Are you use social media? But using social media and leveraging social media for your business are wildly different things.
See social media marketing can help you build engaged audiences and create multiple sources of traffic that continually bring in customers. That’s why I’ve put together this guide to walk you through how to approach your own social media strategy.
By the end of this blog, social media marketing service providers know how to create a structured approach to get results when building a following, getting more engagement in developing your brand, and of course, attracting more customers.
This blog right here is all about how to create an effective social media marketing strategy that’ll help you grow an audience and sell more of your product.
What Is A Social Media Marketing Strategy
Leveraging the power of social networks is about creation, creating content, creating conversation, and creating added value to the world. This takes planning and some work.
So a social media strategy consists of clearly defining goals, building a content plan, creating a consistent production schedule, estimating impact, and of course measuring the performance data to ensure we’re taking constant and calculated actions that will yield the results we want to see for our business.
A social media strategy is a four-way relationship between your goals, your plans, your activities, and your various social media presences to come together and realize some of your business’s desired outcomes. So the whole point of a social media strategy is ultimately to save time while we free up to focus on all the other things that you need to do to run your business.
Whether it’s driving traffic to your site, building an audience, engaging and deepening your relationship with your customers, or developing greater brand awareness across the web. We can get really, really deep into the weeds.
But what I’d love to do in this blog is give you a simpler framework for you to build on. And the easiest way I can think of is to separate your journey with social media into four distinct areas: your goals, your target audiences, your metrics of success, and your content mix. So with that, let’s jump right in and kick things off with your goals.
Single Penny On Ads
Before you spend a single minute doing anything or a single penny on ads, you need to be crystal clear about what you want to achieve through your business’s activities on social media.
The most common social media goals for entrepreneurs include increasing brand awareness, acquiring leads and new customers establishing social proof to help build a loyal following, creating excitement and demand for your products, and even providing customer service.
Identify Your Goals
The first thing you’ll want to do is identify what your goals are when it comes to the kinds of results you want your social media activities to bring you and your business.
I mean, maybe you’ve just launched. So one of your primary goals might be to create excitement and demand for your products by sharing beautiful product shots and some short blog lifestyle clips, featuring people using your products.
Perhaps you even collaborate with influencers to test and review your products. If you’re just launching another one of your goals might be to begin building brand awareness for folks to know about your company and the fact that you exist.
One of the best ways to increase awareness is through stories, you know, sharing tidbits about you, your company, your vision, and what you believe in.
Giving these random content examples demonstrates the importance of really thinking carefully about the results you want, and your social content to bring your business.
Think hard about the stage your business is currently at. Then just choose one or two goals to focus your efforts on right now. But defining and setting goals is only the beginning.
Identify Your Audience
The second thing you need to be crystal clear on is who your target audience is. In other words, in step one, you have identified your goals for leveraging social media. But if you don’t narrow down who you want to speak to your efforts can easily be all for nothing.
The aim right here is specificity, especially for new entrepreneurs. This can be challenging.
After all, we want everyone to buy what we’re offering, but as the famous saying. If you try to please everyone, you end up pleasing no one.
And the same goes right for social media targetting. If you try to create content for everyone, no one ends up being truly interested in what you have to say and offer. So be ruthless with yourself here.
Online Store Accessories
An entrepreneur may have an online store selling accessories for hikers. They might feel like all hikers are their target audience. And while all hikers might be a part of their audience, their target audience needs to be much more refined. You’re going to want to go much deeper than the obvious age location and gender identifiers and find deeper identifiers.
What careers and industries do you target audience work in? What kind of salary range do they earn? Since this will help inform who can afford your products. Especially if you have a higher price point.
I mean, what are their ancillary interests? Even though our friend is selling accessories for hikers, it’s worth it to think of other lifestyle choices their ideal customer makes. Perhaps they are very environmentally conscious.
And so our friend’s line of accessories made entirely of recycled and sustainable materials is yet another anchor point between them and their target audience.
Which apps and websites do your target customer visit regularly? Are they an endless social scroller in their free time or do they gobble up current events and news nonstop? Beyond the obvious of helping you decide where to spend your paid advertising budget.
This information can also really help you narrow down content decisions, like whether to create more image-based content or written content. What motivates them to buy things? Are they the type who wants to chase status symbols?
Do they try to find the most unique items that fewer people have to stand out as an individual? I mean, this kind of research can even help with your product development, like whether to create an ultra-limited run colorway or luxury versions of your most popular pieces.
What are their pain points? What are common challenges your customers experienced in the marketplace? And how can you position your company as a potential solution? You can probably start to see now just how important identifying a specific target audience really is to start fleshing out your social media strategy.
Ultimately it will help you create content with clarity and purpose that will help you yield the results you want. More sales, a more loyal and passionate customer base, greater brand recognition, and increased trust and social proof.
By the way, if you’re feeling like you get it, but you don’t fully get it, there’s an incredibly in-depth article on whether digital marketing is something that can be automated? blog.
It includes a breakdown of all the most popular social networks you can leverage, their most effective use cases, and even information on social media automation and scheduling apps to help free up more of your time.
So you can focus on other impactful things for your business. From choosing your channels to figuring out what to post, simply fill in the blanks, to think through how you can best use social media to meet your marketing goals.
Define Your Metrics
But continuing right along, let’s move on to the third core component of your social media strategy, defining your metrics of success and your KPIs, your key performance indicators.
When deciding what metrics to focus on, the main thing you want to stay cognizant of is, of course, the goals that you set back in the first component of your social media strategy. For example, if the goal you’re focusing on is building and growing your audience.
Then it stands to reason that the metrics you’ll be tracking are audience-related, like the number of new followers and subscribers.
In general, there are three primary areas to identify metrics that matter when it comes to social media and they are engagement, awareness, and return on investment.
Possible engagement metrics include clicks on your links, likes, and other reactions to your posts, as well as the number of comments, and your pieces of content received.
If you’re creating social blogs, another important metric is audience retention. How long does your audience watch your content before they get bored and do something else?
Another metric is your total post engagement, which combines every action your audience takes from likes and comments to reblogs and saves divided by the number of impressions or the number of times your content is served to people in their social feeds.
How Interesting Your Content Is?
These are examples of engagement metrics, and they indicate how interesting your content is to your audience, how responsive your audience is, and similarly, how compelling your posts are to drive viewers to take part in your conversations.
Awareness metrics are worth paying attention to if you are trying to do just that: increase your brand awareness across a platform. One key metric is your reach or the total number of people who see your content.
Another metric is impressions, or how many times a platform serves your piece of content on people’s timelines or their home feeds. Another clear awareness metric has to do with mentions and tags.
I’m talking about a number of times people have taken the time to at you in their own posts or comments to further amplify your account’s chances of being discovered by others.
When it comes to return on investment, some see this as sort of the most important class of metrics, and who can blame them? After all creating social content takes time and money.
As entrepreneurs, we’re in business to earn money. ROI is all about ensuring your efforts are yielding positive dollars, meaning conversions into actual sales for your online store.
ROI As A Direct Monetary Assessment
Oftentimes people see ROI as strictly a direct monetary assessment, meaning they pay for social content to lead people to their online store and assess if the profits from people purchasing their product, outshine the amount that they spent on the content. Of course, this is an important metric to track on an individual ad campaign.
But the beauty of identifying, tracking, and learning from metrics and analytics, is that the more you do it, the more insightful the data actually becomes.
See once you really, really start diving into your metrics for a few months, you can start seeing the indirect monetary implications to the point where you can turn your posts and ad spins into a formula with different leavers that you can pull to yield results.
So instead of just looking at ad spend on a product page link, you can start drawing fascinating conclusions, like being able to assign a dollar value to each new follower.
For example, you learn that a certain type of content you create historically generates 15 new followers. And you also know that for every 100 new followers that you get the number of orders at your store increases by five additional sales per week.
With an average transaction of $200, that’s $1,000 gross more per week for every 100 new followers. If these followers come from two posts on your Instagram account, that costs you $20 to create and pay for post promotion.
Well, that means you’ve made a solid return on investment. With that kind of data interpretation, you can then start to experiment with doubling the publishing of that type of post and doubling the post-promotion budget again, your metrics and analytics uncover leavers that you can pull to increase growth and profits. And speaking of a certain type of post, this leads us to the right to the fourth and final core component of your social media strategy.
Look, no one wants to be bombarded with nonstop, pseudo advertisements of your products. It feels overly sales and dares I even say desperate. Instead, you want to ensure your social media channels consistently deliver the value of all sorts to your audience I mean, you will, of course, feature your products, but you also create various types of content that perform well and further connect with your customers and prospects.
You’re going to want to diversify the value you provide people and to do it consistently to keep them engaged, loyal, and always coming back. But what do I mean by diversifying the value that you provide? Well, think about your audience and what they care about.
Think about what makes them laugh and what makes them cry. Think about what they want to learn about, and even think about what matters to both of you and them.
Think About Content Format
Finally, think about what kinds of content formats and styles typically perform well on the social platform. Maybe our hiking accessory store owner will share educational blog reels that’ll demonstrate tips and tricks to use on the trail.
Perhaps they’ll share inspirational content bites aimed at introducing newbies to the wonders of hiking. I mean, they might even consider sharing stories about their customer’s hiking wins.
Creating polls can be a great way for them to both learn about their customers. It’s a fun way for their audience to see if their individual opinions align or separate from other hikers.
Set expectations and stick to them so that your audience knows that they’ll see a new product showcase, an insider poll, a touching story, a funny meme, and some lifestyle shots each and every week from you and your store. This is vital and this feels daunting and scary to you, fear, not that article and free template that we linked in the description below.
Free Tools Like Hootsuite And Buffer
We’ll teach you about incredible free tools like Hootsuite and Buffer that’ll enable you to batch your tasks and schedule posts. So you can dedicate just a few hours once a week and queue everything up.
So you can just set it and forget it. This will free up time, tremendously to focus on all the other things on your plate. Not the least of which is sales. And one of the most powerful selling features of Shopify is the fact that all plans include integration with popular social media channels, like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, or Pinterest.
This enables your social media visitors to buy directly in those social apps without needing to leave their feeds to go to your website. If you’d like to experience the power of these social integrations for yourself I welcome you to sign up for a 100% free no strings attached trial with Shopify. Just click the link right up here or in the description below to claim your free trial. But check it out.
Four Key Components Of A Social Media Strategy
I have a challenge for you. You’ve read this blog and I’ve seen the bird’s eye view of the four key components of a social media strategy from setting your goals, to defining your target audience, to identifying the metrics that help keep you on track towards your goals and coming up with a content mix that’ll help you grow.
My challenge to you is to take a short break from YouTube and spend just 15 to 20 minutes putting pen to paper.
Start a preliminary map for yourself with these four components. Like I said, in the intro, we’re all used to using social media as consumers, but leveraging social media as entrepreneurs is a whole other ball game. It takes practice to sort of build that mental muscle of seeing social media from the other side.