What’s a social media strategy? It’s a summary of everything you plan to do and post on your company’s social media. It’s the key ingredient for doing social media well. It’s the glue that keeps everything together and consistent.

Whether you want to grow your brand through social media or improve yourself as a social media marketer, starting with a strategy is crucial.

So how do you do it?

Get Some Goals

First, start with your goals. What do you want to achieve through your social media? Is it more followers, more leads, exposure to your brand? Write them down. Get ideas from your colleagues. You need a purpose for why you’re doing what you’re doing. You have no framework without your goals.

Goal examples:

  1. Increase brand awareness
  2. Drive traffic to website
  3. Build a community around your brand

Content is Key

Make a list of everything you think you should post on social media. What kind of content do you want to put out there? What is important to your business and your followers? Make sure to sprinkle in some fun posts along the way. Never make your content all business or all fun.

Research your competition. What are your competitors posting? Take that and make it better.

Content examples:

  1. Business Updates
  2. Company Values
  3. Behind the scenes
  4. Relevant Social Media Holidays

Decide your Aesthetic

Having a beautiful and cohesive aesthetic is important. Especially on Instagram. The great news is, you don’t need to be a photographer or master editor to do so. But having an aesthetic is important when turning visitors into followers. It’s the first impression your brand makes when a visitor lands on your profile.

The first step to doing this is checking out some of your favorite feeds. What do they look like? Are they bright? Are they darker and a little moody? Take a look at your own brand and decide what best represents you.

Then choose a filter. There are a ton of editing apps out there (our favorite is VSCO). Choosing the same filter for all of your photos will help keep your page looking consistent and professional. But before you even add your filter. Take a look at the photos you’re taking. Are they in good light? Quality? Being consistent in the quality and lighting is another way you can manage your aesthetic. Stay away from blurry, dark photos.

Use you Brand Voice and Personality

What does your social media communicate? Your worldview, identity, and values. Just like your brand. You want to stay consistent. Have the same voice to every post. Showcase your brands personality. Your followers want to see the real you. Is your brand a little quirky? Lean into that. Your followers will become more loyal and engaging as your brand voice and personality shine through.

Who is your Audience?

Who are you marketing to on social media? What’s their demographic? This will ultimately help what content you post. It will also aid in choosing the demographic to boost your posts on Facebook to. If you don’t know who you’re marketing to, then how will you know what to post?

Timing and Frequency

Timing is important on social media. Do your research and find the best times to post on Facebook and Instagram. According to Hubspot, you get the most organic reach before work, lunchtime, and right when the workday ends. Post timing depends on the platform you’re using, as well as how your audience interacts with the platform.

For frequency, Facebook is posting for quality over quantity. You don’t want to bombard your followers with just ok content. You want to be pushing out the best content possible. Otherwise, you’ll lose followers. We recommend posting 2-3 times a week. That way you’re still consistent, but not overwhelming your followers with new posts.

Hashtags

Creating a brand hashtag is a great way for your followers to be able to share their own content for your brand. For example, the brand Madewell uses the hashtag: #everydaymadewell. It’s where their loyal followers can share the ways in which they style clothing and accessories bought from the brand. Then it gives Madewell the chance to re-share those photos, giving their brand a down to earth, everyday life kind of feel. It also establishes some brand love. Who wouldn’t want a global brand to share their photo?

For Instagram, hashtags are also key. And I’m not just talking about your brand hashtag. Instagram recently unveiled the ability to search by hashtag. Therefore, you are broadening your reach when you use hashtags relevant to your brand. So how do you find those? Do some research. Look at competitor brands. Search words relevant to your brand. If they have a few thousand or more posts, chances are people will see your posts who aren’t in your circle, yet.

Plan Plan Plan

A social media calendar is your friend. Sit down at the beginning of each month and map out posts like social media holidays and business updates. Then sit down once a week and plan out the weekly posts for the following week. That way, you’re never scrambling for what to post and pushing out quality content.

List out what days and times you will be posting content to each channel. Plan out all of your social activities. Whether it’s a photo, link, or blog post.

Track your Metrics

You need to see if your social media strategy is working, right? Tracking your metrics is a great way to keep your strategy evolving. Maybe a post didn’t do so well. It gives you a chance to evaluate that post and make it better for next time.

Focus on target audience, leads generated, web referrals, and more. You will probably track different goals for different channels. Make note of things like followers, shares, comments, likes, website clicks, testimonials, and more.

Remember, before you start pushing out content on social media, make a plan. Without a strategy, you have no foundation.