Did you know that your website’s SEO ranking is directly affected by your company’s social media activity? If your social media channels properly utilize keywords that are relevant to your business, then search engines like Google will grant both your main domain website and your social media accounts a higher SEO ranking. It’s all about finding an audience of potential buyers, and engaging them with content rich in keywords that relate to your business.
Furthermore, social media posts can also link directly to your website, helping you achieve your sales goals. Developing a social media plan and presence is a crucial part of any effective SEO strategy, but you don’t need to be a social media expert to learn how to tweet or share content on Facebook successfully. Here are a few tips to help you create a social media marketing plan.
1) Prioritize your Social Media Channels
Start by taking some time to assess your current social channels and the ones you haven’t tried yet. Which social media channels do you currently use? Which ones have the most traffic? Also, which social media channel is your audience of buyers likely to use the most? Some companies may find that certain channels, like Pinterest or Facebook, are more effective than other channels. For example, a company that specializes in cookware may find that sharing pictures and recipes on Pinterest is more effective than sending tweets about new promotions or discounts. Honestly, there isn’t a right or wrong answer concerning which channels you should use. It’s all about experimenting and finding the channel that both you and your audience are the most comfortable using. Once you do find the correct channel, focus most of your efforts on that one platform. You can always expand your efforts to other channels when you have the time.
2) Identify Content Topics and Types
OK, so here’s the big question: what do you share on social media? Well, ideally, your goal is to promote discussion about topics relevant to your brand (product, service, people, values). That discussion doesn’t have to be complex or promotional—simply sharing interesting images or a link to a blog post to encourage people to read, click and comment works for promoting discussion about things related to your brand. However, don’t just blast your followers with links to drive traffic to your website. Instead, offer your followers value in what you post. The more valuable the content, the higher the likelihood that your followers will continually visit your page and share your social media posts— and once a visitor begins to engage regularly with you, that increases the likelihood that they’ll become a buyer.
3) Create an Editorial Calendar and Assign Responsibility
Now that you have content ideas, consider how often you want to post, and create a calendar. For some businesses, posting content on their social media channels once every day is plenty. For others, they may find that posting content throughout the day is better. The calendar will be a guide, but keep things flexible while working to achieve your frequency goals.
4) Measure and Revisit your Plan
A good social media strategy will continually evolve. You should measure key activity on your social media channels so you can track progress over time. You’re looking for overall engagement—ideally, you want your audience to comment, share and interact with whatever you share. You can check out your overall engagement by simply looking over the number of comments and shares for each post, or for certain social media channels, like Facebook, there are “social media analytics” tools that can quantify traffic and usage. Furthermore, sites like Hootsuite can make it easy to develop an editorial calendar, schedule posts and measure traffic on your social media channels. If you aren’t seeing the results you want—for example, if you notice traffic from your social media channels to your website is low, or if you notice that no one is liking, sharing or commenting on your posts—then it’s time to adjust. Try changing-up the formula by posting different content, posting more or less frequently and so on.
Remember, it will take time to see results, so prepare for the long haul. It’s a good idea to follow other successful social media channels that fall within your particular field of interest or business model too. What do they do that’s unique? Is there something that they post that you don’t? If you keep working on your social media marketing plan, you will see positive results overtime.
Creating a social media strategy is absolutely critical for any business with an online presence, so if you can, try to take some time to create a distinct marketing plan—you won’t regret it!