10 Steps To Develop Your Social Media Content Strategy
Out of all challenges the current market imposes for businesses, one is particularly interesting for us: social media leadership. Each company needs to establish itself as an authority in the world of social media. Due to the lack of a proper strategy and money constraints, that strategy often fails… miserably. What are these people doing wrong?
Content is the foundation of everything. You want people to hear your message and start seeing your company as the answer to their needs. You are looking to attract not only one-time purchases, but long-term connections. For that, you need a strategy.
What about that strategy? What aspects should it contain? How can you build it?
That’s what we’re here for today.
How to Create the Perfect Social Media Content Strategy
Mike Mitchel, a content marketing strategist for EssayOnTime, explains:
“Content is the key to success. Textual, visual, video content… everything counts. When you understand what kind of content your target audience needs and you start producing that content, you’ll develop a strong brand on social media platforms. To get there, a strategy is a must!”
How exactly do you develop the strategy for content that will be irresistible for your audience? Here are a few important tips for you to follow:
Identify Your Target Persona
Before you even create a social media profile for your brand, you should determine your target market. First, answer these questions, so you’ll narrow down the target audience by the factor of interest:
- Who is your user? Be very detailed with this answer. Define the age, gender, income level, and interests. If relevant to your business, include location.
- Where is your target user located?
- How would you like to present your brand to this user?
- Why should this person buy your products or services?
- What brands are competing for their attention?
Do a Full-Check on Your Competitors
It’s important to understand who your competitors are and how they are competing to get the attention of the same target audience. Fortunately, that’s an easy thing to do. All you need to do is analyze your competitors’ social media activities.
It will take some time for you to do this and you’ll pick up a great deal of information. So make sure to keep it organized in an Excel file. These are the Important details to pay attention to:
- The number of friends or followers on social media. You’ll want to reach that target and go above it. Better yet, get higher quality connections.
- The engagement. How many comments, shares, retweets, and likes do your competitors get on an average post? What posts attract the greatest engagement?
- The frequency of posting.
- The number and type of social channels your competitors have in their strategy.
- Identify Your Brand
Determine your brand story and the message you’re going to convey. What do you offer to your users? How is it better than what the competitors are offering?
Drafting the Content Strategy: a Step-By-Step Guide
Next, we’ll look at the steps you should take in order to create a social media content strategy that’s effective for your brand.
1. Choose the Right Channels
Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest, Instagram… the list of social media channels is huge. Each platform demands a different strategy. For business at least, Twitter is all about succinct business messaging; Instagram is about photos, and Pinterest is mostly about infographics and tutorials. Facebook is a combination of all these factors.
You’ll have to build an individualized strategy for each platform. So it would be best not to focus on all of them at the same time. Pick two or three and publish relevant content consistently.
2. Choose the Format
Consider using fresh content formats to make the content more digestible:
- SlideShare decks
- Live streaming
3. Set Your Goals and Create Content that Meets Them
Each piece of content you create should fit in the puzzle of your strategy. Here are few examples of goals that will help you attract the audience:
- Give solutions
- Offer a new angle on an old topic
4. Find Your Voice
You want your brand to appear as professional, but a bit of wit and humor won’t hurt. If you want to learn how to write for social media, these is the main rule to remember:
Be friendly, but not overly informal; fresh, but not immature; and fun, but not obnoxious. For example, we can see Coca Cola being a fun and fresh brand all over social media. But we don’t see any immature jokes and responses to people’s comments from them.
5. Hook the Audience
You can achieve engagement through smart calls to action, motivational messages, hashtags, catchy images, and unique voice that attract the audience.
Check LEGO’s Facebook page and you’ll realize that all those elements are present.
6. Be a Leader
Here is a proven recipe: always provide content that’s relevant to the current issues your audience is facing. The content should be fact-driven, and it has to include visual elements.
Here are few tools to help you with that:
- Buzzsumo – It shows you the topics that are currently attracting the attention of your target audience.
- Quora – See the questions your target users ask and answer them through the content you present via social media.
- AllTop – It will provide a list of trendy posts based on your keywords. Use those insights to cover the same topics, but find a fresh angle and do it better than your competitors.
- Flipboard – A site with high-quality content on various topics. Check the style and format and learn from it.
7. Be an Active Listener
Your strategy should be based on active listening. Your audience is sharing vital insights, so you can easily figure out what they want you to talk about and what solutions they would appreciate.
8. Manage, Manage, Manage!
You need an editorial calendar, which will allow you to deliver the right doses of content at the right time.
Create a clear schedule based on your strategy. Post different types of content throughout the week and craft them in advance. Since it’s difficult to cope with all channels and answer all questions, you’ll probably need to include the development of a social media marketing team in your strategy.
9. You’re a Real Person; Not a Seller
Whenever you’re trying to sell a product via social media, you’re risking to sound like an aggressive salesman. You don’t want that. Build your strategy around the human element.
Remember: if you provide valuable solutions for the audience, they will be willing to buy. And they will do it under their own will.
10. Track and Measure
Without social media performance measurement, you don’t know what results you’re achieving. You need to analyze some insights, so you’ll make the needed changes to achieve better results. Using good tools can assist you with that goal.
You just went through a reasonably detailed guide on building a social media content strategy. This was aimed at somewhere above beginner level, so there’s much to learn from here. If you are removed from the technical or operational aspects of social media content strategy, this will hopefully have given you sufficient knowledge to understand aspects of the process.
If you have any questions or comments, please leave them in the Comments section, below.
Featured Image: Copyright: ‘https://www.123rf.com/profile_cifotart‘ / 123RF Stock Photo
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Latest posts by Rachel Bartee (see all)
- 10 Steps To Develop Your Social Media Content Strategy - August 10, 2017