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Success on social media begins with strategy. Social media marketing has changed the way brands do business, so it’s important to understand how to reach the right people at the right time. Whether someone is trying to build their brand from the ground up or trying to breathe new life into an existing campaign, social media marketing is the best way to do it.

Ask Questions

Creating an effective social media marketing plan takes time. Before anything this, marketers and brands alike need to determine their goals. One of the easiest ways to get started is by asking questions. Who is the target audience, where do they spend most of their time and what type of content will boost engagement? These three questions are the stepping stones to creating a sound social media strategy.

Types of Content

In addition to knowing who to target, brands also need to decide what type of content their going to share. Some brands thrive on user-generated content while others curate every post. Determining what works best takes a trial and error approach.

No two days are ever the same online, so it’s important to tailor the content accordingly. For instance, Instagram is all about the visuals while Twitter is about being part of the conversation. The type of content will depend on which platform is utilized.

In addition to the platform and type of content, it’s also important to determine when to post. Every platform is different, so posting on Facebook on Monday afternoon may yield better results than posting on a Friday night.

Test and Analyze Results

Regardless of platform, brands can’t post simply for the sake of posting. It’s important to analyze what type of content had the highest engagement rate and which didn’t perform as well as expected. Analytic tools like Facebook and Instagram Insights show exactly what type of engagement posts received, who interacted with it and from where. Using these built-in platform analytic tools helps brands determine the next step in their marketing plan.

Creating a successful social media strategy doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a process that’s constantly changing based on analytic feedback and consumer response. But as with any kind of content, the focus needs to be on quality, not quantity.