In today’s social media world, the content you post has the incredible power to turn your brand into a household name. This kind of impact only comes from a solid social media content strategy. You cannot create an account one very platform and post sporadically hoping for people to understand your brand’s purpose and stand out from your competition. The way to craft an effective social media content strategy is to identify and set goals, conduct a social media audit, plan the content which aligns with your goals and build a clear and detailed content calendar.
Your strategy will differ depending on your industry and audience, but this article will provide a starting point and some key considerations.
First step in creating an effective social media content strategy is to identify your goals for your overall brand. The more specific your marketing goals are the better you will be able to tailor your social media content. Some of the most common marketing goals include;
- Increase brand awareness
- Sales/lead generation
- Increase engagement
- Growing social media audience
- Increase website traffic
The objective you select will determine the type of content you will need. For example, if your objective is to target lead generation, you will need content that directs people to a landing page which will encourage them to sign up to a newsletter, download an ebook etc. However, if your objective is brand awareness you will use content such as a blog to establish thought leadership and a voice in the industry.
To ensure you don’t need to completely rebuild your old social media strategy, it is important to conduct an audit of all your current social media efforts. Take a look at the platforms you are using, which ones are working, which ones aren’t? Take a look at our post on what are the most important social media metrics to track to help you with this. Also consider if there a particular campaign that performed well and if the content could be repurposed somewhere else?
Once a clear goal is identified and a social media audit has been conducted you can start to plan the content you will use to complement your objectives. In our recent study, we identified 5 types of content that will grow your presence and ultimately help craft an effective social media strategy. To download the full findings from this study, click here. These 5 types of content include;
- Brand narrative: Posts that reflect your organisation’s personality, without fitting into any of the other categories.
- Competition: Posts that require engagement, such as liking, commenting, tagging and/or sharing the post, to go into the draw to win a prize.
- Corporate Social Responsibility/Sponsorship: If your business directly sponsors an event, group of people and/or individuals, it falls into this category. CSR posts include educational or awareness posts around social issues that may affect the wider community, such as Daffodil Day, Pink Shirt Day etc.
- Cultural: Posts that reference a cultural moment (for example, Maori Language Week, Mother’s Day and Diwali), or that tap into a cultural trend.
- Product: Promotional posts advertising your products and services or promoting your business.
Which ones should I use you may ask? Well, the most successful social media content drives genuine engagement. You are wanting to open a two-way conversation with your audience, so brands should be looking to create content that enables them to do this.
Obviously depending on your objective, the particular type of content will vary in terms of frequency. For example, if your objective is brand awareness you may use more content involving cultural movements, CSR and brand narrative rather than specific product content or competitions.
You’ve got your goals, planned the content you’ll use and now it’s time to build a detailed content calendar. A content calendar lets you take a big picture approach and helps visualise your ideas and organise them in a way that makes the strategy easier to execute. When planning content don’t be afraid to repurpose it and schedule it across different social media platforms to get the most out of it.
The optimal number of posts according to our study was in the range of 8-12 posts per week with the key principle here being consistency. For example, if you plan to post on Facebook twice every day, stick to that schedule and your audience will begin to expect two new pieces content from you every day.
A content calendar will help build consistency for your brand and will save you a tone of time in the future. You can easily build a content calendar in excel with clear headlines and dates. You can get inspiration on how to build your content calendar through a simple Google search.
Once all these steps have been achieved you will have a comprehensive social media content strategy that will help grow your brand.
- Ensure you have clear objectives and goals
- Plan the content that will complement your objectives and goals
- 5 content ideas that will help grow your business - Brand narrative, competitions, corporate social responsibility/sponsorship, cultural and product
- Build a content calendar to build brand consistency and to save yourself time in the future
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