The Ultimate Social Media Playbook

Developing a comprehensive social media strategy is crucial for achieving your business goals and building a strong online presence. Here are some of the top items to consider when creating a social media strategy.

Clear Social Media Objectives and Goals:

Define specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals for your social media efforts. Goals might include increasing brand awareness, driving website traffic, generating leads, or boosting sales. Be sure to have timely goals with when you want to attain these goals and be realistic. If you want to grow your audience by 1,000 you will need a realistic budget and want to look at case studies to understand the average cost to acquire a qualified fan to your business page.

Target Audience:

Identify your target audience(s) and create detailed buyer personas. Understand their demographics, interests, pain points, and online behavior to tailor your content and messaging. This will also help you target your ads to the right demographics as well as communicate with your advertising agency as a communication tool so that everyone is on the same page when working for you and your mission.

If you are new to persona or avatar creation, you may want to take a quick tour of how to create personas with our handy guide you can find here.>>

Platform Selection:

Choose the social media platforms that align with your target audience and business objectives. Focus on platforms where your audience is most active. If you are a business to business company, you may start with Linkedin and research how competitors market, whether they include Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, or Snapchat. You want to be good at everything you do, so do not select too many platforms where you find yourself spread too thin and not doing a good job anywhere.

The goal is to be where your audience is and to speak to them in the language that suits the platform best.

Content Strategy:

Develop a content strategy that includes the types of content you’ll create (e.g., blog posts, videos, infographics), the topics you’ll cover, and the frequency of posting. Ensure your content aligns with your brand and resonates with your audience. And remember you can repurpose content into so many different formats and get so much more mileage out of them.  Consider all of these content formats.

  1. Blog Posts: Written articles or posts published on your website’s blog.
  2. Infographics: Visual representations of information, data, or concepts.
  3. Videos: Recorded or live videos on platforms like YouTube, Facebook Live, or TikTok.
  4. Podcasts: Audio recordings typically available on podcast platforms.
  5. Social Media Posts: Short, concise updates on social media platforms (e.g., Facebook posts, tweets, Instagram captions).
  6. Ebooks: Comprehensive, downloadable digital books or guides.
  7. Whitepapers: In-depth reports or research papers typically used in B2B marketing.
  8. Case Studies: Detailed accounts of successful projects or customer experiences.
  9. Webinars: Live or recorded online seminars or presentations.
  10. Email Newsletters: Regularly scheduled email updates sent to subscribers.
  11. GIFs: Short, looping animated images.
  12. Memes: Humorous or relatable images or text often shared on social media.
  13. Interactive Quizzes: Online quizzes that engage and educate users.
  14. User-Generated Content (UGC): Content created by your customers or audience, such as reviews, testimonials, or photos.
  15. Tutorials and How-To Guides: Step-by-step instructions for accomplishing tasks.
  16. Product Demos: Demonstrations of how products or services work.
  17. Surveys and Polls: Interactive content to gather audience feedback.
  18. Templates and Checklists: Pre-designed resources for users to customize.
  19. Slideshows and Presentations: Visual presentations created with tools like PowerPoint or Google Slides.
  20. Guest Posts: Content contributed by external experts or influencers.
  21. Interviews: Q&A sessions with industry experts or thought leaders.
  22. News and Updates: Timely updates on industry news or company announcements.
  23. Behind-the-Scenes Content: A glimpse into your company’s culture, processes, or workspace.
  24. Contests and Giveaways: Promotions where participants can win prizes.
  25. Interactive Maps: Maps that allow users to explore locations or data.
  26. Live Streams: Real-time video broadcasts on platforms like Twitch or Instagram Live.
  27. Reviews and Testimonials: Feedback and endorsements from satisfied customers.
  28. Comparison Charts: Visual comparisons of products or services.
  29. FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions): Answers to common questions about your products or services.
  30. Resource Lists: Curated lists of valuable tools, resources, or articles.
  31. Challenges and Competitions: Encouraging participation or competition among your audience.
  32. Storytelling: Compelling narratives that engage and resonate with your audience.
  33. Comic Strips and Cartoons: Humorous or informative visual content.
  34. Interactive Games and Quizzes: Engaging games or trivia to entertain and educate.
  35. Augmented Reality (AR) Filters: Customized filters for platforms like Snapchat or Instagram.
  36. Virtual Reality (VR) Experiences: Immersive, 360-degree content experiences.
  37. Surprise and Delight: Unexpected or personalized content to surprise and delight your audience.
  38. Inspirational Quotes: Motivational or inspirational quotes paired with visuals.
  39. Ask-Me-Anything (AMA) Sessions: Interactive Q&A sessions with your audience.
  40. Holiday and Seasonal Content: Content tailored to specific holidays or seasons.

Content Calendar:

Creating a social media calendar template can help you plan and organize your social media content in advance, ensuring a consistent and cohesive online presence. Here’s a basic template below that you can use as a starting point. You can customize it to suit your specific needs and platforms. These columns help you plan your month, keeping attention to days of the week and how media performs on different days, the type of media – is this a quiz, a blog, a slideshow, a video, or something else.  What is the focus of the post, what does the imagery show, time and engagement for that post. These will help you identify your best content, best days, and content types so you can increase the types of posts that increase your brand engagement.

Social Media Calendar Template

Social-Media-Calendaring-Template

Content Types:
– Blog Post
– Image Post
– Video Post
– Infographic
– Poll/Quiz
– Product Promotion
– Event Promotion
– User-Generated Content
– Inspirational Quote
– News/Announcement

Posting Times:
– Morning (e.g., 8:00 AM)
– Mid-Morning (e.g., 10:00 AM)
– Lunchtime (e.g., 12:00 PM)
– Afternoon (e.g., 3:00 PM)
– Evening (e.g., 6:00 PM)

Engagement Metrics:
– Likes
– Comments
– Shares/Retweets
– Clicks/Views
– Conversion (e.g., Sign-ups, Purchases)
– Reach/Impressions

Notes:
– Use the “Content Type” column to specify the type of content you plan to post (e.g., blog post, image, video).
– In the “Content Topic” column, briefly describe the main theme or topic of the content.
– In the “Post Copy/Description” column, write the text that will accompany your post.
– Attach visual media (images or videos) to your posts as necessary.
– Use the “Posting Time” column to specify the preferred time for each post.
– After posting, record engagement metrics (likes, comments, shares, etc.) to evaluate the success of each post.

Feel free to expand or customize this template to accommodate additional details, platforms, or specific requirements for your social media strategy. Regularly updating and using a social media calendar can help you stay organized, plan content effectively, and maintain a consistent online presence.

Visual Branding:

Maintain a consistent visual identity across all social media profiles. Use a consistent logo, color scheme, and visual style to reinforce brand recognition.

Engagement and Community Building:

Establish guidelines for engaging with your audience, responding to comments, and handling customer inquiries or feedback. Build an active and engaged community around your brand.

Hashtag Strategy:

Develop a hashtag strategy to increase discoverability and engagement. Use relevant and trending hashtags in your posts.  You will want to assess the popularity and competition level of the hashtags you plan to use. Balance between using highly competitive and less competitive hashtags to increase your visibility.  You will also want to organize your hashtags into categories based on relevance. For instance, you might have categories for product-related hashtags, brand-related hashtags, and industry-related hashtags.

Avoid overloading your posts with hashtags. While platforms like Instagram allow up to 30 hashtags per post, it’s generally best to use a smaller, more targeted selection. Aim for a mix of around 5 to 15 hashtags per post, depending on the platform. This will also help you identify which hashtags are driving the most exposure. Hashtags specifically enable folks to find you by subjects that interest you. If you have 30, you will not be able to identify the driving hashtag. Single use hashtags will show you exactly what you get with each #hashtag.

Paid Advertising:

Consider allocating a budget for social media advertising. Use paid campaigns to target specific audiences, promote products or services, and drive conversions. If you detailed direction while diving into advertising, you can check out our Ultimate Omnichannel Marketing Guide here.>>

Monitoring and Analytics:

Implement tools for monitoring social media activity and tracking key metrics. Regularly analyze performance data to measure the effectiveness of your strategy and make adjustments as needed.

Influencer Collaboration:

Explore influencer marketing opportunities if they align with your brand and goals. Collaborate with influencers to reach a wider and more targeted audience.

Crisis Management:

Develop a plan for handling social media crises and negative feedback. Outline steps for addressing issues promptly and professionally.

Compliance and Legal Considerations:

Ensure that your social media activities comply with relevant laws and regulations. Protect customer data and respect privacy rights.

A well-thought-out social media strategy should align with your overall business objectives, resonate with your target audience, and be flexible enough to adapt to the dynamic nature of social media platforms. Regularly review and update your strategy to ensure it remains effective and relevant.

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