Do you need to set up a social media campaign? Do you need some help getting started?

If your business is considering a social media campaign, planning is paramount. By incorporating these five core components you will be well on your way to running an effective social media campaign. Remember, a planned campaign is a successful campaign.

What are your goals?

The first and most important stage is to work out your goals, do you want to increase brand awareness, drive more traffic, increase customer loyalty or improve conversion rates? Once you’ve chosen your goal, you can work out your strategy. If you are new and want to increase brand awareness you should use BuzzSumo to find the trending and most popular stories in your industry. If you want to increase customer loyalty, implement a photo sharing contest into your campaign and use this opportunity ask for their email address.

Your goals need to be measurable so you can track your progress and this is done by using key metrics. This includes Facebook likes, Twitter followers, shares, retweets, conversions etc. Having these objectives and using the data available allows you to react quickly when certain strategies are not working. HooteSuite and Buffer are great social media management tools that provide this data.


Find your audience

The next step is to find and understand your audience and where they spend their time. Different segments of the population are found on different social channels. If you’re having trouble finding where your audience is, you can use social interaction reporting on Google Analytics. This will tell you which channels send visitors to your site. Below is a brief overview of the most popular social networks.

Research and monitor

Once you know where your target audience is, start listening to them. Work out what hashtags and keywords are connected to your brand and pay close attention to what is being said about you, this information can be used in your campaign. If no one is talking about you yet, pay attention to what is being said about your competitors, their weaknesses can become your strengths. Also, pay close attention to your competitors and look at what content types and information get the most engagement. Social listening is just as important during your campaign so make sure you are listening in throughout the campaign. Google Alerts and Quora are great tools for social listening.

Set a timeline

Establishing an editorial calendar is a great way to stay on track with your campaign. Remember to include upcoming events, social media content and editorial content. Schedule your social media content in advance rather than doing this throughout the day. Your engagement and customer service should be unrehearsed but your content should be written ahead of time. Remember you should keep a balance with the type of content you are promoting, the 80/20 rule states that 20% of your content should be promoting your brand and 80% should interest your audience and engage them in conversations. If you don’t have a calendar, you can use this excel template to help you get started.

Prepare content

When preparing your content it is important to make sure it stays in line with your brand image, but to take it a step further you should also create a tone for your brand. Ask yourself, if your brand was human what kind of personality would it have? Write down a list of adjectives and think about how you’d like your brand to be perceived. When you are creating content or responding to customers, make sure it is in line with your tone.

Visual content has a lot of anecdotal evidence in its favor, posting images and videos are going to increase engagement. You can offer tips, advice, quotes, how-to’s, photos of your products and more.

Chose a hashtag for your campaign that fits with your content and brand. Research which hashtags are taken already and which could be useful. Ritetag is a useful tool for researching hashtags. You also might want to change the visuals on your social media accounts to match your campaign. If you’re having a competition you could put this in your header image along with your hashtag,

Paid advertising can be a great addition to any social media campaign if you have an advertising budget make sure you familiarize yourself with the platform and prepare any content ahead of time.

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