Creating and following a social media strategy for your business is important, not only to keep you focused and organized, but so you can measure your success and alter your social media strategy as needed.
Creating a social media strategy doesn’t need to be complicated, follow these 5 steps to get started.
Step 1. Set goals and objectives
Setting very clear goals and objectives for why you are using social media, and then more specifically why you are using specific platforms will help keep a clear picture for your business on social media.
Goals can be more than just getting more sales:
- improve/ faster customer service
- brand awareness
- increase contact/ email list
- increase social media audience
- more event attendees
- increase website traffic
When you consider joining a new social media platform, make sure that it aligns with your company’s overall mission, vision and brand. My goal on Facebook, for example is to educate current and potential customers, grow my email list and create a community, and on Twitter more goal is to connect with social media influencers, create relationships and engage. Your goals for each platform can be different.
Step 2. Understand Your Audience
Do you know who your ideal customer is?
One of the best pieces of advice I heard about creating your customer avatar is to be very specific and describe one person who you are speaking to each time you post onto social media, write a blog, create a video, etc.
Example of a one-person customer avatar:
Sam is a 50 year-old business owner who knows the importance of social media, wants to use for his business, yet, doesn’t have the time to dedicate to using it. He needs to hire someone to manage his social media accounts.
Sam can sometimes be unorganized but is very knowledgeable in his business and is a wonderful boss to his staff. He has a great family life, has two children ages 20 and 18. He thought he could let them handle his social media accounts, but realized he needed a professional.
In his spare time, Sam enjoys fishing, the outdoors and spending time with his family.
Get very specific when creating this customer avatar, because it will help you craft your messages, use the proper language to reach your potential customer, and keep it clear in your mind who you are speaking to.
Step 3. Conduct a social media audit
If you haven’t set up your social media profiles, you can skip this step, however, I encourage you to do a social media audit once you have been on social media for longer than a few months, and continue doing an audit regularly.
Conducting a social media audit is a way of checking in to make sure you are being consistent across all your social media channels, that your branding is consistent, and that your accounts and message is aligned with your overall goal.
You might notice once you take the time to really look at your accounts that maybe you missed completing something in a profile, that your accounts need updating, or that you need to freshen up your graphics.
How to conduct a social media audit:
- list all your social media profiles
- record your audience numbers and compare to your previous numbers
- review each profile and determine whether it is aligned with your business and social media goals
- list the areas that need to be improved
- what is working and not working with each profile
- revise your profiles as needed
Hootsuite has a more in-depth article about conducting a social media audit as well as a social media audit template.
Once your initial social media audit is complete, you might determine that you need to create a new profile on a platform that aligns with your company and that could bring value to your customer service.
4. Create a content strategy
Creating a content strategy will help keep you organized, save you time and will ensure your content – whether social media posts, blogs, videos, podcasts- are all on point with your social media goals and overall strategy.A great way to cut down on the time you spend on social media is to use a social media management tool like
Use a content and editorial calendar to plan out the themes or message of your content. Decide on the days you are creating specific content, and try to stick to that schedule. This will save you time, and will create a consistency for your audience.
Once your content is planned, choose one day to create your social media post content – graphics, content curation, etc.- and create and schedule all at once. This will save you so much time and is much more productive than doing each day.
5. Track, measure and alter your social media strategy
Now that you have your overall strategy and goals and have everything organized and consistent, make sure to keep track of your numbers, and also of what is working and not working.
If one aspect of your social media strategy is increased website traffic, and you are running Facebook ads, make sure to test different ads and track which version works the best. Keep track of this insight so you can use with future campaigns.
Use your social media analytics and Google Analytics so you can see which posts are working well, your most popular content, and what interests your audience. You might think one thing, but the data will tell you something else.
Another way of tracking and measuring success is your audience input, so you could ask specific questions on social media or create a survey to get more information.
Keep these tips in mind when you are creating your own social media plan and use this social media strategy overview to get started.
Do you currently have a social media strategy for your business? Is it effective? Let me know in the comments below!