Creating a social media content plan can take your online presence to the next level.
Not only will it make your life a million times easier – so no more forgetting that important date (we’ve all been there) – it will also streamline your content for success.
If you’re not sure where to start with creating a social media content plan, and you’re currently just posting as and when you deem necessary, then stick around – you might just change your mind on how you manage your social media content!
What is a social media content strategy?
To put it simply, a content plan consists of:
- What content you want to post
- Where you want to post it
- When you want to post it
It can definitely get more detailed than that, but that’s the basics!
To get started on what makes a good content plan we recommend doing the following:
1. Setting your goals
It’s important to identify what goals you want to achieve from your social media content. This could include reaching a certain number of new followers, increasing engagement, or even an increase in website referrals from your social media channels.
Once you’ve got together a list of goals that you want to work towards, it’s time to put them into action. Write down how you think you may achieve them. For example, if your goal is to increase your referrals from social media – how do you plan to do this? What does your social media content actually need to do to encourage this? Research and planning are key during this stage. It’s also important that your goals align with your overall business objectives to make sure that you’re going down the right route.
You can then track your goals through specific metrics. If you’re wanting to increase your brand awareness for example, this can be tracked by overall reach as well as following, likes and shares. It’s important to note that you may want to track different metrics depending on the platform, and goal.
2. Get to know your audience.
There are plenty of online tools that can help identify who your audience is made up of – even social media platforms themselves have inbuilt social media metrics that may help you identify your audience personas. Once you have a basic understanding of who your audience is, and why they may engage with your content, you might want to put all of these together into an audience persona document so that you can refer back to this in the future when planning content. This helps you understand exactly who you are talking to when creating content for your social media channels.
You can read our blog about buyer personas here.
3. Competitor Analysis
Knowing what your competitors are doing is an important part of creating your social media plan. By identifying competitors in your industry, you can identify your own strengths and weaknesses – relative to each competitor.
For example, you could compare ‘post frequency’. One of your competitors may only post every 6-8 weeks, which isn’t very consistent if you are wanting to build a strong online presence. This gives you insight into your own performance; if you’re posting once a week, this is one of your strengths.
This is sometimes also referred to as a SWOT analysis. SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. This is a more detailed version of a competitor analysis, and helps you understand where you position against other businesses.
4. Complete a social media audit
A social media audit will assess how you perform across a variety of key metrics. It usually consists of your profile, branding and SEO opportunities, what hashtags you use, what content brings you the most success and what you’re missing.
You can also track your results over a longer period, and average them out to set a benchmark of how you should be performing on a month-to-month basis.
This will help you identify what you can do moving forward to strengthen your social media presence, and also what you currently are doing well.
If you need help with putting together a social media audit, we can help you stay ahead.
5. Create your social media planner
Once you’ve completed all of the above, you should be able to put everything together that you’ve found to start mapping out a content plan. Starting with a weekly plan can help get you get going so it’s not too overwhelming, then once you’ve been able to get going with that, you can start mapping out monthly content.
To keep track of where all your content is, where it’s going and when its being posted we recommend using content planning software similar like Airtable. This is a free platform which helps you brainstorm ideas, attach your image assets and share draft posts with other members of your team. It’s really easy to use, and already comes in a calendar form – so you don’t need to worry about creating fancy spreadsheets.
Why do I need to bother with all that planning?
So, you’ve learned what a social media strategy consists of, but why do you need to use one?
- It will save you so much time in the long run!
- It will make sure you’re consistently working toward your digital goals.
- Your content will become stronger and more concise.
- Content ideas will come more freely to you leaving room for creativity.
To put it shortly, these are the main reasons why we recommend planning and preparing all of your social media content. There’s probably many more positive reasons to get ahead of your planning – but do try and strike a balance with reactive vs. proactive social media, as you don’t want to miss out on valuable content and important conversations your followers may be having!
Need help getting started?
Mapping out digital content strategies can feel really overwhelming, especially if you aren’t completely sure what direction you need to head in. Splitpixel offers Social Media Marketing solutions that can help build your online brand, including social media content strategies.Get in touch!