What’s Your Social Media Plan?

Posted by Heather Villa, CMA, MBA, MSM on December 21, 2009 in: Business - Plain & Simple, Social Media Marketing

planningAs 2009 winds up, we’re working hard to finish this year well but our thoughts are also turning towards how we’ll succeed and grow our businesses in the year to come.

Without a doubt, social media should play a key role in your business’ client-generation effort. So, if you haven’t developed a social media marketing plan yet, now is the time to do so.

What should go into your social media plan?

  1. Start with your current business goals. Knowing these are key to social media success. What do you want to achieve? Market share? Market prominence? Thought leadership? Profitability? Cash flow? Sure, you probably think they’re all great but you likely have a handful of business goals you’ve already identified for this year.
  2. Next, list the outcomes you hope to achieve from social media as they relate to your goals. Make sure they are related to your goals. If you list an outcome that isn’t related to your goals, table it for now. You might be able to strive for it in the future but you will just waste your time now if you work towards it.
  3. Then, determine what activities will achieve those outcomes. Is it engagement? Connection? Sharing? Adding value? Personal connection? Social media offers all of these and more.
  4. Now, list the social media that will help you to perform the activities you’ve just listed. If you’re not sure, investigate. If you still don’t know, ask.
  5. Finally, put together a plan for how you will use this social media in your work. When will you use that particular social media? How long will you spend each day? What will you say or do?

Examples
Here is a really simple examples to illustrate: Charlie runs a chocolate factory.

  1. Current business goals: Charlie wants to become recognized as a leader in his industry.charlie_and_the_chocolate_factory_06
  2. Outcomes: Charlie wants to be seen associating with his peers and contributing value to their businesses.
  3. Activities: Charlie needs a public forum where he can share the value he wants to provide to other chocolate factor owners.
  4. List Social media: This sounds like a job for Twitter!
  5. Plan to use social media: Charlie decides that he will follow everyone in the chocolate-making industry. He also decides to tweet primarily “to” them and interact with them. And, he gathers information and value-adding content that he can tweet regularly. Then, he schedules time each day to tweet.

Now it’s your turn
Create your own plan. It will probably have bigger and more complex goals and you’ll likely end up with more than one social media site to use, but it follows the same principle as above. Hurry! You’ve got a week and a half to get it up-and-running before the New Year starts!

Happy Planning!

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