Creating a Social Media Strategy
Have you decided it’s time to get serious about social media?
It really is the connection between you and your future clients. To take full advantage of this new social media world, the one rule is that you must be there.
I’ve heard it before:
- I don’t have time
- I don’t know how to use social media
- Where do I even start?
- What platforms should I use?
- I’ve tried it before and it didn’t work
Why is social media important? I want you to see that when you put the work in and use a strategy, you will see the benefits.
I’ve had several years working with small businesses and entrepreneurs mastering social media. I teach others how to manage it and how to create a strategy.
What I am going to share with you is a plan that was created and can be used to grow your business.
Time to get social!
The first thing you must do is a bit of research to clearly define the following:
- What are your social media goals?
- Who is your target market?
- Where is your target market? (which platforms?)
Now, it’s time to strategize!
Write it down….
Write down your monthly goals — create a list of things you need to share this month. What is important for you this month? This is where your goals are going to be important.
- Are you launching a new product?
- Are you hosting an event?
- Do you want to sell a certain number of products?
- Are you trying to add a certain amount of people to your list?
Your content is going to support your overall monthly social media goals. Sharing content you create as well as other people’s content that is relevant to your audience. Share different types of content such as articles, images, and videos. What you share should be something of value — educational, motivational and inspirational.
80% of your content should be valuable content and 20% should be about your business, such as promotions.
Tip 1….Create a resource list — websites where you find useful information and social media profiles
Tip 2….Create a secret board on Pinterest where you can save content that is of high quality and things you know your audience would love. Gather enough content that you can share throughout the month.
Schedule your content….
I am a big fan of Hootsuite for scheduling my content as well as my client’s. Because I manage more than 6 client’s social media, I use the paid version, but for a single business owner or small business, you can get away with using the free option. You can schedule posts for Facebook Pages, Facebook Groups, LinkedIn Profiles and Company Pages, Twitter and Instagram.
If you do decide to use Hootsuite, you can install their app Tailwind, which allows you to schedule posts to Pinterest. Another option to consider is Buffer.
Be sure you are engaging with your followers. I spend 15–20 minutes each day engaging, replying to comments, liking, sharing & retweeting. When it comes to sharing, I only share content I know my audience will like. Do I share other people’s content who are in the same industry as me? YES because they will take notice that you are sharing their content and may reach out to you to collaborate together.
What should you share….
Not all social media is created equal. Here’s what you should know — Facebook is social, Twitter is microblogging (short and sweet), LinkedIn is professional, Pinterest is visual (think of it as a visual bulletin board), and Instagram is visual and social.
Here’s some examples of type of content to share:
- Motivational Quotes (create a graphic with your logo)
- Videos (tips or training)
- Articles written by you (blog posts)
- Articles written by other people
- Freebie or offer that gets people to subscribe to your list
- Ask questions
- Promote your business (remember the 80/20 rule)
- Show the human side of your brand (behind the scenes look, family photos, etc.)
- Helpful tip
How to share your content:
- Pinterest and Instagram users want to see an image that is eye-catching
- Twitter and Facebook would be good for graphics as well as text statuses with links
- LinkedIn is good for a text status with links
- Facebook is great for video as well as Facebook Live
The big thing to remember is to create content specifically geared for the platform you are sharing to.
Also, when it comes to creating graphics, you want to make sure you are using the correct size. If you use a program such as Canva, they have the correct specs for each social media platform. If you are going to do it by yourself, like I do, then you can download this great cheat sheet I created.
What time should you post….
This does require a bit of research on your part as well as ongoing monitoring. Each platform will have different times that work as well as different days. This is why using a tool such as Hootsuite will save you a ton of time. Schedule everything at once and at the right days and times.
One thing to consider is your target audience. If you are sharing to professionals, you would probably use LinkedIn and share something at 8:00 in the morning. If you are sharing to a stay-at-home mom, you might share at night (when the kids are in bed). Knowing your audience will be very helpful in determining the best days and times to share.
If you are using Facebook, take advantage of your Insights. If you look under Posts, this will tell you the days and times your audience is on. Then you can schedule your posts for the most popular days and times right from Facebook.
When it comes to the other social media platforms, do a Google search for tools that can show you the best days and times. If you do use Hootsuite and have installed Tailwind, they will share it on the best days and times for you — no figuring on your part.
Click here to get an infographic I created about when to post on social media. Not only does it tell you what days & times that work, it also tells you how often to post on them.
PRO TIP: Plan your strategy out before the first of each month. If you know you are going to be sharing Quotes on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram, create those images and get them scheduled. If you want to change the days and times later you can. At least they are already scheduled and all you have to do is reschedule them. For instance, I share Quotes on Monday’s (#MondayMotivation) — I find or create my images and use Hootsuite to schedule them all for the month. By doing this, you will be able to focus on commenting, liking and sharing as well as engaging your followers.
I hope this helps you a bit more when it comes to your social media.
In my next blog post, I am going to talk about some social media trends for 2017.
Until then, Keep Calm & Love Social Media!
Originally published at Savvy Social Media with Michelle Arbore.