I struggled with the title of this blog, mostly as I am not into new year resolutions and the thing I am trying to write about is tied into the theme of a new year but is different to a list of resolutions (or wishes, as my daughter calls them!). When talking about a refresh to your social media for business strategy, I wanted to focus on that feeling you get when Christmas is over, New Year is coming (or just about over) and you take down the tree, clean the house and start a new page on your new diary.
You want to start, maybe not brand new, but certainly with a few little tweaks to habits or leave things behind that haven’t served you well or you have outgrown.
The same goes for your social media for business channels.
Your bio or profile probably needs an update, you need a new month’s content plan and you need some steer as to what your business needs from your social media over the next month – longer if you can… but let’s be honest; life, work, social media and your content is pretty hard to plan longer than the next lockdown or Tier change ammi right?!
Refresh your social media strategy.
Trend reports and social media predictions have been hard to read of late, as the “last 12 months data report” type documents feel pretty useless at the moment because the world as we know it is much altered.
And so I spent a fair amount of time over the last few weeks reading blogs, listening to podcasts, reading trend prediction reports and even trawling through marketing text books from my university days of 2000 (not a typo, I have been in the marketing industry that long). Ha.
The biggest slice of wisdom I can ever give you in this department is to know the difference between a trend and a strategy. I think we can all agree that they are different words and different things, but too often a business will mix the two up when trying to run their social media for business channels.
Make sure that what you are planning to do and how you are planning to communicate to your audience on social media is part of your strategy and not a social media growth trend.
Six elements of a social media strategy.
When I work with a business, I focus on 6 elements when building their social media strategy:-
- What is your goal? Like what do you want from your social media channels. Things like brand awareness, selling products or services, communicating your values or customer service?
- Who are you communicating to? This one is your audience profile, this doesn’t need to be a lengthy profile piece, but you need to know your target audience (this also helps you decided which social media platform you should put your time to).
- A competitor analysis, you need to know what your competitors are doing to help you spot gaps and create a niche space for you and your business.
- A social media audit; what’s working or has worked well in the past and what is not working.
- Types of content. Video, images, stock images, infographics?
- Content ideas. I talk about planning your content idea and content pillars in this blog from September.
I expand on each of these elements in this video on my You Tube channel, it’s just over 8 minutes long but if you make a coffee and get a biscuit for the watch, it’ll feel like no time at all.
Makeover your social media platforms.
I wrote a blog at the start of 2020 listing 10 ways to kickstart your social media platforms for the new year; and after a reread, I am happy to say that it still stands!
Of course, there are a few other external variants we need to consider when using social media for our business at the moment; like content overload as the world turns (even more digital), the digital detox trend and a change of circumstances as more people work from home.
These don’t alter the basic set-up instructions for a social media platform (like bio, profile photo and web links), but they will alter the type of content you are creating, the messages and captions you share and the way you measure the success of your platforms.
Am big on focussing on what you can control and being realistic about your time (hello outsourcing) and results.
Using social media for your business.
I get that it is a little tricky at the moment; long term planning is near impossible, content overload is a real thing, your audience (and you) are pretty exhausted with just about everything, platform updates (hello Instagram) are coming in fast and furious and frankly, it would be cool to still be in Christmas mode… but rather than adding to the noise of a new year and big resolutions, or the sounds of “just post more” take the time to sit with your insights and strategy; and make some clear and quiet choices for your business and social media plan.
Then write them down in a to-do list of your choice (Trello is my go-to) and start.
Help! I am still stuck with using social media for business.
Panic not. I have a number of free resources available to help, mostly on my Instagram on IGTV or on the blog section here.
You can also book a 1-2-1 with me (limited spaces left in January) or a social media audit or strategy session (spaces from February).
Happy New Year and happy social media refresh! #BirdandEmmy