06 Jun 2018 5 simple steps to creating your social media marketing strategy
Creating your social media marketing strategy
Social media marketing is a very powerful tool that every company should learn to harness, currently 81% of all small and medium businesses are using some kind of social platform, however many businesses create social media platforms without a devised plan on how they will use it, who they are targeting or how it will work alongside their current marketing strategy.
Here a Purple Sprout we have put together 5 simple steps to creating your social media strategy.
Establish your goals
The first step to creating your social media marketing strategy is making the following decisions: what do you hope to achieve? Do you want to raise brand awareness? Are you looking to increase sales or traffic to your website? or maybe all the above. This doesn’t mean you can’t achieve a few of these goals, but we suggest you choose two primary goals and two secondary goals to focus on. From this you can now create suitable objectives with realistic and achievable targets.
Who are your customers?
You will want to be as specific as possible at this point, you don’t want to run the risk of spending money on social media marketing across the wrong platforms, to the wrong people.
Consider the following:
- Job Title
- Most used social platform
Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn all offer basic demographic data, however if you have the budget you could also consider, online surveys, focus groups or accumulate your own customer reviews.
The more data you can collect the more accurately you can start to understand your own target audience. Once you have collected your data, look for common trends, for example men who are 50+ living in Derbyshire or women in their 30’s who live in built up areas, even list the specific cities.
Analysing your data can create from two to five personas that can fall into various age ranges. Once you have decided upon your personas, rank them with the most common occurring characteristics being first. Research further to understand the likes and dislikes of your chosen market(s). The better you understand your audience the more likely your social media content will appeal to them. Social media examiner states “If a business is suffering from low engagement on their social profiles, it’s usually because they don’t have an accurate ideal customer profile.”
Look at your competition
Is your competitor already using social media? There’s no need to fret, this just means you can learn from them, and their mistakes. Looking at what they do will not only introduce you to what is expected from the industry, but also offer you the opportunity to spot any gaps in the current market. Comprehensive research will help you to set your own objectives. Social media examiner offers great advice on this “pay attention to the type of content they’re posting and its context (humorous, promotional, etc.) and how they’re responding to their fans.”
Choose your channels
Not all businesses will benefit from having every social media channel, Wordstream advises “More than 56% of online adults using more than one social media platform.” it’s up to you to choose the right ones for the products/services you’re selling. Don’t worry you’re not completely alone, below is what we think of each channel.
LinkedIn: A professional platform that is great for B2B – You can use the site’s ‘People you may know tool’ to reach out to professionals with similar backgrounds and connections.
Twitter: Ideal for small – medium sized businesses, Wordstream has suggested “88% of businesses with more than 100 employees use twitter for marketing purposes.” It is an important platform for customer service, and can be utilised to drive traffic to your website or blog posts by simply sharing the links.
Facebook: A platform that offers many benefits provided you set up a business profile, there is options to set up automated responses from messenger, schedule your posts or advertise to specific demographics with paid advertising. Wordstream states “Over 50 million businesses use Facebook Business Pages.”
Instagram: 100% image lead, we would suggest this platform if you have lots of eye-catching imagery or interesting videos you want to share with your customers – and they are consistent.
Always remember, your customer data doesn’t lie, If your target audience tell you they spend 35% of their online time on Facebook and 15% on Twitter, you know which primary and secondary social networks you should focus on.
Build a content plan
The content needs to be consistent and align with your overall messaging as well as being appropriate for the channels you have chosen to use. Think of ways you can deliver content that is of real value to your audience, you don’t need to stick to one type of media, for example: videos on how to use your product or service, answer frequently asked questions, help your customers to solve problems with how to guides, images or any other styles that will engage with your potential customers effectively. Don’t treat content as something you post occasionally, you need to have a constant presence delivering fresh updates and ideas on a regular basis.