How To Create Your Social Media Strategy
Showing up consistently, content creation and visibility is a huge part for a lot of online businesses.
When you are first faced with the task of marketing yourself on social media it can be very daunting. Whether you are a new business owner or a more established business you need a strategy, one which suits you and your business. There are many different social media platforms, so it could be overwhelming to understand which platform is best to spend your time on. Social media marketing can take up a large chunk of your precious time, so you want to develop a strategy which is effective and proves successful in gaining you more clients.
Social media platforms are also a great place to create an audience for your brand and grow your own community of followers. As in any business, people have to have a certain amount of trust in a business to buy from them, social media is perfect for building trust. Trust can be easily built through your message, valuable content and knowledge.
Strategies to think about when it comes to social media:
Before you start, think about your goals, what is it you want to achieve with being present on different social media? Why are you posting on social media? (As with anything… we want to be strategic with our work, doing something without a goal is like starting to run towards something without having defined our destination.)
Ultimately, your goal is most likely to make money. But, you may want to also establish your business and personal brand, be seen as an expert, create an audience and have a community of people who are potential clients.
With setting goals comes the decision on how often you want to post. You have to be consistent in showing up, especially if you want to grow an audience. The priority should be where you want to grow your main audience and community. You should have a goal to show up on one platform at least once a day, then other platforms may be just to show once a week (for example uploading a YouTube video or a podcast).
2. What social media platforms do you want to use?
They are so many different platforms to use and you don’t want to or need to use ALL of them, that would be very overwhelming trying to be consistent and visible. You need to choose the social media platform based on where your ideal clients are, not just the platform you enjoy most. So don’t forget to do the research here!
However… You want to be authentic to what fits you, so if there’s a platform you really don’t enjoy then maybe that’s not where you should engage and post on. Do what works for you and your business, not just what everyone else is doing or what people tell you to do.
3. Unique Content
Once you’ve decided which platforms you’re going to be present on, you need to consider what are your goals for the different platforms? How are you going to show up on each platform?
Be strategic around how you are using the different platforms. Because you want to use unique content on each of them. You shouldn’t write one post that is the same on each platform. Instead your content should be adapted to each individual platform, depending on what that platform is about.
For example, LinkedIn is more professional and Instagram is more personal. The way you address your audience on both platforms would be slightly different. Also, on LinkedIn you would most likely focus on business topics, whereas on Instagram you can also discuss wider topics and give more of a personal insight into your own life and what you’re up to aside from working.
Example: Yes you COULD upload your Facebook Lives to YouTube … better than not doing anything at all on YouTube but creating unique videos for YouTube would still perform better!
Although your content should be different for each platform, it doesn’t mean it has to be completely different. To save yourself time on content creation, you can REPURPOSE content.
If you create one post which you publish on Facebook, this post can also be posted on LinkedIn. It’ll just require changing the language slightly, such as how you address the audience and maybe using more industry terms. You need to speak to the environment of the individual social media platform.
Example: Instead of simply uploading your Facebook Live you could add an intro explaining what the video is about and an outro that they should be following your Facebook group.
Remember your message and authenticity is the same across all platforms, being YOU is still the core thing!
5. Content Planning
How can you plan your content so that it doesn’t feel extremely overwhelming or doesn’t cost you too much time? This is the key question many people have when it comes to social media marketing. Obviously planning out content and scheduling saves you time, but also ensures more thought out carefully curated content, rather than just quickly creating content everyday.
To plan out a weeks content at one time, there’s lots of platforms which makes it easier - decide what works for you, if this means planning 3 days or a whole week. And maybe that also means starting off with just two platforms (but then be good and consistent at them!), then you can always add more platforms that you show up on once you feel like you’ve mastered the other two.
How I personally use social media
As a business strategist, the main platform I show up on the most consistently is Facebook. This is where I have grown my own community, my tribe of followers who trust my expertise and knowledge.
Personally I thought HOW do I want to show with regards to what content do I want to share. I basically built it around a scale from ‘personal / fun / travel’ to ‘professional’ starting with Instagram and ending with LinkedIn.
I use Instagram to mainly share about my freedom lifestyle and travelling as they are more popular and engaging topics on that platform. And I feel it is more about the photos than the my insightful tips on business building anyway.
I have started my own YouTube channel, which I post on once a week. The channel is about being a digital nomad and building your online business. So it is ‘more professional’ than Instagram but I still want it to be super fun and travel related of some sort (you will not see me doing a ‘what to pack for my trip’ video though).
I use Facebook to show up every day as my main platform with posts and Facebook lives, my main priority is to give lots of value and to inspire action. I mainly discuss topics about business, my own business success but also share part of my personal story.
Another platform I use is LinkedIn, where I position myself as an expert, the authority and business owner. I only talk about business topics, advice for new and established business owners and how to scale your business. I also heavily use it to secure speaking gigs as well as publishing in blogs and magazines.
I also use Pinterest, this is mainly to repurpose and circulate my blog content, to drive more traffic to my site. And of course I am building my email list but see this apart from the other social media channels.
A big PS here: This didn't come all NATURALLY and over night to me. It took some planning and definitely some getting used to always showing up consistently.
Don’t feel overwhelmed. Do what you feel confident doing, think about your goals, the different clients you’re reaching on the platforms, how you’re specifically targeting them and going to speak to them. Start with less as you can always add more. I personally think there is nothing more frustrating than starting on 10 platforms and only managing to upload one blog post, one podcast episode and YouTube video every couple of months. So start small and grow instead of starting big and losing control!
What do you struggle with in your social media strategy?
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