It’s a new year with much to get excited about and when we think about a social media strategy and plan for a new year, or a new campaign, or whatever it may be – there is so much enthusiasm you can bring into the mix. Whether you are working on your own business marketing, or you’re helping a client reach their goals, always bring the excitement with you to the table. If it’s not there, come back when it is!
For content marketing and social media managers, coming up with fresh and new content for clients can become difficult and stagnant, especially if the client doesn’t have anything new to give. But there are ways to work around this and producing content that brings their social channels to life is part of the job… you are the creative one and it’s your job to make the magic happen!
But where do you start?
– Have you lost your enthusiasm?
– Are you having trouble sticking to, or creating a plan that works?
– Are you skipping the planning stages, hoping for the best?
The best advice we can give as an agency, is to understand your client’s (or your own) business right down to the nitty gritty detail. What customers are they trying to attract, what makes them special, what can they offer, what do they give that’s of value, and what is unique about them that will stand out from the competition?
Then it’s about putting everything into a process.
Create a strategy
Make an action plan
= Results… success
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I heard an interview this morning with Lola Lennox, Annie Lennox’s daughter, who was sharing about her new song that she had released, written and recorded at home during the Covid-19 lockdown. She was asked if she was a daydreamer and the answer she gave was that all songwriters are daydreamers as they have to pluck content from deep within in order to produce a song.
This struck me that we, as social media marketers, are also in that same boat. We write content for many clients at a time, often in completely different industries, but providing a (daily) flow of content for all. Where does that inspiration come from?!
To start with, you need to be creative in the first place. If you’re a business owner reading this and you’re struggling with implementing a good social media presence, don’t waste your time, find someone that can do it without struggle and that has the capacity to do a good job. It’s far better to have something done well, than half an effort that’s poor. If you are creative but are stuck for ideas, keep reading…
So, what comes first in the process of creating an awesome content calendar, and how do you come up with great both copy and graphics for each and every client, that is different and unique for each?
You need inspiration. This doesn’t come all at once or at a specific time – especially when you want it to – but often comes when you’re out and about or going about your everyday normality of life. When you’re out, always have a notebook or a phone to hand to keep a journal of the things that inspire you, otherwise by the time you get home, you’ll have forgotten everything!
Take a walk, read a book, have a chat on the phone with a friend, look out the window – all these different things can provide you with snippets of inspiration. Take photos or screenshots while you’re busy, doodle or draw pictures – whatever it is that brings out your creative streak.
Also, a great way to be inspired by the industry is to look at what content that industry is producing. Search for keywords in Instagram or Twitter to find the types of content which is gaining good engagement. Take a look at the profiles who are following these high engaging posts and see the types of posts they are enjoying too. If you can see what content works, it can inspire you to create things along the same line.
Your ideas don’t have to come all at once but collate all your material in a central place that when you come to your dedicated time to write content, you’ve got a bank of details to use.
Make a plan
A good content calendar is built on a strategy and an action plan, filled with much research and knowledge of the business and with their goals and targets at hand.
With an in depth understanding of the goals in mind, the content can be built around everything you have learned and gathered along the way. But don’t think sell, sell, sell at every opportunity – think of the bigger picture and the audience you’re speaking to. What do they want to hear or gain from having communication from the business?
Marketing strategy ideas:
- Create and understand the various personas you’ll be working with
- Research the business in depth
- Ensure branding throughout, in both copy, style and graphics
- Decide how many times to post during a week
- What type of content will match the brand
- What style of graphics will work
Pull all your plans together and work out how to fit everything in best with what’s happening within the business and the campaigns / goals that you want to meet, and you’ll have a content calendar that will run for ages, that you can come back to, adapt, amend, and recycle to keep recreating content.
Tip: Create content that is ‘evergreen’, that can be used again and again. For example, with one blog post, you could create a selection of posts to go with it and have them on a rolling cycle.
This process can be rolled out through all the various channels that you run as a social media manager. Different businesses will have different goals and focusses, but the thought basis behind it all is the same process for each.
Have you tried using a check list to help you stay on top of your social media marketing? You can download a FREE copy of our Social Media Checklist here.
See the results – discover success!
The outcome of seeing everything fall into place and working as you hoped is satisfying to say the least. Everything that you’ve done and worked hard to put together has paid off. Keep the momentum going by engaging with everyone that interacts with your social channels. Engagement is key to building the brand and growing your followers. Of course, growing the likes and followers is great, but what is the ultimate goal – to bring in leads and eventually sales? Don’t forget to build relationships with your followers, they are human! A good brand is built on trust and loyalty, create those bonds by creating a good customer experience and you’ll be set.
Also, be sure to check your analytics on each social channels to see what has worked best, what type of content is gaining the best interaction and what times of day your audience is online. Understanding what your audience is enjoying from your content is a basis to grow, put this knowledge into your strategy and keep going.
When you go through the process above, you’ll find how easy it is to access the creativity in the back of your mind. Keeping a journal of things that inspire you, and photos along the way, is the best way to keep the bank of content flowing. You’ll soon find it all becomes routine and you’ll establish a system where awesome social media content comes naturally.
What top tips do you have to ensure you’re running a smooth social media management service for your clients? We’d love to hear your feedback in the comments below.
And if you’re a business looking for help in their social media, get in touch, we’d love to talk!
Written by Karen Petrauskas, owner of KJP Creative