Updated: Apr 8, 2022
Anyone can do this social media stuff. Don’t you just throw a few pictures up each week, and you’re set?
Well, technically, yes, anyone can run a social media account if they have the time. But no, simply posting a pic is not all that’s involved in effective social media marketing. Success is only achieved when you have a plan.
What is a social media marketing plan, and why do I need one?
A social media marketing plan summarizes what you plan to do and what you hope to achieve through your social media channels. The more specific you can be, the more effective you will ultimately be.
We suggest following these five steps to create an effective social media marketing plan.
Step 1: Set SMART Goals. Quite possibly, you’re already familiar with the concept of SMART goals – an effective type of goal-setting that is Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. You also want to be intentional with your social media marketing goals, making sure they align with your business objectives.
Step 2: Learn everything you can about your audience.
Who is your target audience? How old are they? Are you primarily reaching men or women? Where do they spend their time? What do they like and dislike? What kind of habits do they have? Social media marketing is all about making those connections with your audience and helping them to understand your brand better.
Step 3: Research your competition.
We don’t want you to get too caught up in what everyone else is doing, but we do recommend doing a competitive analysis to provide insights on:
who your competitors are
where they’re hanging out online
how their strategy is working
where your own gaps are
Step 4: Conduct a social media audit.
Take a look at your existing social media platforms. What have you tried? What seems to work (or not work) for your audience? Assess your bio and profile – are you using them to your advantage? Where have you grown, and where have you missed opportunities?
Step 5: Set Your Branding and Style Guide
You’ll want to maintain consistent branding across your socials and become easily recognizable. If you don’t already have a logo, get one! Set your brand colours and style. What fonts do you prefer to use? Are there icons or mascots you want to incorporate into your marketing?
This can all feel a little overwhelming, but it doesn’t need to be done overnight! You may find you want to hire someone to perform the audits, create your logo, or do a little hashtag research. Once you’ve worked through these steps and created your plan, you’re well on your well to successful social media marketing.
Step 7: Create a Social Media Content Calendar Create a posting plan based on days of the week, or a rotation of types of posts, etc. This posting plan should act as a framework to use as you create and schedule your organic content on your social media feeds. Ensure that your posting plan has a healthy balance of sales posts vs. value-added posts.
Not sure what type of content to include in your posting plan? Check out this resource.
Step 8: Test, evaluate, and adjust your strategy Do more of what is successful for you and less of what isn't successful! Keep an eye on your statistics and adjust your strategy from there. Our team creates monthly reports for our clients, including the numbers, graphs, and recommendations for improvement going forward.
Want to talk to the STGP team about getting some help with social media for your business? Sure, book a no-pressure coffee chat with Kim, our CEO, HERE.