How to Develop Your Social Media Strategy
I’ve seen it a lot: brands and businesses on social media simply posting their own content without any knowledge of when and what they should post and who they’re posting for. To help get your company on the right track, here are the basics of developing a social media strategy.
Social Media Strategy 101: Engagement & Reach
First and foremost, you need to see which social sites are driving the most organic traffic to your website. Once you identify the most engaged social sites, you want to focus on those.
For example, in the B2B SAAS space, LinkedIn is by far the best social platform for companies to engage with prospects. LinkedIn is followed by Twitter (but by a fairly large margin) which is then followed by Instagram or Facebook, depending on the niche.
Remember, you don’t just want social followers, you want social followers who will eventually become leads. So make sure you’re targeting the people you want to become customers or clients, aka your audience.
If it’s not yet been done, you need to first define your audience (one way you can do this is to develop buyer personas) and then base your content and social media marketing strategies on those people you’re trying to reach.
Some questions you should be asking before launching a social media marketing or content campaign include:
- Who is this content for?
- What is the age, demographic, interests, etc. of my audience?
- What social media sites are they using?
- What problem is my content solving/need is it filling for them?
Promoting Content on Social
After these questions are asked, and your buyer personas are developed and/or audience is defined, you’re ready to start sharing content on social. After all, if you don’t know where your audience is online or what they’re looking for, how do you know that you’re producing the content they want?
The first thing you need to do before promoting content on social is to find out the best times to post and how often you should be posting a day.
The Best Times to Post on Social Media
For the most popular networks, the best frequency and times to post are:
- Facebook: Twice a day on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays between 1-4pm and 6-10pm EST.
- Twitter: Three times a day, Monday through Friday between 8-10am, 11am-1pm, and 5-6pm EST.
- Instagram: Once or twice a day on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 11am-1pm and 7-9pm EST.
- LinkedIn: Once a day on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 7-10am and 5-6pm EST.
- Pinterest: Five times a day on Saturdays and Sundays from 12-2pm and 7-10pm EST.
To make this posting schedule easier to follow, I like to use a social media scheduling tool like Buffer to post to various sites throughout the day (it also has the best times to post built into the tool).
It’s important to repurpose content to breathe new life into it (and so you don’t have to spend all of your time on content creation). This could entail making a blog post into an infographic or an eBook into a how-to video. Remember, the more diverse the content, the more appealing to users. Repurposing content also lets you promote the same content in a fresh, new way on social.
Social Media Reporting
Don’t do your social media reporting manually. This takes a lot of time and simply isn’t worth the time investment. I would recommend using a social media analytics/reporting tool like Simply Measured, Sprout Social or Buffer. The ROI for the minimal amount of money spent on a tool like this is higher than having an employee spend his/her time collecting all of the data manually.
Developing a social media strategy doesn’t have to be an all-consuming task that makes you want to bang your head against the wall. A basic understanding of your audience, the content they want and the social media sites they’re on will help you establish a strategy that generates more click throughs and a higher ROI on your current content.
This post was originally published in 2015 and updated in 2021.