How to Keep Your Social Media Strategy Simple & Effective
As an entrepreneur, your time is an extremely valuable resource, so when it comes to using social media to build your brand and business it’s essential to maximize your returns on the time you invest!
Despite this, many entrepreneurs struggle to create and execute a simple but effective social strategy.
To make sure YOU aren’t one of those struggling entrepreneurs, let’s talk about a simple framework to set you and your business up for social media success. Here are my 4 Steps to Simple Social Media Success:
GOALS & OBJECTIVES: Know What You Want Before You Start
Before you spend any time on social media for your business, you want to make sure you’re clear on what you want to accomplish. What goals are you working toward?
Here are some of the most common goals for social-savvy entrepreneurs:
- Connecting with New Customers & Lead Generation
- Retaining Current Customers & Increasing Loyalty
- Improving Customer Service and Satisfaction
- Customer Education & Objection Handling
Make your goals actionable by pairing it with a social media marketing objective.
- Example Goal: Generate new sales
- Example Objective: Increase sales by 20% this quarter by sharing photos on Instagram that boost our know/like/trust factor and link our leads over into our sales funnel
Remember to use the SMART approach – specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-specific – when creating your objectives and you’ll be able to use your social media metrics and analytics to measure your progress and decide whether you need to adjust what you’re doing to make a bigger impact.
SIMPLE JUMPSTART: Write down 3 goals and social media marketing objectives for your business and note what metrics you’ll use to track them.
TARGET AUDIENCE: Try to Appeal to Everyone and You’ll Appeal to No One
Most entrepreneurs that have been building a business for a while have a clear picture of their target audience or “Customer Avatar”, but whether you’ve been at this a while or are new to the game, it’s always a good move to make sure your customer target profile is accurate and up-to-date. Why? Because if you aren’t clear on who you’re trying to attract, your dream client or ideal customer won’t know if you’re right for them.
You want to have the picture in your mind of your target customer when you’re creating your social media content – almost like you’re talking directly to them! When you do this, it becomes easier to create content that resonates with your ideal audience and makes them think to themselves, “Wow – she totally gets me!” or “It’s like she’s in my head!”
Bonus – If you are investing in paid social media advertising, like Facebook Ads, knowing the details of your ideal customer’s demographics, interests, pains, problems, habits, interests, motivations and objections, makes it easier and cheaper to target them!
SIMPLE JUMPSTART: Write a profile of your ideal customer – name him or her and write out all the details you can think of about them – just like you were describing a real person that you know! When it comes time to create content for your social media and you’re feeling stuck, pull this out and ask yourself what this person would want to read or what would they need to know or learn or feel to want to work with you and your business.
CHANNEL SELECTION: Don’t Waste Time on the Wrong Platform
Too many business owners create accounts on every social platform and then only have time to invest in one or two leaving their other profiles to wither and resemble Wild West Ghost Towns. Don’t be that guy!
Avoid spreading yourself and your business too thin by using what you know about your buyers to pick the best platforms for your business and brand. Determine where your ideal audience spends the most time and then match that with what kind of content is the best match for your product or services.
SIMPLE JUMPSTART: Pick the 2 or 3 social platforms that are best for reaching your audience and create a mission statement for each platform to keep you on task for what you want to achieve there. For example, “I will use Facebook as our primary channel because our audience spends the most time there and we’ll use advertising to target a specific audience segment to grow our email list.” Or, “I will use Instagram to give a behind the scenes view of my business to increase my know/like/trust factor and make me and my business more approachable and real for my target clients.”
CONTENT & CALENDAR: Don’t Plan to Fail, Plan Your Content
Without great content, you won’t be able to achieve the goals you set out for your business, but we also don’t want to be spending countless hours creating content, no matter how great it is!
Once a month, think through all the topics and themes you are going to want to feature on your social profiles for the next month and lay them out on a calendar. Next, pick a day and time each week when you feel most creative or inspired or have the most energy and make this your content creation time!
During this time, batch your content creation and develop copy, images and posts for the week. Use a scheduling tool to maximize your “Content Factory” effectiveness and get all those posts scheduled out for the week.
You can always add posts as you’re going through the week as you feel inspired or as things come up, but by creating posts in advance, you know you’ll always have good content going out to your audience to keep them entertained and engaged.
Not sure what to post? Consider following the “Rule of Thirds”:
- one-third posts promoting your business or giving an “insider’s view”,
- one-third sharing ideas or stories from thought leaders in your industry, and
- one-third posts to develop personal interactions with your audience (e.g., questions, polls, fill-in-the-blank)
SIMPLE JUMPSTART: Develop your themes and topics for the next month and schedule into your calendar your “content creation factory” time for the next 4 weeks.
Just remember, your social media strategy isn’t written in stone, so if something starts feeling off or you’re not getting the results you want from your time and energy investment, stop and evaluate what is and isn’t working for you.
As you move forward, you may discover that some tactics, posting styles or platforms aren’t working as well as you thought they would.
Be open to change and remember – it’s about PROGRESS not PERFECTION!
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About Mary Czarnecki
Mary Czarnecki is an Online Marketing and Branding Strategist with more than 15 years’ experience in marketing, brand strategy and business development with such companies as WebMD and Johnson & Johnson. She is passionate about helping entrepreneurs ramp up their business’ growth with a strategic online presence and social media marketing. Marketing Strategist by day, Chief Monster Hunter by night, she is growing her business and family in the heart of Oregon’s Willamette Valley wine country. Find her on Facebook here http://bit.ly/maryFB or over at www.MaryCzarnecki.com.