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 and away 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 Facebook/Google+ 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/clients.
If it’s not yet been done, you first and foremost need to develop buyer personas and then base your content marketing and social media marketing strategies on those.
- Who is this content for?
- What is his/her age, demographic, interests, etc?
- What social media sites is s/he on?
- What problem is my content solving/need is it filling?
Promoting Content on Social
After these questions are asked, and buyer personas developed, 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, Monday through Friday between 1pm and 4pm EST. Best time to post: Wednesday at 3pm EST.
- Twitter: Five+ times a day, Monday through Thursday between 1pm and 3pm EST.
- LinkedIn: Once a day, Monday through Friday from 7am to 9am and 5pm to 6pm EST.
- Pinterest: Five+ times a day, Monday through Friday from 2pm to 4pm or 8pm to 1am EST. Best time to post: Saturday morning.
- Tumblr: One to three times a day, any day after 4pm EST. Best time to post: Friday after 7pm EST.
- Google+: Twice a day, Monday through Friday between 9am and 11am EST.
- Instagram: Once or twice a day, Monday through Sunday between 2 and 5pm EST. Best time to post: 5pm EST on Wednesdays.
To make this posting schedule easier to follow, I like to use a social media scheduling tool like Buffer to post to the various sites throughout the day (the only site currently not supported on Buffer is Instagram, which still has to be done manually).
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 be making a blog post into an infographic or 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.