In business, you can’t be all things to all people. The same goes for social media. Many businesses make the mistake of thinking that being on as many social media platforms as possible will increase their chances of reaching the most people.
In reality, you’re likely to end up reaching people who have no interest in or need for your product or service – and that’s a dead-end when it comes to generating useful leads. So, if your typical customer is over 50 and you’ve been trying to build momentum on Snapchat, it’s time to rethink your approach. Take a step back and ask yourself, “What social media platforms does my target customer frequent?”
Then, think about which social media platforms could highlight your business offering best. For example, if you’re a florist, it makes sense to be on Instagram, where you can visually showcase your products. If you operate in the B2B space, LinkedIn could be beneficial for reaching new customers.
Above all, it’s more effective to pick one or two relevant platforms to focus on rather than trying to be everywhere at once.
Nail your message
Just like any other business marketing plan, a social media strategy starts with getting inside the minds of your target customers. What are their primary wants and needs? What problems do they need to be solved?
If you don’t already have one, create a profile of the type of person you want to target. Include as many details as possible, such as:
- marital status.
From here, you can begin to understand your audience’s motivations and what messages and types of content will resonate most with them. For example, if your target audience is new mums, they’ll likely be looking for ways to save time and cut down on their workload. With this in mind, your primary message could revolve around how your product or service can save time and make life easier.
Aim to use a tone of voice your target customer resonates with, and remember that it’s your job as a business to be informative, helpful and approachable.
Set achievable objectives
Goal-setting is one of the most important steps in developing a successful social media strategy. After all, if you don’t know what you’re trying to achieve, how can you measure success?
When defining your social media objectives, start with goals that you’d like to achieve in the near future, for example over the course of six months or a year. It’s a good idea to align these goals with your overall business objectives.
Also consider what immediate actions you’ll need to take to achieve your long-term objectives. For example, your objective might be to increase referrals from social media to your website by 40% within the next year with a 10% increase in conversions. To help achieve that, you might decide to ramp up your social posting frequency and content creation efforts, or even look at allocating some of your marketing budget to social media advertising. When working on your social media plan, make sure every post ties back to your goals in some way.
Measure and refine
Once you have your social media objectives in place, check in regularly to see how you’re tracking. Set aside some time once a week to review your key metrics – such as engagement, website traffic and sales – and record your results.
Remember that even the most well-established businesses are constantly testing and learning when it comes to social media, so don’t be disheartened if you don’t see the results you’d like right away.
Most importantly, use the insights you gather to fine-tune your social media management approach so that, over time, your social media strategy hits the right notes and helps you achieve your overall business objectives.