A Guide to Building Your Social Media Strategy

A Guide to Building Your Social Media Strategy

It’s all about the marketing strategy…and let me tell you, I have created ALOT! Which is why, I am about to break down 8 key steps that I follow, to ensure that you ace your social media presence!

Step 1: Set Social Media Marketing Goals That Align with Business Objectives

But what does this mean?

It means that you need to know your clients business and, more specifically, their objectives like the back of your hand! The more specific you are with your strategy, the more effective the execution will be.

In the marketing world, we often set SMART goals to track metrics, which helps set yourself up for success. The first step to any social media strategy is to establish your objectives and goals. Without goals, how do you measure your success or social media ROI?

Your smart goals include:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Time-bound

An example of a SMART goal may be to grow an Instagram audience by 50 new followers each week and with SMART goals in place, you can make sure your goals actually lead to real business results, rather than thinking about the ideas without any action.

With that being said, the metrics that you want to focus on tracking are leads generated, web referrals and conversion rates.

You can track many other goals on different social channels and use paid campaigns to increase brand awareness, but you should always pay close attention to the acquisition and engagement for organic social posts.

?TIP: Aligning these goals with your strategy will make it easier to show the value of your work to clients and potential customers.

Step 2: Know Your Audience

This is one of the biggest tips I can give you, and I see so many business owners and marketers not getting it right. Knowing your audience is what helps you market your brand to the right target audience and in turn, reap those conversions.

It is what makes one business stand out from its competitors.

Yes, Social media listening is KEY, but if you aren’t listening and building your understanding of your audience, then how do we get to know our audience?

Create Audience Personas:

Knowing who your audience is and what they want to see is extremely important in creating content that they will like, comment on and share, which increases the chances of SM (social media) fans turning into valued customers.

Creating audience personas based on demographics, buying motivations and emotional needs of each customer is a way to sharpen your marketing tactics and give you the customer insights needed to create campaigns that actually speak to your audience and buyers.

Never Assume

This is a mistake so many business owners and even marketers face but Social media analytics can provide a ton of great information about who your followers are, where they live, their language, and how they interact with your brand.

These insights help you refine your strategy and help you better target your SM ads and in turn, audience.

Step 3: Research Enemy Soil

Everyone is using social media which means that your competition is using it. So, get stalking (their social media accounts, of course!)

There are two ways that I tend to do research on industry/business competition:

The first is by conducting competitive analysis, this allows you to understand who your competition is, what they do well, and what they don’t do so well in.

It also gives you a good sense of what is happening in your industry and to set some social media targets of your own.

?TIP: Focus on the audience that may be underserved rather than trying to steal customers from your competition.

The second is to engage in social listening and keep track of your competition. As you track your competitor’s accounts and relevant keywords, you may start to pick up on strategic ways that your competitors are using their social accounts, what they are posting and the ads that seem to be doing really well and use that research to your advantage.

Step 4: Audit, Audit, Audit

Audits are ridiculously important and I personally conduct an audit each month for all of our clients’ accounts, to evaluate the accounts current performance.

It requires you to take a step back and understand your account, audience, what is working, what isn’t working, who your target market is and what your social media presence looks like, compared to your competitors.

Once you gather all of that information, you can start to plan ways to optimise your account and improve your results.

Your audit should give you a good idea of the purpose your account serves, but if the purpose isn’t clear, you need to ask yourself whether the account is valuable enough to keep.

Asking these questions may help, if you are thinking about getting rid of an account:

  1. Is my audience here?
  2. If so, how are they using this platform?
  3. Can I use this account to achieve the business goals?

?TIP: Look for and report impostor accounts, as these can damage your brand.

Step 5: Decide Which Networks You Will Focus On, Set Up Accounts and Optimise

Each network you decide to use will also need a defined strategy.

For example, you may decide to use Facebook for customer acquisition and Instagram for engaging existing customers.

I like to create one-sentence statements, which can help you focus on specific goals for each account and what you hope to accomplish.

For example:

  • Instagram is where you will build your brand and engage with existing customers
  • Facebook is best for targeting new customers via paid ads.

Once you have set up your accounts, focus on optimising the accounts to align with your strategy. This includes filling out bios/fields, using keywords, and using correctly sized images for each social media channel you choose to use.

Step 6: Collect Your Inspo

It is important to create a brand that is distinctive and unique but, it doesn’t hurt to draw inspiration from accounts that are doing great on SM as a way to generate ideas for your own brand.

The key is to find successful accounts and posts using tools well, these case studies offer valuable insights where you can apply your own goals.

You can also find award-winning brands who are killing the social media game here.

Step 7: Make Content Calendars Your Bread and Butter

Sharing great content is one thing, but sharing it at the right time to obtain maximum impact is another.

The calendar needs to list the dates and optimal times at which you will post specific content for each channel (a perfect place to plan all of your SM activity)

?TIP: Don’t forget to include the time you will spend interacting with your audience in your Social Media Content Calendar.

Social media content mix:

Plotting your content on the calendar is another great way to make sure that everything you are posting is supporting your business goals.

Ratio planning your content is also a great way to test your audience and find out what works for your brand, for example:

  • 50% of content will drive traffic to your blog
  • 5% will be about company culture or employees

If you aren’t sure what ratio you should be implementing or have only just started on social media, I have written a blog post discussing the 70-20-10 rule, a perfect place to start!

Once you have your calendar set, using scheduling tools can help take the bulk work away from you so that you only need to focus on the content, and the format of the posts, rather than writing them quickly and posting them straight away, without planning.

Step 8: Test, Evaluate and Adjust Your Strategy

Your strategy is SUPER important but nobody gets it right on their first time…so give yourself time to learn!

As you start to implement your plan and track your results, you will find that some strategies don’t work as well as what you thought, yet some will work better than expected and that’s okay, I am still going through some teething issues with account campaigns now!

Tracking your data via UTM parameters can help you track visitors as they move through your website so that you can see exactly which social posts drive the most traffic to your websites, additionally use the analytic tools on every social media channel you choose to use. These provide great insight into your audience.

When data starts to come in, use it to evaluate your strategy.

Test different posts, campaigns and strategies against one another and be aware that social media and the audience is forever changing and you will need to adapt your content to reflect those changes.

Constant testing allows you to understand what works and what doesn’t work so that you can constantly refine your strategy and obtain maximum results!

Do you have experience with social media strategies that you would love to share with us?

Or do you have questions about anything in this post?

Drop a comment below! I would love to have a chat with you!