So many social media articles and blogs are focused on how to optimize your current social presence. But what if you're just starting out?
We've put together a list of the very first steps you should take in launching your company's presence on social media.
1. Choose an Experienced Team Member (or Hire One)
Managing social media for business is not something you can pick up in a day. It's important to choose a team member who has previous experience running social media pages for businesses -- not just in their personal life. If this person doesn't exist within your current team, hire them or outsource the work. Some social media management firms can be expensive, so be sure to shop around and choose the one that feels right for you. In the end, choosing the right person (or team) is worth the investment. You'll get better results, sooner, and won't waste the time and money it takes to bring someone up to speed.
2. Develop a Strategy
We've all heard the phrase, "If you throw sh*t against a wall, some of it has gotta stick." When it comes to social media, you can't just post whatever feels right or talk only about your business. It simply won't stick and will not impress your audience. We strongly believe that in order to have a successful social media presence, you must first develop a personalized strategy. A great social media strategy should answer these six important questions.
- Why are you on social media?
- What are you saying on social media?
- Who are you talking to on social media?
- Where are you placing your message?
- When are you sharing content?
- How are you getting this done efficiently?
Here's another blog that goes into much more detail on developing a killer social media strategy.
3. Sneak a Peek at Your Competitors
We guarantee you that you'll be able to find a competitor or two who's doing social media right. How will you know? Don't just judge them by their follower count. Scroll down their pages to see what level of engagement they're getting. How many likes, comments and shares are they receiving on each post? Once you've identified a few competitors to review, dig into their profiles. Find out what type of content they're posting and how often they post. Analyzing their activity in a competitive analysis will allow you to develop an advantage within your social media strategy.
4. Reserve Your Company Name
81% of all small and medium-sized businesses use social media. (Tweet this!)
There's a chance that your business name might already be taken, so don't waste any time! Have your social media manager visit each social media site and set up a business page in your preferred name. If your name isn't available, it's always good to have a back-up. For example, 'Social Haven Marketing' wasn't available when we set up our company Facebook page. So instead, we used 'The Social Haven.'
5. Solidify Your Company Messaging
It's extremely important to have solid, consistent messaging across your website and all social media pages. Take the time to create a messaging document which will serve as an anchor for how you talk about your company in all marketing initiatives. A good messaging document should have the following components:
- Unique Value Proposition
- Elevator Pitch
- Boiler Plate
- Buyer Personas, Pains & Your Solution
- Competitive Positioning
Don't worry if you don't know what these things are. Here's an article to get you started with your company messaging.
6. Commit The Time
Managing a successful social media presence is not a full time job, but it also shouldn't be dumped on someone who already does full time work. Once you're up and running on social media, expect your social media manager to commit 5-10 hours per week. This should include weekly updates to the corporate team and monthly (or more frequent) metrics reports which analyze the efforts and present a clear plan for improving over time.