Social media itself is a catch-all term for sites that may provide radically different social actions. For instance, Twitter is a social site designed to let people share short messages or “updates” with others. Facebook, in contrast is a full-blown social networking site that allows for sharing updates, photos, joining events and a variety of other activities.
Why would a search marketer — or a site about search engines — care about social media? The two are very closely related.
Social media often feeds into the discovery of new content such as news stories, and “discovery” is a search activity. Social media can also help build links that in turn support into SEO efforts. Many people also perform searches at social media sites to find social media content. Social connections may also impact the relevancy of some search results, either within a social media network or at a ‘mainstream’ search engine.
Marketing Land is the sister site to Search Engine Land that covers all facets of internet marketing, including these popular topics within social media marketing:
What are your goals for your business? What are you working toward, and how can social media help you achieve those goals?
Use the S.M.A.R.T framework to make sure your social media goals are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely.
Collect as much data as I can and use it to develop and support my strategy. Begin by gathering general social media statistics and delve into more specifics, such as social media demographics. Then, if I can dive into industry-specific statistics.
Get any data from your about your audience.
Once I’ve amassed as much information as I can, consider creating audience personas.
With these audience insights in mind, do they still make sense? If not, tweak accordingly.
Who are your key competitors? Try to identify at least five strong competitors to benchmark against. Are there any brands in analogous industries that are worth looking at?
Now that you have a clearer picture of your audience, look at the brands they are following.
Once I’ve identified competitors, make use of social listening tools, like Hootsuite streams to monitor their activity and audiences. Consider creating a matrix to map out how competitor social media efforts are positioned in relation to each other. Look for white space. It may be the gap you can fill with your social media strategy.
Unless it’s your first foray into social media, you’re not starting from scratch. A social media proposal should take into account how your current social presence can be evolved or improved upon.
Do some investigating to find out which social media channels you are currently using. Which platforms are you strongest on and why? How have your previous social media initiatives measured up?
With steps 1-4 complete, we have the raw data to get to work on a content strategy.
This is where I should work out what type of content will be created or curated, how content may vary by platform, and when and how frequently it should be posted. The tone of voice, design, and style should also be defined.
Use you as a resource as much as possible. A brand mission statement, style guide, or brand book are important references if you need them. Also what brands inspire you?