How to win at social media

Mark Smith, social whizz, and founder of social media marketing studio Double Up Social, chatted to us about all things, well, social. Read on to discover his seven quick steps for defining a social media strategy that kicks ass.

Social media is super powerful. It’s a direct link to your customers.

With so many options, platforms and tools, it can be hard to know where to start.

Mark Smith, social whizz, and founder of social media marketing studio Double Up Social, chatted to us about all things, well, social. Read on to discover his seven quick steps for defining a social media strategy that kicks ass.

1. Get down to business ️

What are you trying to achieve with your social strategy?

Before you work on social media, define your objectives. And make sure these tie into what the business is trying to achieve.

Mark recommends goals like increasing brand awareness, generating leads, increasing customer engagement and loyalty, driving web traffic, and gaining customer feedback.

Steer clear of vanity metrics like followers, page likes, and page views — it’s better to have 1,000 engaged followers who all turn into customers than 10,0000 who don’t.

Don’t expect to hit your goals overnight. Social media is all about building trust with the audience and it can take time.

2. Check out your competitors

Do your research on your competitors. What have they done well (and not so well) that you can learn from?

There are lots of things to look for. Check their bios to see what kind of CTAs they’re using (this will point to their objectives). See which platforms they’re using. Use Facebook Ad Library to see what kind of ads they’re running.

Use what your competitors are doing to inform your strategy, but don’t copy. Find your own opportunities, even if they’re in areas your competitors aren’t going after.

3. Who’s in the audience?

Work out who your target audience are.

This will come, in part, from your wider marketing strategy. But you can refine this to work out exactly who you should be talking to on social.

See who your competitors’ followers follow. Are there any trends you can pick out? This will help you make your customer personas even more detailed. For example, if you’re a smoothie brand you might find your audience tends to be interested in fitness.

Learning more about your audience can help you decide what kind of content to post and who to partner with (if you’ll be partnering with other brands or influencers).

4. Facebook vs. TikTok

Which social channels work best for your audience?

Look at where your audience is hanging out on social media and go there. Don’t try to go after too many platforms at once. Instead, pick a couple and work to build up your community before moving on.

Check out the demographics that tend to use the different platforms. TikTok and Instagram are (generally) for younger audiences, whereas LinkedIn has a more businessy vibe. Go after the platforms that make sense for your business and audience.

5. Social personality

How are you going to speak to your audience? Work out what your social tone of voice will be.

You might already have a wider tone of voice. Authenticity is key, so you should sound the same on social as you do on other channels. But you’ve got room to be a bit more communicative.

Think about what mood you’re trying to convey. What phrases could work well? Will you use emojis? If so, remember not to overdo it.

6. 80/20 rule ✅

Go back to your objectives. What are you going to say to achieve what you need to achieve?

Add value for your customers, don’t just sell. 80% of your content should be engaging, informative and educational for your customers. The other 20% can be more salesy and product-focused. Get the balance right – no one wants to follow a brand that only talks about themselves.

Do some research into trending hashtags in your niches. How does the community respond to different posts? This will help you understand what kind of content your audience wants to see.

Don’t forget to get your customers involved! Talk to them, ask them questions, get them to name stuff. Social media is all about conversation.

7. Roll with the punches

Adapt, adapt, adapt.

Mark recommends planning your social calendar out to about three months ahead. This gives you enough structure to schedule your posts ahead of time, but enough flexibility to react to new trends.

Social media moves quickly, with new features and trends coming in all the time. React as things happen and don’t be afraid to change your plans.

At the same time, make sure you’re monitoring, learning and improving as you go. Use tools like Falcon, Sprout and Metricool to pull all your social data together. Measure against the KPIs you set in the beginning. Chase what’s working and cut what isn’t.

Enjoyed Mark’s social pointers? Check out the full chat to hear even more about the wonderful world of social media.

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