Social media is one of the most influencing factors for every type of company in the modern era. Once upon a time, when social media was first introduced, there was a common question. Should I use social media for my company? People do not ask that question anymore. The question has converted now into something else. How can we grow our company with a proper social media marketing strategy?
Here comes the role of a social media strategy plan. In this article, we will discuss how you can create a perfect social media plan and content. Our other concern will be some effective plans for the same and its steps.
How to create a social media strategy
A social media strategy is just a summary of what you are going to do on your social media platform.
To create the perfect social media plan, you should be as specific as possible.
It will ensure the success of your social media strategy plan.
In the following paragraphs, we will share the steps of creating a social media plan with you.
Step 1: Choosing the social media goals
This step applies to all types of plans.
You must know your goals before making any strategy.
Keep in mind that your social media marketing goals must align with your business objectives.
It helps you value your work and compare it shoulder to shoulder.
Make sure that your goals are smart.
Here, the word ‘SMART’ stands for several words.
- The S stands for specific.
- The letter M stands for measurable.
- Similarly, the letter A stands for attainable.
- The R is relevant.
- And finally, the letter T refers to ‘time-bound.’
As a successful business person, you will have so many goals.
All of your goals must include these five criteria.
After selecting appropriate social media goals, recheck them with the five.
If they match correctly, you can expect good results.
Without proper social media marketing goals, you cannot expect success or even a return on your investment.
On the contrary, setting appropriate goals will give you sure success.
Hopefully, the ‘SMART’ technique will help you select the proper social media goals.
Make sure to track relevant metrics.
While the number of likes and followers will help you count easily, they are not much of that value.
Instead, clicks, conversion rates, engagement, etc. are valuable.
Another thing that you need to keep in mind is that different metrics may be suitable for various networks.
While your Facebook media plan template may demand something, your Instagram strategy may demand something different.
To resolve this issue, you can track different networks with different metrics.
Step 2: Choose suitable social media sites
Each network and social media is unique.
While Instagram spreads hashtag content more rapidly, Facebook does not.
That is to say that every social media network is specific to its audience, own style, and own practices.
So should you be on all of these social media networks?
No, that is not necessary.
You just need to make sure that you are using the social network that fits your goals and strategy the most.
Keep your goals in front and then decide.
It will help you choose the appropriate sites.
It can either be only one site or many sites.
Just make sure that you have chosen the one that suits both you and your audience.
Here are some things that you might consider while choosing an appropriate social media site.
Audience: Learn about your audience as much as possible
Knowing your audience is the key to getting success with your strategy.
What does knowing your audience mean?
Knowing your audience is a must for success in any company.
However, knowing your audience is not that much of a wide-ranged thing in social media marketing strategy.
You only need to understand what your audience wants to see and where.
This way, you get an assumption about the social media sites your audience visits the most.
Besides, you will know what your audience will like, share, and comment.
You can then create content accordingly and get the estimated amount of likes, comments, and shares.
Keep in mind that age and sex plays a vital role in determining your social media network.
While young adults prefer using Facebook and Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn are more popular among the elders.
How does gender affect your choice of social media network?
A study shows that young adult women prefer Instagram more than young adult men do.
We see the same results for Facebook, too.
However, the gap is not this much for Facebook.
Is not that something you should know while writing a social media plan?
Time: How much time can you spend on social media networks?
Time is worth everything.
If you spend a lot of time, you can expect better results.
On the contrary, expecting better results is nothing more than dreams for you if you do not give enough time.
At the start, give at least one hour per day on your chosen social network.
Once you have earned enough popularity, you can reduce the time you used to spend on social networks.
Resources: Contents affect the type of social media
An example should be enough to explain it to you.
Facebook emphasizes the quality of your content.
It does not vary much whether the content is a blog post, an image, or a video.
On the other hand, visual social media like Instagram emphasizes images and videos.
RELATED: HOW TO START AN INSTAGRAM BUSINESS
So if your resource or content is an image or a video, you can consider using Instagram.
And if it is something else or something with high-quality content, you can consider posting it on Facebook.
Step 3: Fill out your social media profiles completely
A complete profile attracts the audience.
On the other hand, an incomplete profile makes the audience fall in doubt about you and your company.
Indeed, you do not want your audience to fall into such a doubt.
Besides, a complete profile expresses professionalism and seriousness.
You need to use a professional profile picture and cover picture, though.
Another advantage that a complete profile gives is cohesive branding.
People get the idea that you are serious about them.
There are two parts that a complete profile requires- text and visuals.
The text of your professional profile should also be the same.
It may include several references.
Make sure that your info or bio looks professional.
To ensure that your bio looks professional, you can follow these six suggestions:
- Include what you did instead of who you are. While ‘who you are’ expresses pride, ‘what you did’ represents your experience and performance.
- Decorate your keywords in such a way that attracts your audience.
- Avoid slang or inappropriate words in your bio. Instead, use fresh, grammatically correct language.
- Your audience wants to know what is in your company for them. Try to answer their question in your bio. You can even include a separate section that names ‘what you get’ or ‘what we offer.’
- Be personal with your audience. Keep a personal tone in your bio section.
- Edit your bio now and then. What you offer today might change tomorrow. Similarly, your experience and portfolio will change over time, as well. You need to make sure that you keep your bio updated.
The second part- visuals:
Visuals are the primary part of your profile.
When a person visits your profile, the first thing they see is the visuals.
Hence, the importance of visuals is this much.
A good suggestion is to use the same picture as your profile picture that is your professional company photo.
Some businesses even use their company logo as their professional profile picture.
Picture size is also an essential factor.
The cover photo of Facebook is relatively smaller than that of Twitter and LinkedIn.
Step 4: Find the perfect tone and voice for your social marketing
Every company provides some or other services.
Based on their service type, the tone changes.
When you are offering something friendly, your tone should be friendly too.
Similarly, if you are offering something serious, let’s say about the medicine of a disease, a friendly tone would not do.
In that case, you need to use a serious voice.
It will help the audience comply with you.
If you offer a wide variety of services in your company, your tone should change accordingly.
Now, let’s think about your tone on your social channel.
How should it be?
A regular suggestion is to keep it friendly.
However, sometimes a scary tone is more helpful than a friendly tone.
You should decide that depending on your content and social media site type.
Spend more time on your social channel.
It would help you determine your tone and voice.
Step 5: Pick a posting strategy
Let’s say you have posted on any social media ten times on a single day.
What do you think?
Should that excite your audience or tire them?
From my perspective, I can surely tell you that it will bore your audience.
Is that what you want?
You should post regularly that does not bore your audience.
Instead, it excites them to your posts and content.
However, the amount of time you should post per day depends on the type of content and audience.
While young adults like to keep updated about specific news or items, elders do not do the same.
Similarly, some contents require regular updates, while others require late updates.
If you have gained quite some experience in your social media channel, it will be easy for you to determine the regularity of your posts.
Another important question is when you should post.
Some media offers the highest spread at noon, while others offer the highest spread in the late evening.
To make sure that you post at the perfect time, you should undergo some experiments.
Try different types of content at different times.
Check on which time you get the most responses.
Step 6: Run tests
Run several tests on how your posts are doing the work for your company.
When you start posting regularly, it should be easier.
Set a milestone.
Check how much time it takes you to reach that milestone, or even you can reach it.
You can even use some online measuring tools.
There are many of these tools that help companies to run tests on such posts and contents.
Step 7: Engage with your audience and listen to them
It is the final step of creating a social media plan.
When you post content on the social channel, it is the first step of engaging yourself with your audience.
The next steps include having live sessions with them, offering them different promotions and sales, replying to their comments, and so on.
Keep in mind that the more you engage with your audience, the more your chance of converting them into your customers.
So spend time with them.
Invest your valuable time and contents behind them.
Ultimately, you will get the success you wanted at the very beginning.
Steps for an effective social media marketing plan
An effective social media marketing plan includes several steps.
Step 1: Measuring your current presence in the social world
Before you know your customers, you must know yourself first.
When you know yourself well, it will help you determine the strategy you are going to adopt.
Knowing yourself, in other words, is to determine where you are now.
As you want to measure your current social presence, i.e., your current state, there are a few areas that you should emphasize.
Here are some of them-
- Which networks you are currently active on, i.e., which networks you are using for your social media marketing
- Whether your networks are optimized or not. In other words, have you completed your profile? (cover and profile images, URL, bio, etc.)
- Which networks bring you the most valuable output. We can also put it this way- which networks are doing most of the work for you?
- And finally, are your profiles comparable with that of your competitors’?
When you found and made a list of answers to all these questions, you have overcome the first step of your writing a social media strategy plan.
It is time to move to the next step.
Step 2: Determine your ideal customer
Customers are the heart of your business.
Your business evolves around them.
If you know your customers well, you know your business well.
As a result, succeeding is just a matter of time for you.
Now, as you want to write a social media marketing plan, you should know your ideal customer.
The more specific you get to know your customers, the better.
It will help you customize products or services accordingly.
Let’s say you know that you know that your customers are adults.
Now you know that offering adult-oriented products will make the market.
However, it will help you categorize even the products you chose earlier if you know their age range.
So here are some factors based on which you can determine your ideal customer.
- Age: It is the first criteria that will affect your product range
- Job title: Another phenomenon to determine your customer
- Location: It may not seem that important at first. But as you proceed with your business, you will understand that it is the most important of all.
- Income: Your customer will buy your product or services based on their income.
- Most used social media: As you want to create a strategy, you must know what social media your customers use the most.
- Problems (that your business offers a solution to): A business is all about solving issues or making life better for your customers.
Step 3: Create a statement for your social media channel
Presenting yourself in front of people is the primary target of a social media marketing plan.
In the previous steps, we have taken preparations.
Now it is time to move a real step.
That is to create a statement for your social media channel.
While making the statement, you need to be careful about what you include.
Keep your ideal customers in mind when creating the statement.
The best point about creating a statement is that it will help you develop appropriate future content when you have created a perfect statement.
What should you include?
Well, include what makes you unique and lets you stand out from the crowd.
Then, include what your strategy is.
Indeed, you cannot share the whole strategy in just a statement.
All you need to make sure is that the audience understands your plan when they go through your statement.
The statement should always reflect your brand identity.
What good is a social media statement if it does not reflect your brand identity?
Make sure that you use concise language.
Nowadays, people do not have much time to read lines after lines.
Even if you have written a single line, but it is a long one, they will lose interest even to start reading.
Hence, make it short and crispy.
Remove the unnecessary words and phrases.
Make sure that your statement is grammatically correct and easy to read.
You do not want to tire your audience with your statement.
If they get tired of your statement, when will they convert into your customer and make a purchase?
Step 4: Identify the success metrics to follow
Let’s suppose that you have created and implemented a social media plan.
The plan makes both you and your customers happy.
It makes you think that the contents are effective.
Well, is that so?
How can you determine if the contents are effective?
Some metrics will help you decide whether they are effective or not.
Some of those key metrics are as follows-
- Conversion rate: An audience and a customer are two completely different things. Anybody can be your audience. Even your competitors can be your audience. But a customer is the one who receives your products or services either through a purchase or a gift. The conversion rate will help you determine which of your audience are converting into your customers.
- Time spent on your website: Do you think your competitors will spend their valuable time on your website, increasing its market value? They surely won’t do such a thing. You can identify the success of your social media plan steps, depending on the time your customers are spending on your website.
- Reach: We sometimes see that some brands have reached even unknown places. It helps us determine that brand’s value and popularity. It applies to your business, too. Based on your business’ reach, you can determine your success.
- Brand mentions: The more successful your social media marketing is, the more you will get brand mentions.
- Sentiment: Public sentiment regarding your business also works as a key metric for your success.
- Total shares: It is the most easily understandable metric of your success.
Step 5: Create engaging content
Content is the central part of your propaganda.
If the content is poor, your whole strategy is flawed.
If the content is rich, you can expect a good outcome from your strategy.
Many businesses think of this step as the primary target of their strategy and jump straight to it.
However, the previous steps are necessary to shape your content perfectly.
If you jump to this step just like other companies do, you will fall just like them.
Having a successful company means to follow the previous steps and then to create content based on the outcomes of those steps.
In the previous steps, we have known who our ideal customers are.
Eventually, we used that information to create our social media statement.
Now, you can start creating content based on that statement.
Why should your content be based on the statement?
That is because this way, you can ensure customer-oriented content.
Here are some types of content that you can create:
- Blog posts: Blog posts are the primary source of making your website a ranked one.
- eBooks: Sharing eBooks as your content is gaining more fame day by day.
- Photos: An audience tends to spend most of their time on photos.
- Videos: Videos are as much popular as images, sometimes even more.
- Infographics: As they concisely show necessary information, your customers will appreciate it.
- Company News: Company news is perfect content for your business’ social media channel.
- Interviews: An interview with a celebrity will increase your popularity many times.
You can add more to this list.
However, keep in mind that creating quality content is more important than creating a handful of content.
Step 6: Usage of a social media management tool
We have already gone through the necessary steps of creating a social media strategy plan.
It is time to implement that strategy.
So here comes the first step of implementation.
What is that?
It is the usage of a social media management tool.
A tool may seem unnecessary to some people.
Moreover, as it costs you quite some money, the unnecessary feeling grows upward.
Nevertheless, investing in a social media management tool is necessary.
It is necessary for your company as well as your communication with your customers.
A social media management tool has become a secret weapon for business owners nowadays.
They all tend to boost their content through social media management.
A social media marketing tool will help you with a wide variety of tasks.
At first, it will help you measure your current position in the social media market.
Scheduling is yet another advantage of investing in a social management tool.
That is to say that you can schedule your content with the help of such a tool.
This way, you can get ahead of others and even yourself.
Just create a content schedule, and then rest assured.
The contents will be updated accordingly from time to time.
Step 7: Analyze and optimize according to the tracked data
It is the most practical step of an effective social media plan.
Even the best marketers take this step very seriously.
The step firstly includes tracking your progress.
If you do not know your promotions or demotions, how can you expect to better your company?
Hence, the importance of monitoring your progress arises.
The next step is to analyze the progress you tracked.
Compare the tracked information with your previous condition.
It will help you know if you are moving the right way.
If the analysis guides you to Facebook, move to Facebook.
And if it moves to Instagram, you should move to Instagram.
Eventually, you can correct your steps or stick to them.
That is the final step- optimization.
During the last step, make sure that you evaluate all the previous steps.
Then, re-evaluate them.
Make sure that there is no flaw in your plan.
Keep in mind that success in every step is essential for the effectiveness of your social media plan.
The data you get from your evaluation and re-evaluation will guide you in the proper direction.
When following these steps, keep in mind that these steps are not a one-time thing.
Once you set a social media plan, it will do the work for you years after years.
You will just maybe need to make some editions in the plan from time to time.