Every great social media marketing campaign is underpinned by a basic wisdom:
That is, social media platforms will never market your business on their own.
Pretty simple on the face of it… You must first work out whom you need to connect with, then identify what content will get them to engage with you. Then deploy that content where your audience go to hang out – very often that will be their social media accounts.
Content Marketing Strategy Before Social Media Strategy
Know what to say before you decide where to say it. Social media marketing can be an incredibly powerful tool. But it must be delivered with a content-first approach if you are to avoid a disjointed delivery that quickly descends into misperception or gratuitous self-promotion.
Before you start reaching out to your public, ask yourself:
1. What are our business and marketing objectives?
2. Which groups and personas make up our audience?
3. What content will best connect us with them?
4. How can we best produce that content?
5. On which social media platforms will we find our audience?
6. How will we deliver our content on these social media?
If particular social networks present themselves as valuable then include them in the mix. If they don’t, chances are they’ll be a waste of time.
Stay Ahead of Changes in Social Media
Observing a content-first strategy means you don’t have to be at the mercy of the ever-changing social media landscape. Because your starting point is content and its delivery you simply choose whatever social media platform promises the best performance, and disregard the rest.
Who Owns Your Social Media Content?
From time to time you should curate useful content created by others. After all, sharing and contributing are essential aspects of social media. But your main focus should always be on delivering your own content, based on what will connect you with your audience. Content marketing should deliver your brand beliefs, values and experiences. It must help establish you as an authority. If you only share others’ content you will be helping them to success, not yourself.
Create Value-Added Social Media Content
With the right structure you can create content that suits an overall purpose, but also repurpose it in other spaces. This affords you more bang for your buck from each piece of content while enhancing the consistency of your delivery. A white paper can be repurposed into a series of blog posts. Each of those blog posts can be sliced up into social media updates. They deliver the same message, but in different ways that suit different media.
With the right value-added content strategy (and inventory) you don’t have to fret about saying something meaningful before your next social media deadline. You’ll have a war chest of quality content, ready to be reshaped and tailored for your audience across all social media.
Content Should be Part of Your Business Culture
A fruitful social media presence demands a swift and coherent response to events. If no one is driving production of the right kind of content, or knows what do with it, then you may as well draw a veil over your social media activity.
The answer? Get into a publisher mindset – make content a universal component of your business culture and thinking. If everyone in the organisation is aware of a need to contribute ideas and material you will naturally sound more present and authentic – because you are.
Follow and Measure Your Content Across Social Media
Be measuring all the time. And be ready to reshape your social content tactics where necessary. With accurate analysis tools you can identify what is working and what isn’t, and quickly make tweaks to optimise your social media performance.