1. Sorting Curated and Owned Content
This stage is important. To get started you need to know what you have (your owned content and resources) and what you want to share, endorse or what your audience will find helpful (curated). You need to make sure that you have a huge arsenal of content that you can share with your audience at any given time. Understanding what content (that’s not yours) is relevant takes time, but it gets easier over time. You need to sift daily through your curated content to find new information, old content isn’t always relevant especially in social media. The exception to this is often long-form resources, which have a much longer shelf-life if used for lead generation.
2. Crafting Content Updates
After you have found the content that you want to share, you need to find out how to share it best on your social networks. Once you have crafted social media updates a few times this step becomes easier and easier. As you gain more knowledge your content will become a lot better. People will notice your improved headlines, using thoughtful words, and creating shareable content for THEIR benefit.
B2B companies want to promote their products on their social media networks and that isn’t a problem at all. The problem that B2B companies need to avoid is how often they are sharing promotional content and how often they are sharing non-promotional content. If you are spending all of your time promoting your products and not adding any value to your social community, people will stop listening. There are a lot of ratios out there for sharing content and the one we use at Red Branch Media is the Golden Ratio; share 30% owned, 60% curated and 10% promotional content.
3. Posting Updates
Most social media managers will use a social media management tool to help them with this process. It’s estimated that the time wasted on social media per week is 6 hours and 48 minutes. Using a social media management tool will help you save time. Once you have figured out how to use the tool, uploading your posts will go much faster.
4. Scheduling Update
A step beyond posting updates is to schedule updates for the future. This is where an editorial calendar will be beneficial. You can plan out what you want to say, have it edited, create the image ahead of time and then schedule it to go out.
Scheduling in advance will help you come up with a better flow of posts that will keep your audience anticipating the next post. CoSchedule (@CoSchedule) claims that by using their editorial calendar they can quadruple your traffic. That sounds great to anyone! Social media managers are not online 24/7 so having posts scheduled will reach those users that are online when you aren’t.
5. Measuring Success
After you have updated a few times you need to look at the analytics surrounding the posts. How many retweets did you receive? Did anyone comment on your Facebook post? Also, ask yourself what data means the most to you? Some clients might want you to focus on selling a product, while some want their accounts to be used just for their employer brand and want to reach a large audience. It all depends on the end goal, what is the purpose of having a social media account?
6. Analyzing Data
Collecting data is the first part of this process. Once you have done that you need to analyze it to see what worked and what didn’t then adjust your strategy. Some things you might want to adjust in your strategy might be, times you are posting, which hashtags you are using, the days you are posting or even if you are posting too often.
7. Responding to Messages
People are going to respond to the content that you are publishing. Responding to your audience is a very important part of a social media strategy. According to CONVINCE&CONVERT, “42% of complaining customers on social media expect a response within 60 minutes.” You need to be engaging with your audience in a timely manner in case something should happen or if someone engages with you, they know there is someone real there to answer.
8. Engaging Your Audience
Very similar to responding to messages, engaging with your audience will make a brand become a living thing. You should share, like, comment on, retweet and follow new people all the time. For me, this is the most crucial part of a social media strategy because it helps grow a brand on social media.
What trends are you noticing in your industry? If you have clients in different industries is it vital to know what competitors are doing. “I think the best advice for businesses that are trying to take things online and create a presence is first to watch — instead of jumping in — and look at pages that you like and make active observations about what’s going on,” says Doug Quint, owner of Big Gay Ice Cream. You want to make sure you not only are doing the same, but coming up with ideas that will put you ahead. This is where listening to your audience comes into play.
Every social media manager experiments with their posts. You need to test posts to really discover what resonates with your audience. When you experiment with posts you will know what your audience wants to see and you can continue with that strategy.
Are there some things that you do as a social media manager that you think I missed? If you can name things that I am missing please let me know in the comments section below.