Social Media Marketing for Startups: The Basics 3 - Social Media Strategy: Part 3

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Remember when we told you that planning is a vital part of social media marketing? It’s time to put that into practice.

If you’ve been following our blog series then hopefully you’ve already created some S.M.A.R.T. goals for your business and you’ve performed a social media audit, pinpointing and assessing your core audience.

If not, why not start at the beginning? We have a full series on creating a working strategy that can offer a huge boost to your business's social media presence.

Now it’s time to whip up the perfect strategy to start building your community and increase your social media reach.

Let’s get to work.

Plan Prudently

Successful social media marketing is the perfect blend of business promotion, community engagement, and original content. So, how do you strike that balance?

Social media users are turned off by accounts that exclusively rely on hard sales techniques or appear too corporate — so it’s important that you focus on the quality not the quantity of your posts.

It’s better to deliver a well planned and executed daily post than to flood your users with bursts of activity. The truth is no-one likes their feed being clogged up by a single user and it’s currently one of the most significant factors in losing followers.

If you only have a set period of time a week to create and share social media posts, consider using a scheduler like Buffer or Hootsuite to schedule and space out your posts.

There are a range of tools like Hootsuite that can help you manage your time more efficiently. If you need some suggestions, take a look at some of our previous posts:

A good rule of thumb when strategising content and frequency is to remember the rule of thirds.

We suggest your content is:

  • ⅓ promoting your business — this can cover sales pitches, promotions, welcome offers, anything that you imagine will convert a follower into a customer.

  • ⅓ content sharing from thought leaders and influencers — social media is all about community. Build one by sharing and discussing ideas and posts with others in your sphere.

  • ⅓ original content — this is where it gets fun. The truth is, original content is your single most powerful tool when attracting new followers and customers. If you can create images, videos or articles that entertain and spark engagement it will do more for your business than any sales pitch or advert. It’s the power of social media.

Develop Your Strategy

At Social INK, we follow our own advice. We’ve developed our own strategy using our experience and carefully-analysed data from analytics. We know what works for us, and we use that information to create spreadsheets that allow us to plan for the week ahead.

We know the word spreadsheet can strike fear into even the bravest of hearts. They have a bit of a reputation, don’t they?

But, if you want to create and maintain a successful marketing strategy then we recommend you start familiarising yourself with Excel or Google Sheets. They’re a great place to record the frequency, type of content, useful links, and who is responsible for creating and sharing content.

Download our free, easy-to-use template here

If you want to dig deeper you can even use a spreadsheet to record and log how your posts have performed on social media.

We strongly recommend getting to grips with an analytics tool to assess the performance and reach of your posts. It can be as simple or in-depth as you want. If you want to just see the basics then an inbuilt tool like Facebook or Instagram Insights, or Twitter Analytics, can show you a brief analysis of audience demographics and performance. If you want more information Google Analytics can generate reports that analyse a number of factors.

It’s also a good idea when planning to examine your core mission, values, and brand goals.

Are your posts moving you closer to these goals? If not, it might be worth reexamining your plan to include ways that you can.

Review and Refine

The truth is a good strategy isn’t static. It’s always evolving. It moves with your business and its changing needs and demands.

No business ever succeeded by refusing to evolve. Learning who your community is, and which of your posts they respond to and engage with, is the key to successful social media marketing, and it’s different for every business.

Taking the time to examine how your marketing strategy is performing is vitally important. You may be investing time, energy, and even money if you’re delving into post promotion or working with influencers. So don’t waste that investment. Make sure you are creating quality content that is being delivered to your core audience.

Incorporating a quarterly review into your strategy is a great time to examine:

  • What worked well?

  • What didn’t work?

  • What are our next goals?

Understanding your successes and failures can help you mature your strategy and build and maintain the loyal community that your business deserves.

What’s Next?

Next, in this Social Media Marketing for Startups series, we’ll be delving a little bit deeper into planning and examining how a content plan can save you time and help you to deliver on-brand and consistent content to engage your audience.

Remember

We’re here to help. Your focus should be your business. Let us look after your social media marketing. Reach out and find out how we can help your business succeed.

We want to help every SME gain a foothold in the digital landscape and leverage social media for growth and success. If you need some extra guidance, drop Social INK a line. We offer a no obligation free consultation and proposal to help boost your business. Get in touch with us for a quick chat — we’re a friendly bunch and we’d love to hear from you!