Last month I gave a “Why Social Media?” presentation to Desert Business Association (DBA) members and guests as part of the DBA’s member education series.  It was a hit with the audience and so I’ve decided to make a series of posts from the presentation, which covers creating your social media strategy plan, so that you will spend your social media time on purpose, with purpose.

What do you mean by “Social Media” anyway?

For the purposes of these posts, social media means any media that is social in nature of its use. This could range from the social connection building sites we all know, like Twitter, Google+, Facebook, and LinkedIn, to apps that are very useful to project teams, for exampleGoogle’s Drive, Docs, Spreadsheets & Presentations, which enable project members to easily share files and collaborate on documents from creation to presentation. There are many more social sites that serve a variety of purposes, so many more than I can name.

Check out this list of social networking websites from Wikipedia for a glimpse.

So how do you know where to begin?

The first thing you need to know is why you are there.

Step 1: Write down your Objectives.

Your Assignment: Yes I’m serious, so go grab yourself a pen or pencil and your notebook and, of course, some coffee or tea.  Then write down your answers to these questions. Save your notes, because you will be referring back to them during the next post, Setting Goals.

What do you want to see happening with your business in 1 year, 3 years, 5 years?

List some of your overall business objectives.  This list will help you define your social media objectives, because those will support your overall business objectives. It’s ok for your Objectives to be broad and expansive! Your Objectives are your future, so go for it and think about your dream business, and list those Objectives that will take you there! Begin with 1 year, 3 year and 5 year objectives, but if your juju is strong and your mojo is flowing go ahead and take it out as far as you want to map it!

What are your business’s social media objectives?

List social media objectives that support your business objectives.  For example, if your one year business objectives include cultivating your brand awareness and increasing sales, then social media objectives that would support those might include:

  • Create and carry out brand awareness building campaign and drive traffic to web site
  • Sell products online
  • Provide new avenues of customer support

 

Social Media Strategy - objectives

Sometimes it might seem a bit overwhelming, a bright point at each end and a blur in between, wondering how to get from point A to point B. In the next few posts you’ll be mapping out how to get from point A to point B, by looking at your Objectives and breaking them down into doable project Goals. Each Goal reached will be a milestone on the road to achieving your Objectives …and you’ll see it’s really not so daunting after all.   So go ahead, take that nice, deep breath and relax 🙂

 

Some final thoughts

Social media is great for cultivating your brand identity and brand awareness. Every post you make, every pic you post reinforces your brand and reminds people of who you are. Your posts and pics provide constant reminders to your followers of the goods and services you and your business provide.

Pop Quiz slide

Just remember that, as with any other project, carrying out social media campaigns will require time dedicated to the many tasks involved. Later in this Social Media Strategy post series we’ll be defining the Action steps needed to reach your social media goals, and I’ll be reminding you to be realistic in planning the time needed and tcalendar your social media tasks! Because that can’t be said enough. You know, that part about how you need to understand the time involved in carrying out your social media tasks.

Take this post for example. The presentation it’s based on I worked on for several days. Then I wrote this blog post based on the presentation, and that took an hour. Then I went into my slideshow and converted some slides into images I could post here. Then I came back in the next day and added a bunch of stuff (this stuff, in fact because this point needs to be made often) and fixed a bunch of other stuff, because dammit Jim I’m not a writer, I’m a host, presenter, coach and teacher!  And now I get to go post it to my social sites, writing a brief intro for each. So lemme tell ya folks, it’s not always just five minutes and I’m gonna make that quick post.  Ok?  Ok!

In the next post in this Social Media Strategy series, we’ll be setting our social media Goals, woohoo!

 

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