A Roadmap for Social Media Marketing Strategy That Works
A business can accomplish many goals on social media, from brand awareness to sales. Creating an effective roadmap for social media marketing strategy is the foundation of this accomplishment.
But why invest energy and time in creating a roadmap for social media marketing strategy at all?
That’s because social media is the preferred communication channel for 4.14 billion people who use it religiously every month, according to DataReportal.
Take a look at how the use of social media over time is steadily increasing among American adults.
Image Source – Pew Research Center
Now, that’s the magnitude of the audience your brand can reach out to!
Do you see an enormous marketing opportunity ready to be grabbed?
The vastness of social media can be quite overwhelming, and one can easily lose their way. I totally understand.
That’s why I am going to discuss the process of creating a comprehensive roadmap for social media marketing strategy, step by step.
Let’s get started.
What is a Roadmap for Social Media Marketing Strategy all About?
Agreed that social media is an expansive landscape. But not everyone is your target audience. To reach out to the relevant audience, and to achieve precise and measurable goals, you need a precise roadmap for social media marketing strategy.
Now, when it comes to social media, one size, or strategy in this case, definitely doesn’t fit all. Having said that, any roadmap for social media marketing strategy should be weaved around three elements:
- The audience – Who do you want to reach out to?
- The goals – What do you want to achieve?
- The resources – What do you have to offer?
Whether you are an enterprise or a small business, it is imperative to be focused upon your audience, goals, and resources to create a successful roadmap for social media marketing strategy.
8 Steps to Creating an Effective Roadmap for Social Media Marketing Strategy
Now that you know why you need a roadmap for social media marketing strategy, and why you can’t follow a cookie-cutter approach to formulating one for your business, you’re obviously wondering how to go about the whole exercise.
Just follow the eight steps below rigorously, and you should be having a great roadmap by the end of it.
1. Understanding Social Media and its Capacities
Social media refers to virtual platforms where users create and share ideas, information, interest, and much more.
The first step to creating a roadmap for social media marketing strategy is to understand the worth of social media for your business.
Brands view social networks as powerful marketing channels.
It is a place to interact with your audience and have meaningful conversations with them. Social media platforms are also an excellent avenue for brand building.
Social media marketers come up with extraordinary ways to get users acquainted with specific products and services.
As a majority of social media users love to interact with the brands they follow, social channels present a great customer service opportunity. Queries, feedback, reviews, and recommendations on social media are quite valuable for reputation management.
Social media ecommerce allows you to drive sales from the platform itself, providing a seamless shopping experience, and improving your business bottom line efficiently.
In short, social media is a multi-layered, high-potential forum for brands to market themselves and grow. A clear understanding of its value proposition is the key to creating a good roadmap for social media marketing strategy.
2. Define Social Media Marketing Goals and KPIs
The fact that social media has unlimited potential for marketing brings us to the next step in creating a roadmap for social media marketing strategy.
What precisely do you want to achieve through your social media campaigns?
Why do you want your brand to be on social media? Is it to build brand awareness, generate leads, grow traffic, or for something entirely different like reputation management?
It is more likely that you may set multiple goals in your roadmap for social media marketing strategy and that’s fine.
While setting goals for your social media marketing efforts, make sure that they are SMART, which stands for “specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely.”
To put things into perspective, a measurable goal for your social media marketing strategy can be something like getting 5K followers on Facebook within six months. Or, you may aim to increase the engagement rate from 5% to 10% within a year.
3. Define Your Target Audience
Once your social media marketing goals are set, you can move on to defining your target audience in your roadmap for social media marketing strategy.
The term “target audience” refers to a research-based profile of who your customers are, their pain points, their preferences, and their decision-making patterns.
So, why does having a target audience matter?
Knowing who you are marketing to helps you to customize your content and decide on what, when, and where you are going to share.
Let’s say you are a real estate brand. Insights such as the demography of your audience, what types of real estate they are looking for, the most preferred locations and so on can indicate who your target audience are.
By focusing your social media marketing strategy on this particular target audience, you are more likely to get the responses you are looking for – more likes, shares, leads and possibly converting them into customers.
4. Select the Social Media Channels
Next up, you answer the “where” in your roadmap for social media marketing strategy!
There are several social media channels and many of them are quite popular.
But the fact is that you can not target them all, not in one go!
When creating a roadmap for social media marketing strategy, you need to handpick those few channels which hold the greatest potential for your business.
And how do you select?
Based on your understanding of the target audience and the unique content that you create.
Instagram or Pinterest can be your ideal choices if you are planning to engage your followers with images. For initiatives and well-rounded advertising, you may focus on Facebook. LinkedIn suits the best for B2B marketing. It is up to you to decide which one of these you want to include in your roadmap for social media marketing strategy.
While long-form videos can be best marketed on YouTube, you can target the cream of blogging sites for sharing text-based content.
To make the most out of social media marketing strategy, you can run different campaigns on select channels simultaneously and achieve amazing goals.
5. Create Engaging Content
The next step in our social media roadmap is to create exceptional content. Remember, when on social media, posts and images go viral in no time. While top quality content has the capacity to boost your brand’s credibility, poor content may damage this image irreparably.
Let’s face it, your audience will not like or share run-of-the-mill content. Let’s say you are a blogger focused on the lifestyle and wellness niche. But since the space is saturated with great content, it’s important to present your content either in a completely new format or written from an interesting angle. That’s possibly your only chance to stand out in an overcrowded niche.
You get the idea, right?
However, generating new content ideas at scale is easier said than done. Thankfully, there are several tools like HubSpot Blog Ideas Generator to help you find engaging ideas for writing.
Image source – HubSpot
By content, we not only refer to the written content but visual content as well. If you want to see the power of visual content, take a look at some of the leading profiles on Instagram. West Elm, Shake Shack, Etsy, and hundreds of other brands have built an empire purely on the basis of visuals.
Incorporating images, videos, GIFs, memes, stories, reels and so on into your roadmap to social media marketing strategy will make it highly effective.
If you have an in-house team, they can focus on creating fresh and engaging content that readers would love. You can even consider outsourcing social media content creation and let another team bring their expertise and skills to your social media marketing.
6. Leverage Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing can be highly valuable and you should consider it while designing the roadmap for social media marketing strategy.
The best thing about collaborating with influencers is that they already own a very active community. The people who follow them are loyal to the extent that they swear by the influencer’s recommendations.
One of the influencer marketing best practices is to shortlist a few influencers on their authority and the industry you are targeting. When such people advocate your brand, the efforts are seen as more credible than direct advertising by the brands.
For instance, see how Oral-B found an innovative way to collaborate with influencer Karl Conrad to market their limited edition electric toothbrush.
Image Source – Instagram
When you get influencers to promote your product, they can help you craft campaigns precisely based on what the audiences are looking for. That’s why influencer marketing should be a part of your roadmap for social media marketing strategy.
Result? You can access an untapped audience base and build a quality brand presence.
7. Build a Community
Customer engagement is a vital part of your roadmap for social media marketing strategy. To step up your engagement with your audience on social media platforms, you can go ahead and build a community.
Why a community, you ask?
Because your fans are always looking for credible information related to your niche. By building a community and feeding them constantly with stellar content will help you nurture your followers and simultaneously become an authority on the subject.
Christel Oerum’s Diabetes Strong is a great example of a buzzing community. This private group on Facebook has 22.8k members who discuss and share ideas about leading a healthy life with diabetes.
Image Source – Facebook
One of the benefits of influencer marketing is that influencers can help you build an active community on social media quickly. They are exceptional at managing close-knit groups and you can learn from them too.
While preparing a roadmap for social media marketing strategy, you can plan to regularly engage your community with surveys, contests, live Q&A sessions and much more to build a valuable relationship.
8. Measure your Success and Improve
This last step of the roadmap to social media marketing strategy can easily get neglected.
The truth is, the proof of the pudding or marketing strategy in our case, is in the assessment. Irrespective of whether you have achieved all the goals or not, it is a must to analyze the results.
The insights derived from the analysis help you track the progress of each social media campaign. The data also helps you understand what strategies worked for you and where you fell short. Such evaluation is absolutely necessary for any successful roadmap for social media marketing strategy.
If you haven’t succeeded in the first attempt, don’t quit. Identify the areas to be improved and start reworking on them.
1. What is a social media marketing strategy?
Social media marketing refers to the practice of promoting or advertising your brand on various social media channels.
A social media marketing strategy outlines your marketing goals, how you want to achieve these goals and their analysis.
2. How do you plan a social media marketing strategy?
You should consider 3 important factors while planning a social media marketing strategy.
- Your audience
- Your goals
- Your resources
3. What are the five most effective social media marketing strategies?
- Create Personalized experiences for your customers
- Adopt a diverse content strategy
- Create a community
- Invest in influencer marketing
- Run cross-channel campaigns
4. What are the 8 steps to a successful social media strategy?
- Understand the power of social media
- Define your goals
- Research you audience
- Create and curate content tailored for your audience
- Select social media channels
- Collaborate with influencers
- Build a community
- Assess your progress
5. Why do you need an effective social media marketing strategy?
This is why you need an effective social media marketing strategy
- You can share your brand story
- You can reach out to an enormous audience with a small budget
- Understand your competitors’ tactics better
- Build a relationship with your custom audience
- You can influence your audiences purchasing decisions
- Build a positive reputation for your brand
- You can generate revenue too
The straightforward answer is “it depends”.
It depends on your goals and the pace at which you are proceeding to achieve those goals.
Ideally, though, marketers say that you may have to wait for at least 6 months to see quantifiable results.
Are You Ready to Create Your Own Roadmap for Social Media Marketing Plan?
Are you feeling, all pumped up to create a customized social media roadmap?
We hoped so.
Social media is a powerful platform to encourage interaction between customers and brands to create a cohesive community. Creating trust and authority should be the primary goal of your social media marketing efforts.
By explaining the steps to creating a roadmap for social media marketing strategy, I hope I have given you a fairground to get started.
What do you have to say about these steps for a roadmap for social media marketing strategy? Do you have a tip of your own to share?
Go ahead and share your thoughts in the comment section below. I am all ears.