Social media marketing is a slog for many of us contending with the nuts and bolts of marketing operations and communications. However, when 73% of marketers feel they benefit from marketing on social media, it’s clear that using these platforms is pretty much unavoidable.
How do you ensure your team’s efforts don’t go to waste? As you do for other marketing approaches, you need a social media marketing plan.
Even if you already have a plan, you should revisit it annually to ensure you keep up with the ever-evolving social media trends. Are you ready to dig in and find out how to create an effective plan for 2023? Let’s get started.
Why a Social Media Marketing Plan Is Essential
Getting social media right is hard work. It requires more than tossing up the occasional post, crossing your fingers, and hoping your target audience sees it (don’t we all wish it worked that way!). Even though an estimated nearly 5 billion people hop on one or more of their favorite platforms daily, the competition for brands is fierce.
Developing a strategy for engaging with social media can increase your chances of connecting with your target audience and reaping the benefits of being actively involved. It prevents you from shouting into the wind on the most blustery days.
Your social media marketing plan provides a framework for utilizing the platforms effectively and efficiently. Implementing a strategy helps you:
- Stay focused on your goals.
- Define team member roles.
- Create helpful content for your target audience.
- Measure your success on each platform.
- Determine how to adjust your plan to improve performance.
Having a plan can reduce the feeling that your team is forever trudging up a steep incline with no signs of a payoff for your efforts.
How To Develop Your Plan for Social Media
Establishing a plan for your social media marketing is not all that different from content planning on other channels. With a solid approach in place, your team will have the direction it needs to grow organic traffic.
Define Your Goals
Your goals should be the foundation of your social media marketing plan. Approximately 75% of consumers research brands on social media, making these platforms a key touchpoint in the buyer’s journey.
Understanding how vital social media is for consumers can drive your goal development. Goals often center on increasing brand awareness, engagement, thought leadership, and inbound leads and conversions. You might also want specific goals for posting and commenting frequency, website traffic generation, and ROI improvements.
Audit Your Current Social Media Accounts
We’re assuming your brand is already engaged to some degree on social media. Before you go any further, you need to audit existing content on your platforms.
Your audit will help you identify what works in your existing content when measured against your goals. After analyzing content performance, you may also need to tweak the goals in your social media marketing plan.
Using Divvy’s analytics tools simplifies the audit process, and our content audit template takes simplification another giant step forward.
Determine Where Your Audience Hangs Out
Analyzing post-performance data may also provide insight into different audience segments’ social media platform preferences. However, you will likely need to dig deeper to determine where your audience hangs out most.
Though Facebook continues to dominate the social media market, other platforms are often better venues for reaching consumers. Additionally, younger generations are more likely to engage on alternative platforms like TikTok and Instagram.
Make sure you have a presence in the social spaces where your audiences are spending time.
Learn What Your Audience Digs on Different Sites
While it might sound great to cross-post identical content across accounts, that tactic doesn’t cut it in 2023, so you don’t want to include it in your social media marketing plan. Research the types of content your target audience prefers on various social media platforms. Look for trends in topics and formats and consider where your audience is on its buyer’s journey.
Check Out the Competition
Find out what the competition is up to on their social media channels. Learn from their successes as well as their mistakes. It’s a good idea to document what sets you apart and how to use your unique qualities and offerings to your advantage in social media posts (without coming across like an ad every time you post).
Develop Social Media Content Themes
We recommend including content themes in your social media marketing plan. You’ll want to base these themes on your research about your audience’s content preferences, interests, and needs.
Develop guidelines for how your team will convey these themes in posts. Consider content that demonstrates:
- Audience pain points and your ability to solve them
- Your authority on matters of interest to your audience
- Your brand’s values, purpose, and personality
Occasionally, post content directly related to your product or services.
Establish Post Formats
Outline the post formats you intend to utilize on each platform and include publishing frequency for each format. Make sure you mix it up a bit.
Video content rules these days, especially short-form videos. However, posting other formats — such as images, carousels, and infographics — on platforms that allow multiple formats is a good idea.
Set Up a Posting Schedule
Your social media marketing plan should include your posting cadence for each platform. Make sure your posting schedule reflects best practices for each platform.
Using Divvy’s platform, you can schedule your posts on your content calendar. Use our filters to help ensure you maintain a daily or weekly posting cadence for each platform. Our filtering capabilities also make it easier to prevent content oversaturation and gaps.
Create a Content Audit Schedule
Finally, establish a social media audit schedule. Though you should do an in-depth audit at least annually, we suggest conducting a smaller-scale audit quarterly. You can set up reminders in Divvy to ensure you don’t forget.
Using Divvy To Implement Your Social Media Marketing Plan
Divvy provides an all-in-one content operations platform with all the tools your team needs to collaborate on a strategy. Once your social media marketing plan is in place, our calendar, workflow builder, content workspace, and analytics tools make it easy to execute and track. Request a demo today to see our platform in action.