Five Key Components of a Successful Social Media Marketing PlanDigital Marketing • Business Tips • Social Media • Published at 05/11/2020 • 6 min. read
Getting started is often the hardest part in any process. With so much for you to think about, we pulled this handy guide together to help you hit the ground running with your social media marketing plan.
Without doubt, social media is a crucial part of any marketing strategy - in fact some companies rely solely on it to generate new business. While it presents a multitude of opportunity, it can also be tricky to get right. If you're not sure where to start or want to check if you're on the right track, read on for our top five components of a successful social media marketing plan.
It sounds really obvious, but it’s so important to get the content right. Before you post anything, be sure about what you are trying to achieve.
Are you looking to generate sales? Create awareness? Connect with your customers? Keep up with the competition? Your answer is probably - ‘All of the above!’
But even if your ultimate goal is to sell, you won’t achieve that with poor content. People are inundated with advertising messages every single second of every single day. They do not have time to consume or engage with subpar content.
Generating quality content doesn’t need to cost a penny – that’s why anyone can compete with the big players, no matter what market you are in. But execution is critical.
Spend time thinking about different ways you can engage with your community (or build one!) by posting useful content that adds value for your potential client or customer.
Remember YOU are the expert in your field. What interesting insight or anecdote can you share on social media?
People buy from people, whether you are selling a product or a service – so remember to add personality to your posts and be confident with what you do.
If in doubt, ask yourself – ‘If I was a potential customer, would I click on this post?’
Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you need to be on every single social media platform.
It’s more worthwhile spending your time running one social media account really well, than spreading yourself thinly across five different accounts (although scheduling tools make life much easier here!)
Your brand, product, service, goal will help determine which social media networks you should be focussing your efforts on. Ask yourself – where are my customers? That’s where you should be.
If you’re in B2B, LinkedIn is essential. If you’re selling clothing and lifestyle products, it’s Facebook and Instagram. Perhaps you’re offering a great service that lends itself better to the clientele on Pinterest?
And don’t forget email marketing. It’s old school, but it works when done well. This can be the backbone of any good social media marketing plan. Avoid being spam-y and hopefully you’ll dodge the Junk bin.
Now you’ve got your content and platforms at the ready, you’ll be excited to launch into the lucrative world of social media. But don’t spend everything you have all at once!
Instead, bank content and release it sparingly so that you build up consistency and don’t end up leaving your accounts stale when you run out of ideas because you’ve posted ten times a day for a week.
How often should you post on social media? That’s the golden question, unfortunately the answer is not so sexy – it depends. It depends on the platform and the algorithm that each platform uses.
As a rough guide, we’d suggest posting via your account at least 3 times per week, but not exceeding 9 – frequent posting can become annoying for your community and you could do more damage by losing followers or being blocked.
If you do post a lot and are not generating any interest, try posting less and instead focus on creating engaging posts that encourage interaction with your community. Then spend your time reacting to comments. This helps to build quality relationships and not only will you benefit from the advocacy, you’ll likely be favoured in rankings too.
Being consistent is fundamental in any marketing plan. Even if things are slow to take off, stick with it. The more consistent you are, the more credit you’ll accrue with the algorithms and the community you are beginning to build.
Don’t stop posting even if you are getting 0 likes, no comments and zero sales… they will come! Do analyse your posts and question why you might not be receiving any engagement – if you have followers and connections but nobody is interacting with your post then there may be a problem.
Follow our tips for generating quality content and you should see an increase in engagement.
Being consistent does not mean doing the same thing repetitively. Try scheduling a variety of different types of content and see which treatment generates the most engagement – then do more of that!
It’s already been said, but we’ll say it again – engage, engage, engage! Monitor your posts for comments and actively respond to your customers and clients. Social media is a customer service tool as much as it is a networking and advertising tool.
Your community can see how you engage and deal with both positive feedback and criticism. How many companies have you seen go viral for their clever interaction on social media? However, social media engagement done badly can generate bad publicity and may ultimately lead to the downfall of your business so don't let emotion get the better of you.
The bottom line is, engagement will help you to build trust among your community since you're showing you're active and care about what your customers have to say - whether good or bad. Handling a negative review or comment well will leave you looking much better than if you ignore it and do nothing. It may even lead to more business since customers can see you're willing to address and respond to issues.
In a time when customer reviews and recommendations are overtaking the power of any organic or paid-for ad, you really cannot afford to neglect building a robust rapport with your community. You should actively seek out problems and look to solve them - become known as the solution provider.
That wraps up our recommendations for setting out on your social media marketing plan. It's an exciting time, be open to learn and don't forget to have fun with it!