Building a social media marketing plan
– Historically, online marketing was a fairly one-sided approach. Businesses pushed ideas out and consumers passively received them. But that landscape has shifted. The internet has become extremely interactive. Social media has created a new style of communication,and there are now billions of conversations happening online. People are discussing popular news articles, sharing photos of their pets, and even engaging with brands. And it all feels relatively natural to the consumer. It’s just part of how the web operates. All of these conversations, however, present exciting opportunities for marketers.
We can join in on a conversation to drive brand awareness or create our own conversations and empower our customers to do the marketing for us. Done right, social media has the potential to transform your business. However, it’ll require a good strategy, some creativity, and a little bit of luck. Done wrong, then social media might bring unwanted attention,which could potentially harm your business or your brand image. Typically, when we talk about social media, we’re talking about the natural approach of distributing content.
But it’s more than just sharing updates. Because people share so much information on social media, we can buy some of the most targeted advertisements available on the web.Looking to sell a product to a new mom? Facebook has a targeting option for that. Want to offer help when a customer is complaining about your brand? Twitter has a search feature for that. For many brands, social media will be a must-have component of their digital marketing strategy. Your social media might feature the major networks, or it could be as simple as a blog, a customer forum, or even Reddit.
The biggest platforms in use right now are YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest,Snapchat, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Each of these networks is unique and has its own best practices, style, and audience. So keep this in mind as we develop our plan. Your social media plan will simply expand on the marketing plan that we designed at the start of this course. I’ll show you what I mean in just a minute, but first I want to clarify a few things. So open up a new document or pull out a piece of paper and make note of the following.
How much time can you or your team spend on social networks? You need to plan at least 30 minutes a day. You’ve got to remember that you need to write copy, design or find images to support your message, and then evaluate your results so you can improve the strategy. Next, think about what resources you have available. Are you doing this yourself?Can you train someone on your team to help you? Will you hire a freelancer? Once you factor in the time requirement, you might decide it’s worth it to pull in more help. And finally, pencil out your budget.
What are you planning to spend? You need to attract followers and this can be challengingwithout investing in paid advertising. Even if you’re not doing any paid ads, make sure you still factor the time you or your team will be spending. Calculate the hourly rate and include that as a part of your spend. If you are doing paid ads, I would try to allocate at least $500 a month, especially at the start when you’re trying new things and exploring how your spend is most efficiently used. So at this point, let’s pull up one piece of the strategy we built earlier.
Here we listed three channels and the three medias for an audience segment. For our social media plan, we need to expand on these even further. So one part of our plan is to post three times a week on the supplement H+ provides. For that idea, start by defining the budget, the action items, the schedule, and your KPIs for each. How you decide to build your plan will be unique to your workflow. But always design your plan with the idea that you want to test new concepts.
So if we were posting three times a week, I might try posts with images, without images, and in different time slots. Analyze the results and adjust the plan to align with your findings. Everything that we’ve done up to this point has been for a specific audience. And social media is no different. Be sure you’re talking to a specific audience and not being too broad in your approach. Social media is a moving target. If you’re able to adapt and scale alongside of it, your brand will benefit in the long term.