Social media is certainly the place to be. Especially if you’re a marketer trying to reach your customers.
From Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn to YouTube, Pinterest and other social channels, billions of folks around the globe are on a social network every single second.
They are watching videos, sharing links, posting updates, chatting with each other, posting photos, and interacting with each other on virtually every topic under the Sun.
While there are uncountable “fishes” in the social sea, diving in without a social media marketing plan can be suicidal.
You’ll not only face tonnes of competition in the crowded online ocean; you’ll need to make your content and campaigns attractive and relevant to trigger the right actions from your audience.
What can you do to build your brand and attract customers on social media?
Begin by crafting a social media marketing strategy. Follow my 8 foundational steps to pave the way to greater marketing success on social media.
#1 Develop a Customer Avatar
First and perhaps most importantly, you need to know who you’re serving. This is where creating a detailed customer profile or avatar (think James Cameron’s blockbuster film) comes in.
In crafting your customer persona, consider the following factors:
Your key goal in fleshing out your customer profile is to zoom in on the following:
Here’s one way to visualise your customer persona (you can find more in my article here.)
Courtesy of mintent
#2 Conduct a Social Media Audit
Before you embark on any social media campaign, you need to know how your online environment is like.
There are several things you need to do here, both qualitative and quantitative:
(Read my article on the best free tools to strengthen your social media audit efforts.)
#3 Establish Social Media Marketing Goals
After understanding your broad landscape, it is time to determine your goals.
Here it is useful to consider your customer journey and digital marketing funnel (see below), and trace your customer’s buying journey.
In social media marketing, there are five main objectives which you’ll want to consider:
#4 Choose the Right Channels and Content Types
After you’ve decided on what you hope to achieve, you need to choose the best channels and content types for the job.
Different social media platforms have different strengths. Here are some pointers you need to consider for each:
#5 Craft Social Media Content
Developing content which resonates with your audience is both an art and a science.
Each content format has its own unique qualities:
When crafting content on social media, you need to consider two important points:
(To learn the nuances on crafting social media content, consider signing up for my course here.)
#6 Trigger Conversion
While going viral is a good outcome on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, it does nothing for your brand if you cannot convert audiences to become your customers.
Here, I’d like to introduce the trinity of conversion type content for virtually all digital campaigns:
#7 Measure Social Media Metrics
As with anything digital, the outcomes of your social media marketing efforts can be easily traced and tracked.
From Facebook to Twitter to LinkedIn to Instagram, virtually every social network offers a free analytics tool. If you use Google Analytics on your website, you can also trace the entire journey of your online customer from awareness to acquisition to conversion.
You can also put in place mechanisms to determine what your social media ROI is like.
Here’s a look at some of the possible metrics that you can use, mapped against the marketing funnel.
#8 Manage Social Media Communities
Last, but certainly not least, you need to have a way of managing and growing your social media communities.
The goal here is to foster loyalty and advocacy, as well as to increase your customer lifetime value. Building strong customer relationships also helps you to reduce your future cost of customer acquisition.
There are four stages here that you need to be aware of:
I hope that this article has been useful for you in charting out a social media marketing plan. Naturally, there are a lot of other factors which you need to consider, and I encourage you to read my other articles to learn more.
More in My Social Media Marketing Course
What I’ve covered is just a sample of what you can learn in my two-day social media marketing workshop. Enroll in my training programme and enjoy the following benefits: