Seven Simple Steps to create a Social Media Strategy
Social media has become an integral part of life and business. Long gone are the days when businesses used social media for mere presence. Today, social media has a wide array of uses for businesses some of which are interactions, advertisement, and brand visibility just to name a few. True to this, today, social media has become the new way by which businesses measure their social success and in extension their popularity and success. This makes social media a key part of any business growth and development, and like every key aspect of any business, a social media plan, or strategy is necessary to ensure the success of the endeavor regardless of why the business entity decides to use social media. Creating this document (the social media strategy document) is not a walk in the park; most businesses regardless of size are stuck at this point. To help you out, I have compiled a list of the top seven steps you need to create a simple but vibrant social media strategy.
1-Determine your Objective
The first step to creating a social media marketing strategy is clearly defining your objective. You can do this by answering the following two questions.
- How do you intend to use social media to help your business?
- What is your goal in using social media?
Your objective needs to be achievable, concrete, and measurable. What do we mean by this? It means that if your current social media page gathers only 5-10 leads (likes) per month, setting a goal of 50,000 is unrealistic and unattainable. Some of the objectives that most small businesses and entrepreneurs identify with are building a brand, attracting new customers, supporting sales and engaging current and new clientele. Setting objectives for your social media strategy sets markers that you can use to define your SMM (social media metrics).
2-Determine your Target Audience
Determining your target audience is the next step in creating a social media strategy. You need to determine who and which demographic you want to engage with on social media. This is very important majorly because, different demographics respond differently to different marketing strategies. Having your target demographic in mind as you create your social media marketing plan will help you understand their views and what they are most likely to do while they are online (the type of content they are interested in). The more insight you have into your target audience, the easier it shall be to engage with them and influence their opinion.
3-Choose your Topic and research it thoroughly
Your topics are your hot buttons. Ideally, you should target three to five main topics. These topics should ideally be topics with keywords that can help you rank better on search engines. After you have identified these topics, you need to create hot content around this topic. It is also important to do a lot of research before you or your social media team starts writing this content.
4-Stake your claim
Staking a claim on your social media turf means you have to create a presence across all social media platforms. If you cannot manage to establish a presence in all social platforms, you should aim to be in at least three. Securing your name is very essential to your social media strategy, especially if there is competition in your field where a competitor may grab a name or handle before you do. While thinking about a name, you should also think in the lines of branding, whether or not the name is something recognizable and identifiable with your brand.
5-Setting a social media marketing budget and your resources
Allocate your resources and budget accordingly. You need to understand that it is impossible to do it all. You cannot place an indefinite promotion ad. You need to allocate the resources you have in accordance with your operating budget. Additionally, you need to define who will handle what in the strategy.
6-Set your benchmarks and limits
Every budget has its limit. Step 6 is to create limits for your social media strategy. You need to answer these questions:
- How much time will you spend on social media?
- Which social media platform will you concentrate on?
- At what times will you post content?
- How will you measure the success of your strategy? Etc.
Additionally, you should set limits to your budget. Step 5 was all about setting a budget; however, it is important to note that your budget should have a low and high margin. Step 6 is where you set that limit.
This is the final stage of creating a social media strategy. After you have gone through step 1-6, you need to reflect upon your success, root out what is not working, and tweak what is working to work better.
You should set a feasible time to test out your strategy (a couple of months is ok). During that time, implement the strategy without fail and do not get tempted to change it midway otherwise; you will mess up the whole strategy.
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