Social media is the most widely used marketing channel of today. This makes it vital, but its effectiveness still depends on how well you execute your social media marketing plan. Creating this plan can take a lot of time if you want to do it properly. We’ve come up with eight must-do steps that will facilitate this challenge and help you get the brand out there.
1. Find Out Where You Are
Before you do anything about your social media strategy, find out where you are. What is your current social media presence? Which of your current strategies work and which don’t?
‘’To make a plan that works, first you need to eliminate the errors. If errors are still existent in your social media marketing strategy, no effort you’ll make can yield the results you wish for.’’ – explains Tom Davis, marketing expert at AssignmentGeek.
So, before you proceed with any social media plan or step in this list, audit the following:
- The networks where you promote your brand
- How well you’ve optimized those networks
- The success and appearance of your social media profiles as compared to those of the competition
2. Identify the Ideal Audience
This step is a must for your social media marketing plan since naturally, your strategies should attract the right audience to your business. When the time comes to build a social media presence for your business or brand, you need to know who you are trying to reach. Having this information will tell you how to reach them and what to do to keep them interested. That’s the only way to convert the audience into leads and followers.
Your second step is to find something called the buyer persona. This is an avatar for your target customer, based on which you can build your social media marketing strategy. When identifying the buyer persona, think of age, most used social media networks, time of use of these networks, frequency of use, location, etc.
3. Choose the Channels
Getting your business on every channel available on the Web can be tempting, but it is not right. The right idea is to start with one or two channels and focus on those. If you create profiles on too many channels, you’ll be splitting your focus to many places. This is very time-consuming and in most cases, causes your marketing strategies to fail.
Instead of trying to get everywhere, choose the channels based on where your target persona hangs. Use the very specific approaches for posting and managing those channels. After all, you can’t use the same approaches for every social media platform – it is simply not the way it goes.
4. Create Engaging SEO Content
Content is where your true powers lie. You shouldn’t just jump to this step without going through the other steps first, but when you come to it, make sure to dedicate a great deal of time and attention to this important step.
The content is what the target audience sees before they convert into leads. The more engaging it is, the higher are the odds of this happening. If you fail to create good content, all your previous steps will go to waste. You won’t really achieve anything if you attract the target audience, but lose them because of the bad content.
When we say content, we don’t just mean any kind of content. Different social media platforms demand different approaches and different use of content. You need to tweak your message for the target audience and the platform you post on, which is as challenging as it is important.
If you can’t handle this part, better leave it in the hands of professionals. Cheap services like AssignmentMasters are a very popular choice among those who need help with content curation.
5. Create a Good Content Strategy
Your job with the content is only half finished when you have it ready to publish. To actually get following and readership, you don’t just need great content and quality photos or videos. You need a good content strategy, too.
When you’re planning your content strategy, think of times to post the content, frequency of posting, social media platforms for each content type, amount of content you share, etc.
Buffer and SumAll’s research have published the results of a research that should help you determine the optimal frequency for content posting. According to them, you should post less than three times a day on Twitter, two times per day on Facebook, and one or two times a day on Instagram. As for your blog, the ideal frequency is twice a week.
Of course, this is just a guide as to what best works on social media and in terms of content. You should definitely watch and track your audience and their preferences and tweak the strategy based on what works best for them. You might need to change these numbers to more or less, so test out different strategies before you find the perfect one for your specific content.
6. Track and Analyze
Tracking your plan’s success is one of the most important steps and one that you should be practicing all the time. You can’t just analyze your plan once and keep forcing it onto the target audience for years to come. Trends change, and so should your marketing strategies.
If you evaluate all the steps you take continuously, you can detect your social media marketing errors before they cause too much damage and make you lose followers and leads. You can use the analysis to improve and tweak your strategy accordingly since, after all, you can’t just create a social media plan based on statistics and trends. Social media marketing is a work in progress, and in order to optimize it, you need to constantly track how well you are doing.
7. Schedule the Posts
You won’t always have the time to write the content, so you’ll probably have someone else write it for you. But, what happens when you don’t have the time to post the content, especially since you need to do this on several platforms and at different times of the day?
With the advances in technology, the options for scheduling your content ahead are numerous. All you have to do is choose a tool to schedule the posts for the ideal time and their intended social media channels, and focus on the other tasks you have while automation does its job for you.
There’s no need to rush to post on social media at a set time, or track a calendar to remember when and where you should post next. Invest in a tool for social media management – it’s the best you can do for your strategy.
8. Make Use of All Those Tools
The scheduling tool is helpful, but there’s much more to social media marketing than just posting or curating content. To make all of this easier for you, make use of the many tools available to marketers for this purpose. Use tools to track and analyze the progress of your strategy, schedule the content, manage the team, recycle and repurpose old posts, reach your target audience, etc. Your options are limitless.
The Bottom Line
As you probably know already, a social media marketing strategy isn’t simple and never really ends. However, the process can either be very challenging and mixed up, or organized and simplified for you. By following these eight steps, you can create a social media marketing plan and execute it with ease. All it takes is a bit of dedication and persistence, and you can turn social media into the greatest tool you have to promote your brand and attract leads.
Alexandra Reay is an editor and professional writer for college paper. She is also a professional content writer who prefers to do research on the following topics - self-improvement, technology innovations, global education development ets. Meet her at Twitter.