How to Create a Social Media Plan That Works for Your Organization
Social media has evolved considerably over the past 10 years – even the past five years have shown a large change in how society as a whole interacts with social media platforms. These website and mobile apps play a large role in how businesses are able to communicate their messaging and share their products and services with the world. For this reason, it is critical that every business knows how to handle their social media presence. Having a strategy in place will make consistent brand messaging easier to achieve, and implementing a regular post schedule can help build brand awareness over time.
But where to begin?
Social Media Basics
Developing your ideal social media plan starts with understanding the basics of all social media platforms available to you. For the sake of time and clarity, we will focus this article on the more “traditional” social media platforms that can benefit businesses today:
The social media platforms you choose to utilize will highly depend upon your individual business and industry. For example, a company that sells art is more likely to rely on image-based platforms such as Instagram or Pinterest, whereas an insurance agency will likely find LinkedIn and Facebook more beneficial.
Understanding your industry, key messaging, and audiences will help you determine which platforms are best for your organization. From there, you can begin expanding your plan to include a variety of content and platforms once you have a better understanding of what works and what does not.
To some degree, social media can be a lot of trial and error. However, you can cut back a significant portion of that “error” by knowing your audiences and the appropriate platforms for your content.
Posting an Article to Social Media Channels
Let’s say, for example, that your company wrote a blog article you would like to share via social media – where do you do it? Again, this comes down to knowing which social media channel is appropriate and when. Check out our little cheat sheet below to discover when you should use each of these platforms. Just keep in mind – as we said before – that this may differ slightly depending on your company’s industry.
|Platform||Use this Social Media Platform for…|
|Sharing company news/updates/highlights|
|Sharing articles, company news, employment opportunities|
|Images, recipes, trends|
|News, interacting with your audience, customer service|
The most beneficial social media platform for posting an article is LinkedIn. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t utilize other social media platforms to generate interest and traffic to your website. While posting the full blog article may not be something feasible or practical on Facebook or Twitter, these are great platforms to announce or tease your article and provide a link to your site for readers to access your content.
Keep in mind that these announcements should be “short and sweet” – no more than 50 words in length. Use hashtags to highlight the main themes, keeping in mind what terms users might be searching to find similar content. The idea is to entice readers to want to read your blog post – this is as much a sales tool to draw new readers as it is to inform and retain your existing audience.
Should I Use Custom Images on Social Media?
The short and quick of it is yes – whenever possible, custom imagery is a great way to set your company apart from others in your industry and beyond. While stock imagery is certainly an option and can often be better than not including any photos, custom is always better. It allows your audience to better understand your company and get to know you on a more personal level with content that is unique and specific to your organization.
Is a Social Media Schedule Important?
Again, this will depend on when and how you’re using social media for your company. But, for the most part, the answer to this question is yes. Having a consistent, set schedule for posting to your social media allows your audience to anticipate when new content will be posted and, therefore, improve retention.
Having a schedule also gives you the upper hand when it comes to your content’s impact. Using tools like Google Analytics and the independent dashboards on the various social media sites, you can easily predict the day and time your content achieves the most engagement, whether that’s likes, comments, clicks – the definition of engagement can be entirely up to you and your company.
Social media is a great tool for sharing your company’s message and developing brand awareness online. Creating a social media plan is a sensible next step for any business interested in incorporating social media into your marketing and/or branding strategies. Need help creating a plan that’s just right for you? We’re happy to assist. Reach out to us at (248) 687-7888 or by email at inquiry@mediaG.com.