Your social media strategy is what is going to separate you from the average user who just tweets, shares, and comments whenever they feel like it. Without a plan you’re no better than a ditzy teenager cruising around looking for someone to troll – you need to build a social media strategy if you truly want to reach a focused goal.
Here are the steps I’d recommend you take to see who you are as a marketer, and what you want to accomplish. With that sorted, your social media strategy will start to become apparent!
You need to figure out what’s working with your current social media strategy, and what isn’t getting you closer to your goals. You’re going to have to look at the numbers to figure this out.
Take a look at a focused time frame for your posts and shares – 3 months, 6 months, a year. You can do this the hard way by slugging it through the API of each social media website, or you can use some of these social media traffic tools:
I can’t tell you which of those four is most important to your business as each business has different goals. What you’ll be looking for when you use these tools will be the same: Which pieces of content you’ve shared get the most traffic that make sales.
As with all things in marketing, your competition are your surest signs of your ability to compete. If your social account follower numbers are far, far below those of a competitor on one social media website you know where your weakness is. Focusing your social marketing strategy on correcting your weaknesses through competitor analysis can get you on level with, and then crushing, your competition.
You don’t have to build your social media strategy for nothing. Many businesses in your industry are already succeeding. Learn from the successes, and failures, of the social media strategy to narrow your learning curve.
Marketing on social media isn’t so much about having a perfect content plan full of the most exciting information. It’s about having a plan for content that your audience will enjoy, and ensuring that audience is right for your sales goals.
The first point is an important part of your social media strategy as you’ll have to determine if you need to create more content that grows an audience, and the type of calls to action that make that happen.
The second aspect of your audience size is do you have a large enough audience to sustain your social proof? A smart social media strategy may be to boost your audience numbers with a Twitter follower, YouTube Subscriber, or Pinterest Follower package that boosts your numbers up high enough to convince new potential audience members that you’re worth paying attention to.
The second point is going to look at the type of content you need to create to continue growing your audience while still making sales. It can be a delicate balance as social media users want to feel like they’re part of a conversation with a brand – not like they’re part of a target audience. If you need a point to start from, the 80/20 rule is a good beginning point.
Mobile devices are being used more and more often to read content on social media websites. Taking the time to specifically address this need, rather than leaving it as a general part of the plan, is the way of the future. The way that people consume media on their desktop/laptop is very different from how they consume it on their smartphone/tablet.
Mobile isn’t just a nice bonus anymore, it’s an essential part of a successful social media strategy.
Not every brand on social media has been a wild success. Those that have failed have done so for any number of reasons:
The list could go on and on. The end strategy of every brand will be different. How you arrive at your best social media strategy, however, will be the same. Any brand can follow this guide and start creating the best content possible for their audience, and start seeing true ROI from their social media marketing.
Feature image credit to Sergey Peterman / Shutterstock