The only way you'll reap the best rewards from your social media marketing is to have a planned, organized and applicable strategy in place.
However, many individuals and organizations struggle with this process. Even with all the evidence supporting strategy development, people still struggle with creating and maintaining one that brings positive results.
That's where these tips come into play. Give these 5 steps a try to see how they can help you develop a strategy that leads to a higher social media ROI.
1) Marketing and sales departments discuss the goals and steps to take for building an effective strategy.
Businesses will not thrive these days if the marketing and sales departments don't work together. Marketing supports sales, but if the social media staff don't know what's bringing in sales leads, how can they know what to publish?
Have your marketing and sales teams meet regularly to build a strategy that leads to increased sales. By doing this, the marketing team will know what to publish and how to act on social media to increase its ROI.
2) The strategy focuses on the social platforms where the target audience is most active, not necessarily the popular ones.
If your audience is on Twitter more than LinkedIn, focus your attention on that platform. Even if you learn that LinkedIn is more "popular" for B2B, if your specific targets are not there, you shouldn't be either.
Your social media strategy should specifically address which social platforms you'll be active on based on the buyer personas you've created from your target audience. All the other platforms are secondary for if you have the resources.
3) Social media responsibilities are formally delegated per employee position, but there's always room for merges, if necessary.
To avoid potentially disastrous confusion between your staff, you should include a delegation process in your strategy. Give each role to specific staff positions so that everyone knows what they're responsible for and nothing gets missed.
Unfortunately, there sometimes comes a need for downsizing your staff, so make sure your strategy is able to compensate for that. Leave room in each employee's responsibilities for additional work in case you need to merge positions.
4) You've targeted the necessary metrics and other measurements, and staff know how to apply what they learn from them.
Your strategy is not a strategy if you don't have an end goal(s) in mind, and you can't determine whether you've reached it unless you know what you're looking for. By thoroughly analyzing how you're going to measure your results, you give your strategy a way to prove itself.
However, there is no point in measuring the different results you receive if you don't know how to learn from them and apply that new knowledge. If you see that a specific content type is earning more engagement than any other type, apply it to your future activity. The same goes for struggling content. Don't keep using it if it's not working.
5) The strategy is completed in writing, signed with leadership approval, and leaves room for future changes.
Your strategy is an essential document for marketing, sales and your business as a whole, so it needs to be written down. Better yet, put it on company letterhead. Get a stamp of approval from company leadership. Give it a date so that you know when you need to update it.
Always remember that even with a confirmed strategy, you'll need to make changes to it regularly, especially considering how often social media trends change. Make sure your strategy allows room for such changes and is flexible for future social advancements.
With the ever-changing nature of social media marketing, you cannot afford to ignore the need for a formal strategy.
- Give your marketing and sales teams a chance to work together on something crucial to your business.
- Designate the right social networks to focus your attention so that you don't waste resources and miss opportunities.
- Assign each social media responsibility to a specific company position to ensure every aspect is covered and there's no confusion.
- Confirm that all results are properly analyzed and applied to future activity so that your teams learn from their successes and failures.
- Ensure that your strategy is established and approved in a formal document, allowing for future changes and improvements.
Keep in mind that your strategy must be a fluid, flexible document, needing regular updates to align with social media advancements.
There will never be an end to your strategy, and there will never be an end to its essential role in your overall business structure.