10 Steps to Create a Social Media Strategy for Your Business

10 Steps to Create a Social Media Strategy for Your Business

1: Outline Your Goals

The first step to creating a sound social media strategy is to outline your short and long-term goals. By doing this first, you can use your goals as a basis for measuring your success on social media. To come up with achievable goals, you can use the S.M.A.R.T. goal method, as follows:

  • S-specific
  • M-measurable
  • A-achievable
  • R-relevant
  • T-time-bound 

2: Develop Your Budget

Decide how much you want to invest on social media marketing. If you operate a small business, it could be helpful to start with a small budget designated to platform-specific analytics or advertisements. This way, you can figure out what works for your business and devote more of your budget to those areas.

3: Establish your target audience

Establishing a target audience for your social media strategy can help you determine other factors like the types of content you want to promote and which social media platforms you should use. For example, if you own a restaurant and want to draw in a younger audience, you might want to use social media to promote a free drink night or post pictures of young adult customers to convey that your restaurant appeals to that generation.

4: Review competitor profiles

Look at your competitor’s profiles and overall social media presence. For example, if you own a hair salon, make a list of other hair salons in your area and search for them on platforms like Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. This can help you establish appropriate content within your industry.

5: Choose your platforms

After establishing your target audience and reviewing your competitors’ social media presence, use your findings to determine which platforms to take on. Consider starting with one or two that resonate with your desired content and target audience. This can help you get used to just a few platforms at a time before expanding your social media presence. Some of the most popular platforms today include:

  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Snapchat
  • YouTube
  • Pinterest

6: Make your profiles consistent

By promoting uniformity across your social media platforms, you establish your company’s brand. A good example is to have the same username and profile picture for each of your accounts. This way, someone who follows you on Instagram can find your Twitter or Facebook profile with little effort. Here is an overview of how to stay consistent across social media:

  • Username
  • Profile picture
  • Background/cover photo
  • Bio
  • Posts

 7: Get organized with a social media calendar

A social media calendar establishes organization within your strategy. There is a variety of software programs designed specifically for social media planning. You can also use the calendar feature on your computer or create a handwritten calendar. Set reminders for specific posts that align with a new product launch or a holiday.

8: Create guidelines for engaging with customers

When you create an account on one or more social media platforms, you provide new, existing and potential customers with a casual setting to ask questions, give constructive feedback or praise. Create guidelines to help your staff engage with customers in a helpful and professional manner. For example, for every comment that asks a question about a product, your reply should acknowledge the commenter by name before referring them to a product page or answering their question in your response. 

9: Complete a social media audit

A social media audit is a review you conduct to determine what your social media strategy has accomplished, and which areas need reforming. Typically, you enter data like the number of followers, likes, usernames, comments and other metrics to determine the success of your social media strategy at that specific time. This audit should happen as frequently as once per week if you have the time.

 10: Allow your social media strategy to evolve

Like any good marketing strategy, you might need to adjust your social media strategy to better fit the needs of your customer base, new social media trends or other factors. For this reason, allow your company to shift and change its approach to social media for more refined results.