Strategizing is one of the most important components of being successful in just about anything. Without a strategy, without a plan, you cannot expect to achieve the goals you are aiming for. The same holds true with social media marketing. If you do not develop a social media strategy, you cannot expect to reap its benefits for your business. In other words, in order for you to be powerful and authoritative online, particularly on social media platforms, you have to have a strategy.
So to help you get started on your marketing efforts through the use of social media, here are the nine steps you need to take.
Step 1 – Create a Proposition
First and foremost, figure out what your business is all about. Do you sell products? If so, then what are they? Is it involved in the provision of services? If so, what are these services? Being able to answer these questions as accurately as possible is the first crucial step to creating an effective social media strategy.
Here are the key points to consider when performing this step.
- The qualities that make your products/services valuable to consumers.
- The qualities that make them unique, one-of-a-kind, or different from the competition.
- The qualities that make them more preferable than the competition.
- The qualities that resolve potential problems experienced by consumers.
List down everything that you think is a good idea. In fact, list down all the ideas that you come up with. All these are going to help you create your marketing strategy along the way.
Step 2 – Figure Out Who Your Audience Really Is
Who do you want to sell your products or services to? If you are selling baby products, then your target audience is obviously comprised of parents. If you are offering home renovation services, then your audience is composed of home and property owners.
In a nutshell, you have to figure out who your target audience is, based on the products or services you are offering, so that you can tailor your social media marketing campaigns depending on their wants and needs.
Step 3 – Create a Personality for Your Brand
How do you want your target audience to perceive your business? Do you want to make your business appear serious and professional, or do you want it to be regarded as funny yet still informative? This is an important question to answer, as your answer is going to serve as the personality of your brand. Again, make sure that it is appropriate for and tailored to your target audience.
Step 4 – Find Out Who Your Competitors Are
It is highly possible that your major competitors are already taking advantage of social media to promote their products or services. So go find out who they are. It is wise to invest some of your time researching these parties and checking out how they are doing online, particularly when it comes to their social media properties.
By doing this, you can achieve the following:
- Determine what your competitors are implementing as their social media strategy.
- Determine what your competitors are doing that has given them great results, in terms of social media marketing.
- Determine what your competitors have done that has resulted in poor marketing performance.
- Be able to repurpose successful campaigns and inject your brand’s own personality and touch to them.
Step 5 – Listen to What Your Audience Is Saying
Once you have figured out who your target audience and competitors are, the next thing you need to do is to listen to what they are saying. Does your audience often talk about your competition? If so, then what do they have to say? Whether it is positive or negative, listen to it. The information you can gather is going to be helpful as you build your brand even further through the help of social media.
Step 6 – Start Developing Your Empire
There are dozens and dozens of social media platforms nowadays, and you want to make sure that you establish your business in those where your target audience is active on. Of course, it is already a given that many of them are probably highly active on the five leading networks, including Facebook, Twitter, Google +, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. Prioritize these and build your powerhouses on these networks, but don’t forget that there are several others you can effectively implement your social media marketing campaigns on.
Step 7 – Come Up with an Appropriate Message
For every social media property that you own, you should have a different messaging strategy. How you construct the message should be dependent on the platform you are going to push it on. While in some cases, the message you post on Facebook can work on Twitter, you should still make some changes to how it is delivered. This way, each post is unique, but is still consistent in terms of content.
Step 8 – Use the Right Key Words
Your target audience is going to find you not only through search engines, but also through social media. They do this by using search terms, more popularly known as key words, key terms, or key phrases. So when coming up with content marketing strategies, make sure that you have researched which key words are going to fit the bill perfectly. They should be relevant to your brand.
One very important thing to keep in mind, though, is to use these key words wisely though, as you do not want your content to be overpowered by them. Aside from appearing unnatural, too much keyword density may lead to your site or social media property being penalized by search engines.
Step 9 – Remember to Blog As Often As You Can
A successful social media marketing campaign is also dependent on the type of posts and content you share. As much as possible, you want the things you share on your social media properties to be those that you own, and those that are going to drive traffic to your site. This is why it is important for you to blog as often as you can, and if possible, do it on your own site.