So, you want to put together a social media plan that:
- Doesn’t break the bank or take all day, every day, for the rest of your life
- Expresses your brand messages and
- Hey, how about this? Converts internet surfers into loyal customers and raving fans
Good luck with that!
I can’t promise you a social media plan that is:
- Cheap or free
- Low effort and
- Ultra effective at creating new fans and customers
What I can promise is a modest social media plan that will:
- Deliver results over time
- Teach you a ton about expressing your brand and services online
- Boost your networking
- Yield insights regarding your target market and
- Help you feel like the well-organized, contemporary business person you are!
Before we get going with a social media plan that works for you, the time-stressed but intelligent solopreneur, I’m going to tell you a (don’t worry, very short) story about the two kinds of social media success.
I went to the Giants’ NLCP game a couple of Thursdays ago and I posted about it on Instagram. So did my 14 year-old. Within seconds, he had 30 favorites. Me, not so many. Why? Because my son uses social media for its true purpose: being social with a small group of people he can truly call friends and the organic connections they make. Not to mention the fact that they aren’t busy making a living so they can spend their time making social media work.
I’m not jealous or bitter. When you make your social media plan (something my son would never do!), you’ll have an agenda. You social media plan, by its nature, is not “natural.” You are trying to “get” something, be it followers, customers, or cold, hard cash. That’s cool. The take home, though, is that your job is much, much harder than my son’s.
The other kind of social media success has lots of time, money, and planning behind it. Think: Coca-Cola spends millions of dollars on marketing annually using teams of experienced people.
Unless you are a social media natural or part of a team of well-paid social media marketers the more humble, receptive, and truly interested you can be in your social networks, the more successful you will be. That’s the truth, Ruth!
11 Tips for a Social Media Plan that Rocks & Rules
Ahoy, tips away!
- Make a decision: are you willing to spend more time, or more money?
- Consider who you want to reach. Is it single moms and solopreneurs or gay CEOs?
- Determine your message. Now that you know who you want to say it to, what do you want to say? Hint: You want to tell your target about your products, services, and special offers.
- Create an editorial calendar (posts planned out 6 months to a year ahead).
- Create a content warehouse, which is a place you can store URLs so that, in a pinch, you have interesting content to share.
- Make or outsource branded graphics, with calls to action (something you want them to do, such as sign up for your newsletter, give you a call, or set up a consultation). When in doubt, use a pro.
- Set up your profiles using the graphics and messaging you have put together (see above).
- Set up time each week schedule posts (check out HootSuite, Pocket, Feedly, Nimble, and Buffer — free and pro they help make your social media plan a go!).
- Publish your posts, tweets, etc. and take the time to double check them — how do they look? Especially if you are automating, posts can look less beautiful than you had hoped.
- Cross promote. You can, for example, tweet your Instagrams or post them on Facebook.
- Engage. This is the most important thing you can do. After all, engagement is the point of social media!
Your other choice is to scratch this whole thing and pay someone to do it all for you. This returns us to tip #1, but it’s an important point. Social media is an art, science, and paid profession. The closest you can get to having it all free or easy is a simple social media plan that will give you a simple social media presence that, over time, will poise you for success.
Whatever you decide, good luck!
Photo credit: The wonderful Mr. Tim Pierce!
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