Anyone can set up a Twitter account – but not everyone can see a business lift from tweeting. It all comes down to your “social media game.” Although social media initially started as a fun way to keep in touch with friends and family, it’s become a valuable business tool that can help directly increase your bottom line.
But since anyone – and everyone – is doing social these days, you have to keep your skills a cut above the rest. Keeping your social media accounts active is a first good step, but if you want to improve your game you have to go one step further – planning.
Social media planning is the key to leveraging this platform for your small business. Not only will you save time, but you’ll see better results because your approach will be more targeted and well thought out. You won’t just grab links, post and see what happens. You’ll develop a plan for connecting with your audience in a meaningful way that will build trust and lead to sales.
Best of all, your customers want you to reach out. According to research from Edelman’s annual “brandshare” report, 9 out of 10 surveyed customers want to have meaningful interactions with brands on social media.
Here are four steps you need to take each day to improve your social media game.
Your current customers are the foundation of your business, so your first priority is to interact with them regularly. Whether you’re marketing on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or a little of each, you need to take time to respond to customers on these platforms. In just a few minutes a day, you can login to each platform, reply to questions and interact with customers in meaningful ways. Accept new connections, welcome new followers and thank others for sharing your content.
Once you’ve dealt with the real time responses, the next step in your social media plan should be spying on your followers, competition and other influencers. During this phase, take note of trending topics and other popular content that would be relevant to your audience.
Next, you’ll want to schedule your posts for the day on your selected platforms. You can use scheduling tools like Sprout Social or Hootsuite to schedule posts for optimal times of day. Use your own content or select from the most popular content you discovered during your “spy” phase.
Reviewing your success on social media is key to continuing that success in the future. You need to know what types of content are doing best, which platforms are ideal for your audience and how often you should be posting. There are no absolutes when it comes to these factors – it will all depend on your unique business. Use the native analytics tools inside of each platform, or look to one of the scheduling tools for comprehensive analytics. Review these on a weekly basis and make changes to your plan.
Don’t let your social media game suffer! Interact, spy, post and review on a daily basis to create a plan that works for your small business.
About the author:
Tobi North – Creativity rock star and marketing master
I enjoy being innovative and creating communications that customers can relate to. I am always looking for that “light bulb” moment, when I find an interesting topic that I know our customers will love to learn more about. In between creative brainstorming sessions, you can probably find me at a concert or searching for the best BBQ joint in town. .