Social media is crucial to the success of any company’s digital marketing strategy. Despite this, brands of all kinds and sizes are not using this tool to its full potential. Although the number of “follows”, “likes” and “shares” is still important, the credibility of a brand is distinguished by far more than just this. Today, social media requires a unique set of skills whereby brands need to fully understand the needs of their audience. To help you out, I’ve put together 8 Social Media Marketing Strategy you need to implement this year, whether you are a young entrepreneur or a well-established brand.
How to create a Social Media Marketing Strategy
Step 1. Choose social media marketing goals that align to business objectives
The first step to creating a winning strategy is to establish your objectives and goals. Without goals, you have no way to measure success and return on investment (ROI).
Each of your goals should be:
This is the S.M.A.R.T. goal framework. It will guide your actions and ensure they lead to real business results.
Step2. Research your target audience
Making assumptions is a dangerous game for marketers.
And thanks to the sheer wealth of demographic data and social media analytics tools out there, you really don’t have to anymore.
So much of what you need to know about your audience to influence your social media marketing strategy is already out in the open.
Take today’s social media demographics. These numbers speak directly to which networks your brand should approach and what types of content to publish. Here are some key takeaways:
- Facebook and YouTube are both prime places for ads due in part to their high-earning user bases.
- The majority of Instagram’s are millennials or Gen Z, signaling the strength of bold, eye-popping content that oozes with personality.
- Women vastly outnumber men on Pinterest, which is noted to boast the highest average order value for social shoppers.
- LinkedIn’s user base is well-educated, making it a hub for in-depth, industry-specific content that might be more complicated than what you see on Facebook or Twitter.
Step 3. Know your competition
Odds are your competitors are already using social media, and that means you can learn from what they’re doing.
A competitive analysis allows you to understand who the competition is and what they’re doing well (and not so well). You’ll get a good sense of what’s expected in your industry, which will help you set social media targets of your own.
It will also help you spot opportunities.
Maybe one of your competitors is dominant on Facebook, for example, but has put little effort into Twitter or Instagram. You might want to focus on the networks where your audience is underserved, rather than trying to win fans away from a dominant player.
Step 4. Do a social media audit
If you’re already using social media, take stock of your efforts so far. Ask yourself the following questions:
- What’s working, and what’s not?
- Who is engaging with your?
- Which networks does your target audience use?
- How does your social media presence compare to the competition?
Once you collect that information, you’ll be ready to start thinking about ways to improve.
Step 5 .Create and curate engaging social content
Your social media marketing strategy is obviously centered around content.
At this point, you should have a pretty good idea of what to publish based on your goal and brand identity. Similarly, you probably feel confident in which networks to cover.
Step 6. Make timeliness a top priority
Timeliness is a two-way street.
You can’t always expect customers to operate on “your time.” Likewise, it’s crucial to be able to reach and respond to followers in a timely manner.
step 7. Assess what’s working, what isn’t and how you can improve
By now you should have a big-picture understanding of your social media strategy.
However, it’s important that you’re able to adapt your strategy as you progress throughout the year.
Without continuously analyzing your efforts, you’ll never know how one campaign did over another. This means looking at your top-performing content and fine-tuning your campaigns accordingly.
There’s no denying that a lot of social media is a matter of trial-and-error. Monitoring the metrics behind your campaigns in real-time allows you to make small tweaks to your social media marketing strategy rather than sweeping, time-consuming changes.
This dynamic approach to marketing makes perfect sense in a day and age where social media is constantly evolving. You can be reactive in the short term to get the most out of your running campaigns
Step 8. Evaluate and adjust your strategy
Your social media strategy is a hugely important document for your business, and you can’t assume you’ll get it exactly right on the first try. As you start to implement your plan and track your results, you may find that some strategies don’t work as well as you’d anticipated, while others are working even better than expected.
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