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5 Steps to a Successful Social Media Marketing Strategy

Posted by Emily Hegland on November 24, 2021

For brands, ramping up your social media presence may seem like a Herculean task. And it’s not easy… it takes strategy, planning and testing. You often have to throw a variety of posts at the wall and see what sticks. There’s no one way to do social media… it all depends on your brand, your goals and your audience.  

So, before you embark on your social media journey, here’s a roadmap to help guide you to the right strategy. 

Step 1: Analyze Engagement 

To understand your growth, you need a starting point. 

Make note of:
-Current follower count
-Average comments per post
-Average shares per post
-Total impressions  

From there, you can track these numbers and watch for jumps or dips in engagement. This will help you understand what’s working… and what’s not.  

Step 2: Understand Your Brand   

What is your brand voice? What kind of audience do you want to engage with? What are your long-term business goals? All of these are important to consider before launching into a new content strategy.  

It helps to know your brand’s archetype. Whether you’re the wise Sage imparting valuable information to users, the Jester making jokes and pop culture references or the Ruler flaunting luxury and prestige, you need a clear idea of what your brand represents.  

Once you understand this, you can start working on a social media strategy built around your brand. 

Step 3: Strategize  

Do you want to engage Gen Z scrollers and TikTok users? Do you want to share thought leadership with people in your industry on LinkedIn? Do you want to boost product sales on Instagram? Choose the social media channels that align best with your goals.  

Now you can build out your content calendar… figure out a posting schedule (daily? Twice weekly? Weekends or no?) and plan ahead. You can use platforms like Hubspot or Hootsuite to schedule posts ahead of time. Make note of important dates, holidays and sales opportunities. 

Step 4: Build Ideas  

Social media is all about trying new things and seeing what works best. Take a look at this list of engagement ideas… and choose a few that could work for your goals.  

Ask followers to weigh in. Post questions and invite people to share their opinion. Make your questions relevant, thought-provoking or timely to rally engagement. 

Use quizzes and polls. Trivia, knowledge tests, and “this or that” games can engage users. Plus, you can learn useful insights about your audience. 

Don’t forget the hashtags. Hashtags can help your brand reach new people on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and TikTok. Research which relevant hashtags have a big following… or even create a unique hashtag that represents your brand. Encourage followers to use your hashtag to build a community around your brand. 

Get personal. Showcase customers, employees and partners. This helps humanize your brand and increase your relatability.

Use images. Photography and graphics make your post stand out in the feed. Make sure to use images with eye-catching colors and relevant scenarios. Avoid cheesy or staged-looking stock photos. Research shows that adding an image to text can increase memorability and create a positive connection in people’s brains.  

Do contests. Contests can encourage users to engage with your brand and show their personality. Ask for recipes, original photos or videos that involve your brand.  

Boost follower counts with giveaways. Many brands promote product giveaways with a “follow chain” strategy… to qualify, users must follow you and comment with the handles of three friends. This can help spread awareness and boost your follower count, as referrals to the giveaway garner new followers.  

Offer up gated content. This is a common strategy for B2B brands. Gated content can help with lead generation and engaging prospects. Position yourself as a thought leader with infographics, downloadable guides, mini-courses, webinars, and more. 

Use storytelling. This tactic is a go-to across any marketing channel… and social media is no exception. After all, stories resonate with people. Share a narrative to draw your audience in and create memorable content. 

Repurpose content. Snag stats, graphics and excerpts from your best content, whether that’s on your blog, within an infographic or part of a downloadable report. You can even create short video clips from podcast episodes or longer videos. Retool and reuse to make your successful content go further. 

Step 5: Learn What Works   

Analyze your metrics and see what kind of posts get the most traction. Use your findings to go full speed ahead and create the kind of content that garners engagement. And hey, maybe you’ll get a viral hit once in a while. Social media trends are always evolving, so keep up with what other successful brands are doing and work to constantly improve your strategy.  

Looking to develop a social media strategy that showcases your brand? J&C can help you understand, plan and execute a strategic social media campaign. If you need a partner for your next social campaign, contact J&C today.

Topics: Digital Marketing, Social Media Marketing

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