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What is a social media strategy and why is it important?

Truth is, the most effective social media campaigns owe their success to the strategy that sits behind them.

Sometimes, managing your business’s social media can feel a bit like high school, and trying to break into the really cool clique that always look amazing, get heaps of attention and are seamlessly social successes.

Meanwhile, we continue to struggle to be noticed but are largely ignored. Sure, there’s more we can be doing to make an impression, and we’re vaguely aware that there are rules we should be following but not sure exactly what they are, except that “on Wednesdays, we wear pink”.

Yet, managing your social media doesn’t have to be a Mean Girls rerun. Like Cady taking on Regina George and the cool clique, all you need is a strategy.

What is a social media strategy?

While you may expend a lot of energy dissecting the latest social media post to go viral, hoping to uncover the winning formula, the truth is, the most effective social media campaigns owe their success to the strategy that sits behind them.

Think of a social media strategy as a road map that will get you to your destination. Your goal might be to increase sales, raise brand awareness, or sell tickets to an event, for example. A social media strategy will detail how your business will use social media to achieve this goal.

It will include what platforms to use, what type of posts to create, when to post, and which audience to target.

Every piece of the strategy must support the desired outcome.

Why do I need a social media strategy?

To increase brand awareness, consumer trust, and knowledge of your offering, you need to get in front of people – and the people are on social media.

In fact, it’s estimated that one in three people in the world, including children, are active users of social media.

Social media holds the potential to generate a massive amount of leads, but it’s also home to all your competitors with their similar offerings, as well as a whole heap of other distractions.

A social media strategy will help you map out a plan to stand out from the crowd, build an audience of activated and informed followers, and create an environment where you can take leads and massage them through the buying cycle, from awareness to consideration to purchase phase.

It’s also important to have a strategy to ensure you can aim for certain goals. Ad hoc marketing that takes a reactive and haphazard approach is not only risky, it can lead to inconsistent messaging and branding, and a confused and disengaged audience.

How do I create a social media strategy?

The most successful social media strategies have some things in common, such as:

A tangible, well defined objective

It might be to increase brand awareness; it could be to introduce more people to the product or service you offer; or it could be to promote an event or simply to establish you as a thought leader. Ideally, goals should have measurable KPIs and have timings attached.

A clear audience

Who do you need to communicate with to achieve these goals? If you’re a baby store, for example, you might want to attract new mothers. Or if you own a hardware store, you might want to attract homeowners and renovators.

The best platform

Once you know your audience, you need to know which social media platform they prefer and how they interact with it. This will inform the format that your posts will need to take.

An ask

How you want your audience to respond to your campaign should be clear and well-articulated – don’t make people guess what to do. It could be to watch a video, express interest in going to an event, or to click through to a product link.

Monitoring and analysis

Social media strategies should be constantly reviewed and analysed, to uncover information that will feed into future strategies.

What type of post yielded the highest results, video, photo or copy and link? Which platforms were the most responsive? Which call to action the most effective? What were the highest performing hashtags and which were duds?

Need a social media strategy?

Creating a powerful social media strategy requires specific research, a strong understanding about how different audiences interact with social media platforms, and agility to test and refine, even when the strategy is being rolled out.

Assemblo is a full-service marketing agency based in Melbourne, with industry leaders in developing and implementing social media strategies that elevate brands and deliver tangible bottom line results.

To find out how we can help your business, give us a call on (03) 9079 2555 or send us a note via the contact form below.

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