6 Steps to an Actionable Social Media Marketing Plan
Category: Social Media
Social media is way too important to be ignored or pushed aside, and still, so
many businesses online can’t manage to organize and do it right. Just being “present” on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, and other popular social networks, is far from enough to actually achieve the desired results for your business in acquired new customers and/or generated sales leads.
To attract and engage with your social following you need a solid, goal-oriented, actionable social media marketing plan that you can follow. Your fans and target market will recognize and appreciate the organized approach.
Creating such a plan can be quite daunting, particularly for those who are brand new to social media, and are just interested in finding a simple, straightforward way to start from scratch. If that’s what you need, just follow the steps below:
#1 Know what your goals are.
Knowing where you want to be is half of the work to get there. Define the purpose of your business being present on social media.
Is it building your brand so people would recognize your name and offering? Maybe you want more engaged audience that promotes you to their friends when talking about your business? Do you want greater traffic to your social accounts and company website in order to attract new customers? Or maybe you want to additionally support your sales by helping your followers with valuable information on how they can use and benefit from your products and services.
Be specific, and set measurable and realistic goals.
#2 Identify your KPIs.
Once you know your goals, you can easily identify the metrics you need to follow to measure your progress towards those goals, as well as set your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). That is how success looks to you in quantifiable terms. And also how you learn to improve.
When creating your social media strategy make sure to consider your KPIs in details, the profiles of your audience, the content themes, your campaign concepts, promotions and contests, crisis management, and so on.
#3 Who do you want to engage with on social media?
Define your target audience on social media. Know their demographics, psychographics, what activities and interests are they most social about. Understand their unique characteristics and behavior, where these people spend most of their time, what incentives make them act, who influences them to buy.
The better you know your target market, the easier it will be for you to connect with them and achieve your business goals.
#4 Provide basic information about your business on every major social network. But prioritize the same sites as your audience.
Get your business on the main social platforms to secure your name and brand, as well as provide helpful guidance for the people who visit, in terms of phone and email contact, maps of your stores and offices, working hours, link to your company website, and more.
Don’t spread yourself too thin though, but focus your efforts on three to four sites that generate the greatest results and bring you closer to achieving your goals. Build awareness, create engagement and brand ambassadors where the fans you want are active.
#5 Select your core topics for social content.
The way to engagement is top quality content. Analyze what works best with your particular audience and see if that fits the kind of engagement you want for your business. Select several “hot” topics that you want to rank for, and brainstorm relevant content ideas around these categories that you can later cover.
Your business blog is a great source of valuable, sharable content that answers your fans’ and followers’ questions and concerns. Visual content is much more effective on social media, so make sure to explore a variety of formats in your conversations and updates, – images, GIFs, infographics, short videos, – and test for better performance.
Don’t share the same messages on every social network. Consider the specifics of the channel. What works on Twitter may not on Pinterest, and vice versa.
#6 Measure your results and reanalyze your social media plan on a regular basis.
There’s a pretty useful analytics tool with every major social site that provides essential information on your business’ performance there. Follow your KPIs and other metrics, and remember to put them in proper context when analyzing, to get more accurate results.
When something isn’t working, refine your plan accordingly, measure and A/B test two versions simultaneously to see which one is more successful.
Subscribe for reports on your key metrics every week, month, two months, depending on your goals and desired results.
Over to you.
How do you drive social engagement around your business and brand? Share your thoughts and secret tactics in the comments below. Let’s discuss…