Do you need to stop wasting time on social media? Well, many businesses have taken the plunge to set up Social Media accounts in the hope of promoting themselves and their services to a captive audience. However, many businesses use Social Media without a proper strategy in place or any means of analysing campaign success. So, let’s look at how we can make Social Media work and, most importantly, get results.
- Set yourself a goal: Why are you using Social Media? What do you hope to achieve by sending out tweets or posting to Facebook every day?All Social Media for businesses must have a goal. Your goals will vary depending on your business the Social Media platform you use. For example, your goal for using Facebook might be to generate traffic to your website whereas your goal for LinkedIn might be to schedule appointments with potential clients.
Stop wasting time on Social Media running around like a headless chicken.
Make your goals SMART (Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Results-focused and Time-bound). Give yourself a deadline to achieve the goal. Make sure the goals are realistic, and focused on the end result and something you can measure.
Be specific by putting a number or percentage to your goal. Here’s an example of a SMART goal: Increase website traffic from Facebook by 10% in the next 30 days.
Define your target audience: who are you trying to reach? where they live, their income, or, if you’re targeting other businesses, think about the size of business you work with, turnover, industry, number of employees and the person within the company you want to reach (owner, MD, Finance Director, HR Manager, etc.).
Defining your audience will help you decide which platforms you should be using as well as what content you post. Where do your target audience hang out? What content do they engage with?
- Create a plan: One of the biggest challenges I hear from business owners is knowing what to post and how to continually create content worth sharing. The key is to be organised and plan ahead.
You can stop wasting your time on Social Media by planning and scheduling your content.
Get a pen and paper (or your favourite note taking app) and write down each month as a header. Start jotting down ideas for each month until you build up a 3 month plan of content. You may want to focus around key dates throughout the year like Mother’s Day, Christmas and school holidays.
Social Media for business is harder when your business isn’t seasonal and has multiple audiences. I like to create a theme for each month so all my posts are centred on a specific topic or targeted at a specific market. This helps to focus the activity of businesses on Social Media.
- Know your reporting tools: One of favourite parts of teaching Social Media is showing people the analytics reports that are available to them. For many, it’s the first time they have looked at them, for others it’s the first time they have understood how powerful the information is to their future campaigns.
You can really make Social Media work for your business if you use and act on analytics data.
Facebook insights can give you key information about when your followers are online, the demographics you are reaching and the types of posts people are more likely to engage with.Twitter Analytics can show just how many people have seen your tweets and looked at your profile, who your top followers are and which tweets have had the most engagement.
If your goal is to push traffic to your website, you’ll need to be familiar with Google Analytics. This free tool will give you a huge amount of data about your website traffic and can also show you how many people visit from your Social Media channels and what action they take once they are on your website. If you sell products through your website, you can even track sales that come from Social Media and calculate a return on the time you have invested.
- Lather, rinse, and repeat: whatever you do on Social Media, make sure it’s consistent. Having taught Social Media for over 3 years now, I’ve seen countless businesses get enthusiastic about posting to their networks for about a week, then losing the momentum. You need to be seen as active on Social Media daily if possible. The more you put into your online presence the more you will get out of it.
Make sure to keep up the good work
Stop wasting your time on Social Media by posting without a plan or goal. The answer to the question how to make Social Media work for your business is strategic planning – be SMART – it will pay off in the long run