“All you need is the plan, the road map, and the courage to press on to your destination.” – Earl Nightingale
I write this post as I’m planning my business. This topic has been on my mind a lot lately.
Why is social media planning so important?
- It forces you to define your goals (which should be SMART goals)
- Planning makes you decide how you want to achieve your goals
- You stay focused on the channels on the best channels for your business and target market, as well as how to use those channels.
Thinks of it this way – if you know where you’re going, but not how to get there, you might eventually reach your destination. It just might take you a lot longer to get there. Planning is like a road map or a trip planner – you choose the best route to take to get to your destination.
To put this into a social media context: you need to identify goals, then map out the tactics that will help you reach those goals. Then, during the execution phase, measure your efforts based on your goals and adjust your tactics as needed.
The steps for making a social media plan:
- Define your social media strategy/goals that support your overarching marketing goals.
- Choose your social networks, based on where your target customers spend their time online.
- Completely fill out your chosen social profiles, branding them as appropriate for your business.
- Start writing – find your voice, and choose the tone with which you’ll post.
- Determine your posting methods, develop your editorial calendar around that.
- Find your favorite social media tools to help you manage your presence.
- Test, measure, and analyze each chosen channel. Determine what works, what doesn’t, and adjust accordingly.
- Engage your audience – listen to what they have to say.
- Repeat steps 6-8 as needed.
Remember, social media is a support for your business, one marketing channel among many. Being good at social media is going to help your business, but it’s not a magic bullet to success. Jay Baer, who is an incredible marketer, author, podcaster, and genius in the industry, reminds us: