7 Tips to Running an Effective Social Media Strategy

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The following post is a guest post from social media marketing professional, Lisa Henderson of Simply Social_LA.

You’ve heard  great things about integrating social media into your business. You’ve heard all about it’s benefits and you’re thinking you’re ready to go for it.  BUT, where do you start? The world of social media can be a little overwhelming. Sure you can throw yourself into Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest, but unless you have an effective social media strategy, you really aren’t helping yourself or your brand.

I want to share some tips to help get you on the right foot with social media marketing. My tips are simple, yet effective and will help your brand get ready to rock your social media strategy. Let’s get started!

1. Know Your Target Market

First mistake in marketing is trying to market to everybody with a pulse.  When running your social media strategy, know your target market and who you are trying to access.  When you try to market to everybody, you are missing the whole point of being a brand and being unique. People are not paying attention to things that do not interest them and if you try to market your brand to someone who has zero interest in what you are offering, you are throwing your marketing dollars and efforts out the window.  Instead of being a little fish in a big pond, be the big fish in a little pond.

2. Set Social Media Strategy Goals

When you launch your strategy, you want to have your goals in mind. Is the point of this strategy to gain more visibility with followers on your social media pages?  Want to get 500 new email addresses for your mailing list? Are you seeking to drive new customers to your website by offering a “members only” discount?  Using your goals as a benchmark will determine if your social media strategy is performing successfully and will help you to tweak changes as it progresses.

3. Choose the best platform to reach your audience

You will be most effective if you know which platform your audience is using. Social media strategies are not one size fits all so choose the platform where your market is most actively engaged and meet them where they are.  If Facebook and Twitter are where you are connecting with your audience then that is where you should start to  focus your efforts.  Remember, you can always cross-promote your campaign on your other platforms.

4. Keep Your Brand Consistent

Do not make the mistake of offering a product or service that has nothing to do with your business.  For example, a local restaurant, looking to attract more customers may offer a free dinner for two with the winner being chosen randomly from new signups to their email list.  However, it would not make much sense for them to offer tickets to Disneyland.  Right? Make sure your offers are  aligned with your brand.

5. Organization is the Key to Success

When planning your social media strategy,  assign roles to team members and know your start/end date.  Be clear on who will be running the overall campaign, who will be making sure you are hitting your goals, which team member will be responsible for providing fresh content and scheduling that content, and who will be posting daily updates and responding to comments in real time.  You want to see ROI and one of the best ways this can be achieved is by being organized.

6. Promote Your Campaign

Tweet, email, and post about your campaign. Highlight it on your website. Most likely, you already have a presence on social media.  Use your platforms to cross promote.  By cross promoting, more people have the opportunity to get involved with your campaign, talk about it online and offline and share it with their network of friends.  Although many companies pay for promoted posts, word of mouth is very powerful and often the best form of referrals and exposure.

7. Post Updates

Make it a point to post entertaining, interesting, and fun updates.  If you are posting regularly, people start to become more aware of your brand, and your community can begin to grow. Get your audience involved through your social media strategy. Give them a reason to come back and share your awesome content with their friends.

A well-thought out social media strategy is crucial to building brand awareness and growing your community. The best social media strategies use relevant and authentic content to engage their audience, while also promoting their product or service.

What do you include in your social media marketing strategy?

 

LisaH3 For more tips from Lisa Henderson or Simply Social_LA check her out on Twitter or connect with her on LinkedIn.