It’s late and I have so much work to do. Nights like this I am glad that I have taken a preemptive strike at preparation and scheduling (that and meditation). Procrastination is the Bain of managing social media. If you do not have a plan set in place you begin to get sucked into a whirlwind of inconsistent posting, missed relationship opportunity and misrepresentation. In todays ADHD-prone, over-stimulated, digital world it is easy, SO EASY, to get lost in the sea of random information.
Just think, if you saw a message that you enjoyed reading on Google+ and decided to follow that person/brand, then never heard from them again – would you remember them? I will bet you 1,000 +1’s that you wouldn’t (bonus points already if you know what +1 means). You could have would-be ‘followers’ that see your content and want to like it on Google+ or Twitter, but they see a post once every week, or even less.
These are missed opportunities and maybe even lost revenue. It’s extremely important that you set yourself some simple guidelines to ensure that you stay on track with your social media efforts.
#1 | Make a calendar
This is the ‘Duct tape’ of Good Monster’s social media strategy. Whether for our own business, or our clients, without a calendar, our team of “social-whiz-kids” would be lost at sea. Our week starts out with a comprehensive look at all of the tweets, LinkedIn posts, YouTube videos and the hundred other social tasks that need to be completed. From there, tasks are delegated and away we go to conquer digital conversation.
#2 | Don’t overreach
Your business NEEDS to have an online presence, but it (probably) doesn’t need to be everywhere to be successful and profitable. Don’t waste your time with a social strategy that doesn’t look promising. If you are a construction equipment dealer, don’t spend 60% of your time pinning images of a Caterpillar Backhoe to Pinterest – it just doesn’t make sense, or cents. Spend your valuable time in the areas that will pay off. For instance you could use LinkedIn to conjure up business with an excavating company CEO. Or maybe use Twitter to start a conversation with the @CaterpillarInc brand and build a relationship with the people that make your sales goals achievable. Time is precious – use it wisely.
#3 | Schedule time to engage
Social media success won’t happen just by having a Facebook account; you have to put in the time and effort to start a conversation. Consistency is the key to a successful social media strategy. In order to be consistent you have to schedule real, working time engaging people online. Seriously, put it right into your daily calendar to “post on LinkedIn”or maybe “respond to Tweets”. You will save time by scheduling time, and most importantly, you will maintain consistency.
#4 | Study, research and evaluate
Research is an often-overlooked part of a social media campaign. Knowing what works is integral part of a successful social media campaign. After all, would you develop a product without knowing whether it works? Companies spend hundreds of hours in R&D to make sure what they are selling is relevant and serves a purpose. The same should go for a marketing campaign. Otherwise, it could be a huge waste of time – and as we know, time is money.
#5 | Have Fun!
The best part of social media is that you get to connect with the people that power your success. Partners, industry leaders, customers and potential customers are all out there, waiting to talk to you and learn from you. You know that feeling you get when you make a big sale? Well, that could very well start with a tweet or a picture posted on Instagram. Have fun with social media, people will notice and it will be easier to grow and develop your online presence.
Just like having a business plan is essential to growing a business (at some level or another), or having a plan is important to reach your health and fitness goals – having a plan to conquer your industry via social engagement is essential.