podcasts monthly.
Once you come up with fun, engaging yet informative piece of writing, your content will get shares on a regular basis.
Step Five: Automate Some of the Process
If you want to succeed in your social media strategy, you have to find a way to achieve your goals. One of the key things that will guarantee your social media success is consistency. You need to be consistent in the time you post your content and other activities that you engage in on social sites
To achieve this, you need to have a system that will help you stay on track. Determine the things that you should automate and those that require manual processes.
You can use tools that post content automatically at specified times.
You can also develop messages that you’ll be using to interact with your customers. You can curate two or three messages or have a template that you can be using.
There is nothing wrong with using some of your competitor’s successful templates. However, try to create original messages as that will help you curate a unique and authentic brand choice.
Step Six: Be Flexible With Your Tactics
Unless you are a celeb, social media success doesn’t come in an overnight. It takes time to establish yourself as an authoritative and influential personality, build a significant following, and start seeing tangible results.
You’ll need to redefine your tactics and experiment some of them so as to find the right combination of content, channels, and automation that works for your audience.
With time, you’ll be able to adjust your content, personas and recipe card based on the information that you are gathering. This will help you fine-tune your strategy so that you can generate more significant and consistent results.
Step 7: Allocate a Dedicated Budget for Your Social Media Strategy
To see consistent results from social media and reach your target audience, it is highly recommended to have a set budget for social media marketing.
The marketing budget for social media marketing is expected to rise in future, and therefore you should invest well in your social advertising. When used wisely, social media marketing is absolutely the most cost-effective way to reach out to your targeted audience in the platform they interact most.
Successful Social Media Strategy – Our Final Thoughts
Social media channels are one of the best avenues you can use to increase your website traffic and conversion rates. Therefore, take time to come up with a comprehensive, suitable, and ample social media strategy to reap the maximum benefit of social media marketing.
Keep on tracking and analyzing your target audience as their needs and desires keep on changing.
Remember: A great social media strategy is never anchored on a stone; it is a work in progress that keeps on changing. So create a strategy and start implementing it as you continue to learn more about your audience and business.