From a leadership perspective, social media can be a touchy decision. The return on investment (ROI) is hard to measure, let alone justify, and it’s not exactly clear, from a data-driven perspective, how socialization online works.
The truth is online marketing has taken the forefront of most successful business marketing plans. Leaders can’t ignore the significant impact that social media has on bringing traffic to websites, and, therefore, converting visitors into sales leads.
These valuable tools make it necessary for most executives to become managers of a social media team or agency. Let’s look at a few tips for effectively keeping everyone in check:
Develop a system of organization.
Online marketing programs are basically comprised of a generic system of posts associated with each social media channel. Depending on your business model, you’ll post to each channel a specific number of times to reach the results you want.
A social media editorial calendar often includes the number of times you plan to post to each network:
Blog 5 posts/week
Twitter 3 posts/week
Facebook 3 posts/week
Pinterest 2 photos/week
Reddit 2 items shared, etc.
You can develop these generic guidelines into a system (we like to use Excel) to keep an eye on what’s working and what’s not. Maybe your social media team keeps track of how many new likes they receive each week, or which blogs produced the most relevant inbound links, just set up some type of organization to monitor each channel of social media.
You may also consider using a cloud system, like Google docs, where you can check in as often as necessary to see updates and review links to specific posts. The busier you are, the more important it is to have links and data all in one place for your fast, easy review.
Arrange for a weekly status update.
As the leader in charge of a social media program, you don’t have time for the nitty gritty details of a daily campaign update. Assign someone as your point person to have a discussion with you once weekly. They’ll specifically report to you based on pre-arranged benchmarks.
In this case, let’s say you were trying to use crowdsourcing to develop a new product. You’re social media campaign would be focused on asking questions such as, “What frustrates you the most about grocery shopping?” The updates would review feedback to those questions and apprise you of any unexpected findings.
Don’t try to control the creative process.
The most difficult thing for most executives is to not have direct, absolute control of a process. Obviously, as a leader, this is your job, so letting go of the reins can be frustrating for both you and your team.
However, what works in social media is not as obvious to most of us as it is to the creative professionals who create posts every day. You have to let your creative team do what they do best. While making comments specific to staying on point with your brand is important, try to stay away from nitpicking the use of certain words.
Social media experts will tell you that key words often trigger the actions of consumers and are used for a reason. If you alter their formula for success, you risk not getting the results you want from a social media campaign. So, let the little things slide, even if a post isn’t phrased the way it should be for print advertising.