Making the most out of social media marketing can be seriously overwhelming without a proper strategy in place. That’s why we’re breaking down 7 actionable steps to crafting your own customized social media marketing (SMM) strategy.
Know your Target Audience
Understanding your target audience (the ideal customer) may be the most difficult aspect of creating an effective marketing strategy. A great way to identify your target audience is to develop multiple buyer or audience personas. By identifying your ideal customers, you can tailor your marketing to highlight the wants, needs, goals, and pain points of your potential customers.
Identify the Right Channels
Next, you’ll need to do some research to find out which social media platforms make sense for your brand. Contrary to some belief, you do not have to be on every channel and it’s much more efficient if you only select the ones that serve your industry. Here is an in-depth breakdown on selecting the right channels for your business.
A few things to keep in mind while setting up your social media accounts:
- Properly fill out all fields to the best of your ability
- Utilize keywords whenever necessary
- Use high-resolution images that are sized correctly for your business profile and banner images.
Analyze your Competitors Strategy
An effective marketing strategy involves gathering real data, including competitor analysis. Researching your competitor’s online presence (including social media accounts, websites, and relevant press articles) will allow you to see what’s trending in your industry. It also provides insight on what type of content works well for their audiences. It may even help to identify the right keywords to include in your own SMM strategy.
Choose the Right Metrics for Your S.M.A.R.T. Goals
You’ll need to set S.M.A.R.T goals (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, time-bound) to properly measure the success of your social media marketing campaigns. These goals will also help measure your return on investment (ROI). There are a wide variety of SMM goals or metrics to do so, but here are a few of the most common types:
- Conversions – profile visits, direct messages, or website clicks
- Lead Generation – filling out a contact form or signing up for a newsletter
- Customer Engagement – likes, comments, and re-shares
- Brand Awareness – measured in reach and impressions
When you’re just getting started on social media, you’ll want to focus on brand awareness and customer engagement. As your brand becomes more known, you can then begin to focus on conversions and lead generation, because your audience will be more likely to take action once you’ve gained their trust.
Create a Diverse Content Strategy
It’s important to develop a diverse content strategy that speaks to your target audience. You may identify multiple content types or content pillars that you can rotate through each week, such as product photos, photos of your staff, resharing happy customer photos, or trending memes and quotes that are relevant to your brand.
Consistency is key: Stick to a weekly posting schedule and use your social media accounts analytics to distribute your content on the days and times your audience is most active online.
To further assist in planning your monthly content, be sure to follow other brands or key partners you admire to stay informed and help spark inspiration. It can also be helpful to stay up-to-date with relevant news, trends, and forecasts in your industry.
Build a Personalized Customer Experience
Did you know there are 3.5 billion users online for an average of three hours per day? Audiences are seeking a meaningful connection and a chance to be social with their online communities. It’s OK to get personal with your audience by asking questions, taking polls to find out their opinion on new or existing products, and engaging with their posts by liking, commenting, or re-sharing. The more you build an online community for your ideal customer, the more likely they are to become loyal customers.
Analyze, Refresh, Repeat
Every successful marketer consistently analyzes their accounts and adapts their strategies to what’s working. There will be some trial and error, but you’ll eventually start to identify the type of content your audience relates to. Pay close attention to what’s working and what isn’t. Then, continue to revise your content strategy every month for the best results.
Creating a simple social media strategy is no easy feat for any business. The digital world is constantly evolving, and so should your marketing strategies. Be sure to communicate your goals, plans, and strategies with your entire team to assist in making the most out of your online accounts.
Good luck and happy planning!