What works and doesn’t work on social media seems to change daily, and that can make it challenging for your business to prepare. Luckily for social media gurus and novices alike, there are some basics concepts that work well across the entire social media universe.
- Create a plan!
Having a social media strategy, like a content calendar, will keep your posts consistent and save you time. The more you build habits like snapping pictures for that upcoming post or recording a quick video when you have a few minutes will ward off the overwhelm when you need to post. With time to think it through, you can better engage with your audience.
- Have an audience focused plan.
This strategy keeps your customers engaging with you because they feel like you can help them out in some way. If you tell them what they want to hear, show them things they want to see and feature things they want to buy, you’ll definitely see success. Keep it “them” focused and not “you” focused.
- Test your strategy.
If your business is new or just new to social media, you may need to determine what works best for your industry/product/location. Choosing the correct platform, the types of posts (video vs pictures), the timing of your posts and more can all have a great effect on your engagement. The most successful digital marketers test many different strategies before determining what works. And they continue to test as things change.
- Be flexible.
Allow your social media plan to be adapted quickly. What worked before might not continue to work for your business as social media transforms over time. You may also need to work in “on the fly” posts based on surprise content. Never pass up an amazing story for your post just because it wasn’t on your plan for the week.
- Research your industry and competitors.
Take some time to study what others are doing that might work for you. While you want to avoid copying another company’s ideas or strategy, you can often use this research to springboard great ideas for your organization. If one platform seems to house all of your competitors, then your business should probably be there too. But remember, go where your audience is, always.
- Engage with people.
Remember that social media is filled with real people (AI aside) who may genuinely want what your business is offering. Speak to them like you would in person. Respond to comments and questions and create posts that a real person would want to read. Interact with your community and make it easy for them to do the same with you.
- Analyze your data.
On a monthly or quarterly basis, examine your stats. Determine if you feel like your posts and strategy was successful. Did you gain or lose followers? Increase or decrease your engagement? Did you sell anything or get anyone to sign up for newsletters or events? All of these are tangible, trackable markers that you can use to compare month to month and quarter to quarter. And then remember to adjust accordingly.
Using these best practices on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube and more will help decrease the stress that can go along with Social Media Content planning and strategies for local, national and international businesses. Even the most seasoned social media marketers need a reminder to go back to the basics and follow these tried-and-true best practices.