To develop a game plan for your business, you will need a set of social media marketing strategies to succeed. Also, these will help in increasing your social media following. By using the best social media strategies, these tools enable you to draft your marketing objectives, select the right networks for your products and services, and assist you to measure your desired results.
What is a Social Marketing Strategy?
Anything that contributes to what you want to attain through social media platforms is known as a social media marketing strategy. The summary of your to-do lists serves as your guide in creating your action plans and helps you identify whether you succeed or fail in your goals. Everything you do such as liking, posting, replying and commenting need to have a specific purpose.
A more defined strategy makes your action plan more effective. Always keep things simple and concise. Never do anything so grand or broad that is difficult to measure.
Good Planning is Key
Creating a social media marketing plan when building your content can be a daunting endeavor. However, preparing a solid plan can make your life much easier while working.
Why is a social media marketing plan necessary? Based on the 2018 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends-North America survey, participants who employed a social media strategy had higher success rates in their businesses compared to those who did not use any online marketing plan. Here are some recommended tips for a social media marketing plan that will provide expected results.
#1 Identify the factors of how your customers arrive at certain decisions
When establishing an effective social media marketing plan, you should be aware of how your customers decide before making a purchase. The more you know about who your customers are, the better you understand their thought processes and how they plan prior to buying your product or service.
By doing so, you put things in their proper perspective. This helps you to determine the frame of mind they use when they first hear about what you offer. Do you know what pops into their heads when they hear about your brand? As they learn more about your products and services, they likely have several questions in their mind and want to seek answers. Take time to help them find the answers. Then, know what their final consideration is before they decide to buy your product. All these are part of the buyer’s characteristics.
Every demographic group has its own distinct decision-making. It is critical to fully understand the buyer’s purchasing behavior and thought processes.
By evaluating your demographics at the very start of your planning, you ensure that each piece of useful content that you draft will provide them the necessary details that they are looking for. In the process, this builds your brand’s reputation and helps you gain the customers’ trust. This is the essence of content marketing that makes your product valuable and relatable.
#2 Select social networks that best fit your business goals
Currently, there are many popular social networks available. However, not all of them are suitable for your business. You need to be keen in choosing which of these you will employ for your target customers. Carefully evaluate several platforms that you think will drive your existing and potential customers to make a purchase. Once you have identified them, these are the social networks that you should focus on. Below are the widely used platforms and their common users.
Facebook. Facebook is considered the most popular social media network. It has over 1.86 billion active users in a month. As cited by the Pew Research Center survey, about 68% of American adults online use Facebook. The survey added that most Facebook users in the U.S. who are always online consist of women (83%), which is a bit higher than men (75%).
YouTube. YouTube ranks second as the most widely used social media network worldwide. It has 167.4 billion unique users each month, based on the Pew study, which involves men aged 18 to 24 (94%).
Instagram. Instagram comes in third place with at least 600 million monthly users. This has steadily increased in recent years.
Twitter. Twitter takes the fourth spot with 381 million users in a month. Most of them use this platform via their smartphones or mobile devices.
LinkedIn. For B2B online networking, LinkedIn is the go-to social networking site. It has 106 million monthly users. Recent college graduates and high-income individuals widely use this platform.
Most social media site users are usually active once a day while some use different platforms several times daily.
If your buyer is a professional woman aged 40 or above, Facebook is a better option compared to YouTube. However, in case you have a buyer persona of male college graduates in their early 20s, YouTube should be in your hit list. For both buyer categories, LinkedIn may also be advantageous.
#3 Create goals and key performance indicators
After identifying your customers and what social media platforms to use, you can integrate these together to identify your goals in developing your social media marketing plan. Below are three main reasons that many enterprises consider social media as powerful tools to boost their business strategies:
- Increase brand awareness and market visibility
- Drive more website traffic
- Achieve higher sales leads
These three goals are quite common. However, it is worthwhile to ponder on social media platforms that are most suitable for your business instead of experimenting with everything and seeing which will work. The best social network to use is highly dependent on the nature of your business- especially your buyer’s persona. It would take some effort to identify what works best for you.
Once you have set your goals, you can now decide how to track your progress by measuring your performance indicators. Always use specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals. As you assess your target goals, you can easily monitor if your social media activities succeed as expected.
For instance, if driving traffic to your website is your priority, you will surely want to check the number of hits that your website gets.
#4 Do your homework regarding what online content to post
Building some ideas is a good start. However, you still need to research more topics to provide what your audience wants and the posts you should focus on. Doing your homework really matters a lot. A successful content marketing strategy is understanding what your customers need and not merely feeding information that you want.
Content selection is not supposed to be a tedious task. The good thing is that you have an opportunity to interact and ask your audience directly. You can use Facebook and Twitter to execute polls, which serve a double purpose of engaging with your prospects. Google Forms is another option to develop a brief survey.
These options serve to further validate your assumptions regarding your customer’s interests or personal issues. By collecting data about them, you can meet their needs by providing valuable content.
Ensure that you regularly monitor the social media accounts that your customers are interested in. Check whether your posts are performing well. The goal is not to duplicate what others are already doing. Understand what is already available and whether your audience responds to it. Using this information, you can develop and share distinct content while filling gaps that are not present anywhere else.
#5 Use catchy headlines when planning your blog posts
Choosing interesting topics is a good start point. However, an impactful blog title attracts readers, making them want to know more about your content. Planning and posting your blog in a timely manner is crucial for assisting your customers with their purchasing decisions. For example, if there is a product launch, service trial or three-day sale, the promotional articles should be posted early before the customers begin their shopping activities.
The importance of headlines
A good article title or headline needs to be interesting, informative, and factual. Avoid creating witty titles simply to attract clicks. The main objective of content marketing is to establish customer rapport and your company’s credibility. Click baits are not encouraged. Instead, create titles and content that respond to your customer needs or any reader pain point. Providing helpful tips is always very useful. You may opt to use terms like “how” and “what,” including descriptive lists of “best things” and “top choices.”
Drafting impactful titles provides a clear indicator to the readers of what the article will be about. If it responds to a specific question or issue, readers are more likely to click through and read the full article.
After making a list of your title drafts, you can schedule them for posting on your target social media platform. Your post frequency depends on several factors like how much content you can create and share within a specific period. With this task, consistency is a critical element. Target dates should be met and always stick with them, so your prospects are aware of what to expect.
Prior to posting content, review each carefully to ensure its logical flow and that it delivers what the title suggests.
#6 Be consistent when interacting with your viewers
As you begin to execute your content marketing strategy, always actively check how prospects respond to your posts. Be sure to engage consistently with your audience. If your goal is to boost audience engagement, closely monitor what is being posted online and see how it performs.
When someone comments or asks a question on your FB page, respond or react to it right away. If your post is retweeted with a comment, make it a habit to reply and acknowledge the user. At times, you may follow certain people on Instagram and like their posts. All these activities make social media a powerful tool in interacting with different people. Overall, your audience will appreciate your initiatives.
#7 Determine how your social media marketing plan works
The contribution of your social media efforts can be measured through the key performance indicators as cited above. Your progress can be monitored by developing your weekly and monthly checking activities. Based on the installed metrics, you can take note of which posts performed well and those that didn’t have any impact.
At times, modifications may be required. Simple adjustments can increase your final results. Many business owners enjoy the process of engaging with their customers while achieving their business goals and objectives. For all your business digital marketing services, check out Bryant Digital Services.