So you appreciate the importance of a social media strategy, but do you have one? If you do, is it working effectively?
We understand that, for SME’s, time is valuable, so it might feel like you don’t have enough time to dedicate to social media. Do you think of delivering a social media strategy as a lengthy process? Well it doesn’t have to be! Allocating 30 minutes (or less) at the start of every day to deliver your social media strategy can save time and help you achieve your goals. Here’s our top tips to help you do just that:
1. Business Objectives
This forms the first part of your social media strategy. If you don’t already know your business goals, then it’s a good idea to spend some time determining what these are and how they will fit into your social media strategy. Your business objectives will help to define what and where you post.
2. Social Media Goals
A goal is something that’s measurable. Make sure you set goals that tie in to your business objectives. For example, if increasing brand awareness is an objective, then increasing reach and engagement should be a goal.
3. Audience, Channel Choice and Tactics
These three elements will be sub-headings in your social media strategy and inform your overall content plan.
Be aware that different people spend time on different platforms. If you’re unsure about the typical users for each platform, then have a look at some infographics or articles about platform demographics.
Knowing your current and desired audience will help determine the channels that your brand is present on. We always recommend to do one thing well, then when you feel comfortable with that, start to branch out on to different channels. When considering channel choice, think about where your desired audience will be (this is where your demographic research will be useful).
Once you have defined your audience and channel choice, the next thing to think about are tactics. Things to think about when identifying tactics are:
4. Tools, Resources and Assets
This part is all about making your life easier! Scheduling tools can make a big difference to your social media strategy, especially if your time is limited. At Naturally Social, we love Hootsuite for scheduling and monitoring content. For more information on free social media resources see our previous blog post.
5. Content Plan
If you’re creative, then you’re going to love this part. This is where you plan what you’re going to post on what channel. Consider channel demographics and what sort of content your audience will find appealing.
Your content plan is where you consider what, where and how content will be shared. Stuck for ideas? Here’s a couple of things you can think about:
- Awareness days
- Business events, activities and milestones.
Awareness days are designed to create conversation around topics of interest. Try searching for upcoming awareness days that relate to your business and create content around this. It’s likely that these topics will be trending online.
If you have any business milestones, such as 5 years in business, or special events coming up, such as an awards evening, then don’t be afraid to shout about it! You can plan content for these in advance and upload posts in the lead-up to the big day.
6. Measuring and Reporting
This part is great if you’re a logical person and one of your strengths is analysing data. Compare the performance of content across different platforms and look at the output. Consider the time of day you’re posting and the format of your content. Metrics/KPI’s you should consider in order to determine what is going well and what adjustments may be needed include:
This is a task that you’re probably familiar with outside of creating a social media strategy. Remember that your budget doesn’t necessarily dictate the quality of your content, or the success of your strategy. Yes, being able to spend money on ads that target your audience can help, but don’t be dissuaded if you don’t have a big marketing budget. Some of the most effective campaigns we’ve executed for clients didn’t rely on big budgets.
8. Crisis Plan
Don’t worry, this isn’t as scary as it sounds. Effectively, it’s a just-in-case measure. Think about things that could happen online which might affect your brand’s reputation. Even the best businesses get the occasional negative review and this is something that you might want to consider in your crisis plan. When we deliver training days, we tell our delegates that a negative response should always be acknowledged. Your crisis plan should dictate how you acknowledge it. A crisis plan will also help if multiple people are responsible for your organisation’s social media. It’s a guide for what to do in the (unlikely) event of a mishap, so that it can be dealt with quickly and effectively by any member of staff.
9. Brand Persona Guide and Voice
This is an aside to your strategy. Things to consider are your brand colours – while your content will be slightly varied across different platforms, brand colours help to keep things unified and create a strong brand image. You might also want to consider tone of voice as this could change slightly depending on what channel you’re posting on. If you’re looking to insource expertise for your branding, we recommend Rin Hamburgh & Co.
Thank you for reading this blog post, we hope that, if you’re a start-up or SME, it has shown you how to save time and use your social media more effectively. Remember that taking 30 minutes to deliver your social media strategy can make all the difference. If you’d like further help with the topics we discussed in this post, then our next social media strategy workshop is on 16th July.