Social media can be a significant pain point for many businesses, so how can you make sure yours gets done? Commitment and consistency are crucial to making the most of your social media, so how can you make sure your plan works and you can stick to it?
Check out our 7 easy steps to supercharge your social media planning and creation.
1. Choose your platforms
Part of the overwhelm of social media planning for businesses is the idea that you have to be across every platform to gain traction, but that’s not true. You’ll do better to focus on one or two and do it well rather than a lukewarm effort across the board. So how do you choose? Find where your customers hang out and focus on that. Also, think about the platforms you’re most comfortable with. Making it easy for yourself will help make sure you stick with it. Already got a good Facebook following, but Instagram and Twitter just aren’t producing results? Try LinkedIn or Pinterest instead. Mix and match to figure out what works for your clients. It takes time to find the right balance, but it’s worth the effort.
2. Make a plan
Planning takes away the ongoing stress of coming up with something to post daily or multiple times a day. Make a list of the different kinds of posts you want to make. You want to keep it varied, as too many of the same type of thing will have people scrolling right past you. Think about what you want people to do. Want them to buy a product? Schedule a call? Make an appointment? Gear your posts with that in mind.
Throw in a mix of video, blog posts, images, questions that inspire engagement, information, and fun. Focus on staying true to the voice of your business – you. Your customers will respond to authenticity from your brand, so keep it true to what you believe. We do that at Marketing Jumpstart by focusing on our values when planning our social media. For example, our focus on constant learning means we always have some great new information to build our posts around.
From there, make a content calendar and spread out your posts. You can always move things around later, but it helps see the big picture and know what should go where. Don’t put too much of the same thing close together. Some platforms work best if you post multiple times a day, while others need a more laid-back approach, but whatever you plan, make sure it’s doable for you. It’s better to do less consistently than to do more for a few weeks then give up.
3. Set a time
Time is a limited resource for business owners, and social media can often fall off the wagon. The best way to get around that is to schedule your posting cycle (more on that in a moment) and sneak a small amount of time daily to deal with anything that crops up. You only need a few minutes to check your social media, monitor comments, reply to questions. You could find that while you wait for the kettle to boil for your first cup of tea, between meetings, really any time that suits you, but make it consistent. Limit it to ten minutes and stick to it every day at the same time.
It sounds great to say you’ll post every day, but time in business, and life, doesn’t often work that way. So make it easy on yourself and put aside time to schedule them ahead of time. That could be a big job once a month or a small one once a week, whatever works for you. Use the tools provided by the platforms or any external sites built to centralise all your posting. If something big happens in your industry, you can post about it on the fly, but get ahead of the heavy lifting to free yourself up for other tasks.
5. Choose high impact activities
High impact activities are those which you can repurpose over and over. That podcast you spoke on, for example. You can post the link to the podcast, but you can also use small pieces of the audio to frame questions to boost audience engagement. Or a particularly insightful phrase into a great graphic. Out of one podcast, you might get twenty pieces of content that you can use over the next few months. You could write a blog post which you share, then pull out bits to expand on in a short video. You’re looking for things that you can use over and over without them getting stale.
6. Add value
The secret to a successful social presence is adding value to those who follow you. Think about the things you follow that give you great information, make you think, or show you something worthwhile. Do they have anything in common? Is that something you could bring over to your accounts? People often feel, rightly or wrongly, that social media marketing is exploitative. That colours their commitment to using it, but that only follows if you aren’t adding value to the people you’re asking to engage with you. Nobody will mind your sales posts as long as they feel they’re getting something worthwhile from the interaction.
7. Make sure all your systems work
Finally, it’s great to make sure your social media is in good shape, but it will not help you if your sales funnels and payment/appointment systems aren’t well set up. If your checkout is challenging to use, or your appointment system keeps crashing, your customer might well bounce out at that point, making all your work for nothing. Go through them yourself, or have a friend make a dummy purchase to see what’s working and what isn’t.
That was 7 easy steps to supercharge your social media planning & creation check out our other blogs such Ways to Increase Social Media Engagement if you need more social media primers.