Basic Steps for Making Social Media Work for You
Starting a successful social media program isn’t easy, and many marketers expect too much too soon. The truth is, you have to put enough time in to fully understand your “buyer” before you even think about taking to social media with the brand.
But just because the process might be a little more nuanced than you originally thought doesn’t mean that social media can’t generate revenue for you. It can happen if you take the time to be thoughtful, purposeful, and engaging.
Understanding Your Buyer
Your first step should be to consider your buyer and what he or she needs in order to help them along their “buyer’s journey,” “funnel,” or whatever you prefer to call the process for choosing, vetting, and validating a solution or service provider.
Though this process varies from person to person, there are parts that are predictable. Buyers will generally recognize a need, become aware of possible solutions, engage with their potential options (passively or actively), and then finally select (‘I might choose this option’) before validating (‘Yes, I think this is the right choice’). After that, it’s on to the purchase.
Setting up your program
Once you understand what this path looks like for your specific buyer(s), it’s time to take the right steps to employ a social media program that will work for you:
- Research – Create a buyer persona if you don’t already have one, then find out what social media channels are likely to be successful based on this profile. One way to get started is to look at what competitors are doing and think about how this could be adapted for you.
- Plan – Don’t go in blind. Before you post anything, you should already have a strategy, a tone, an editorial calendar for content, and a method for tracking metrics established.
- Integrate – Integrate your program with your existing marketing tactics. Tie it into web, media, PR, content downloads, or additional social forums. Whatever you do, don’t leave your social media efforts isolated from the rest of your plan.
- Deploy – Now it’s time to start writing, designing, making videos, and engaging with your audience. Stick to your editorial calendar, but always keep an eye out for opportunities to join a conversation or take advantage of an online trend.
- Measure – Always be sure that you’re tracking results from your social media profiles, and don’t forget to use multiple tools to get reliable reporting.
- Analyze – What are these metrics telling you? Are you tracking the information that you actually need? Is your content giving you the results you want? Find out what’s working (and what’s not) and make adjustments accordingly.
- Elevate – Don’t just do the same thing over and over. Take your analysis, learn from it, and refuse to stop until you’re achieving the results that you need and making social media work for you. Social sites are agile and always changing, so there’s always an opportunity for you to make a change and see improvement.
Any marketing agency you hire should be able to do all of the above, and keep in mind that you can you partner with an agency and still oversee any part of the process that you choose. But by getting an agency on board with your vision, you’ll be able to focus on the big picture while the content, metrics, and reporting is all taken care of.
Learn more about the social media programs that Wavelength has created and executed for other companies, and find out what we can do for your business.