Confessions of a Digital Strategist

Taking a “Leap” of Faith With Your Social Media Strategy

, Feb 23, 2016

CATEGORIES: Social Media

We’re three quarters of the way through February; a leap month. A monumental calendar moment so exclusive that it only shows face every four years. And, when it does, it certainly feels so special and so out of the norm that you can’t help but feel inspired to change things up a bit!Social media strategy

For many companies, breaking out of the norm and feeling inspired to change things up by taking that proverbial leap of faith — as it relates to their social media strategy — is easier said than tweeted (see what I did there?). But social media is an opportunity. A chance to position, promote and brand to the masses. And, yet, so many (and, I stress MANY) businesses are oh so careless with their social channels; investing the least of amount of time or company resources into seeing it succeed. Assigned are the interns to take the social reigns—driving what could potentially be one of the company’s most integral branding vehicles without strategy, focus, perspective or understanding.

So it’s easy to see how social channels become stagnant entities — moving at the pace of molasses, and garnering very little traction or visibility. That’s exactly what you don’t want in a social strategy, which is specifically designed (and expected) to be immediate and fast.

That one “viral” message could really leverage your company, get it to the next level, position you as a thought leader, and make you a force to be reckoned with in a saturated marketplace. Conversely, sitting on your channels and monitoring them without any real plan in place can be a detriment; a hindrance to your brand; a missed opportunity.

And, so I impart on you three pieces of social advice:

  1. Hire an Expert

    I immensely believe in giving your social channels the respect they deserve and treating it as the necessary strategic communications initiative that it is. If you’ve appointed someone internally who can’t tell you the best times to post, the most popular types of posts, when the end user is online, when they are likely to convert and the most popular groups within each platform, then you are doing your company a disservice. Hire someone who gets it, e.g. a marketer who does this for a living and understands that social media strategy is what makes integrated communications effective and can help keep your company current.

  2. Take Risks

    Free your bird from its Twitter cage and let it take flight. Put a face to your name on Facebook. Promote the heck out of yourself on Instagram. Conduct A/B testing. Give into attempting a new messaging campaign or promotion. Be a conversation starter in a new LinkedIn group. The only way you learn about what works and what doesn’t is by trying every social outlet at your disposal.

  1. Be Consistent

There’s nothing worse than inconsistency on social. Readers expect you to be professional; to show up on time, at regular intervals, with your posts; to be on top of your game. Be consistent with when you post, set expectations and raise the gold standard among your peers. While you can take risks in between, the pillars of consistency based on when your end user is online and engaged is key to getting your social media strategy to the next level.

Social is an always moving machine. Even what I wrote above may be antiquated in a year’s time. Social media and Public Relations are ever changing. But, the one constant is the impact that social has on your company’s branding.

If you’re interested in learning more about how social media impacts your content strategy and digital strategy, and are a Boston Content, Boston Digital, or Boston PR professional, be sure to check out Pub Club of New England’s panel discussion at Wayfair on March 22nd at 7 PM. March Comms will be periscoping and tweeting it LIVE from our Twitter handle: @MarchComms!

To learn more about social media and PR measurement, listen to our recent podcast with measurement expert Katie Delahaye Paine: “PR Measurement: There’s No Such Thing as Intangibles.”