Creating a social media marketing plan can seem like an intimidating thing to do, but this plan breaks down the basics into a more manageable format - especially for first-timers!
Identify your target demographics & ideal customer
Who are they? What stage of life are they in? How old are they? Where do they live? What pain points do they face that you can address? Getting an in-depth picture of their values, lifestyle, and priorities will help you to understand how best to serve their needs.
Where can you find them and how do you reach them? For example, if you are targeting Gen Z then Tiktok would be the perfect platform for you, whereas if you are targeting Gen X then Instagram and Facebook might be better choices.
Why would they buy from you, rather than your competitor (if there is one)? Remember, profits are what businesses get in return for providing value for their customers. What value does your business provide?
Knowing your customers inside and out will allow you to hone your targeting strategy and give you insights on how best to market to them where they are. Creating an ideal customer is a great exercise to do to truly understand the human beings you are trying to communicate with.
Write a mission statement for your brand
A good mission statement should clearly define a company’s goals and values. It should be short, easy to remember, and can be used as a reference for all employees. The goal of the mission statement is to provide guidance for every decision made by the brand and its employees.
Here are some tips on writing a successful mission statement:
Decide whether you want your mission statement to focus on customers or employees. For example, if your company sells software that helps people manage their finances, then you might write a customer-focused mission statement like this:
“Our goal is to help our customers achieve financial balance through the use of our software application."
On the other hand, if you work at an accounting firm where clients hire you based on your expertise in tax law rather than because they need help managing their money better, then it would make more sense for your company's mission statement to focus on how well trained and knowledgeable its staff members are when it comes time for them to assist customers with their tax returns (and thus take advantage of these services).
Keep things simple! Don't try too hard when writing an effective one-sentence description about what makes up this purposeful action plan; just start typing until those words flow naturally onto paper without having much thought put into them beforehand--relaxed writing styles often result in better outcomes overall!
Define your social media goals and objectives
Once you've identified your target audiences, it's time to figure out what you want to do with them. This should include both short-term goals (e.g., increasing Facebook followers over the next month) and long-term objectives (e.g., double website traffic by year's end).
Your social media strategies should also be aligned with business objectives—in other words, the whole point of having a marketing plan is so that you can achieve specific business goals through social media channels. To accomplish this, make sure your objectives are measurable and realistic; use the SMART framework when creating them:
S - specific/specificity
M - measurable/measurability
A - achievable/achievability
R - relevant/relevance to overall goal or objective within timeframe defined
T - timely/in what timeframe do you want to see results?
Consider what you will post and when you plan to post it
Social media is a great way to connect with customers and grow your business. But it's also important to consider what you will post, when you plan to post it, and which platform to post it on. Each platform has different 'vibes' and different focuses. Getting to know each one of them will help you to determine what and how to post for maximum effectiveness.
There are several types of content that can be posted on social media:
Multiphoto Posts (such as carousels on Instagram)
Live streams (such as Periscope and Facebook Live)
Podcasts/audiobooks (especially if they're free!)
Using a strong mix of different content will help to keep your audience engaged and coming back for more. Be sure to keep things varied when developing your content calendar.
Write a social media action plan, including budgeting and company resources
Use the SMART framework to write a social media action plan.
Define the problem before starting on a solution.
Set goals before you start and be ambitious, but stay realistic.
A good general guideline is the 80/20 structure. That is 80% content that provides value for your followers and 20% direct selling.
Be methodical about creating and maintaining your presence on social media
Your social media presence is an extension of your brand, so it's important to stay consistent. Once you've defined the goals and objectives for your plan, it's crucial that these remain top-of-mind as you create content, including posts and images. Everything you post is a representation of your brand and its values.
Not interested in handling your social media yourself?
A social media manager can work with you to develop a social media strategy, and then implement it to give you the room to focus on other key aspects of running your business.