Social Media Strategy: Planning to SucceedBuilding a social media strategy may take time, but if you plan carefully, your brand-building efforts can reap exceptional rewards. If you’ve never dabbled in social media, the task can seem daunting, but social networks can effectively target a receptive audience and build your brand.

Social Media Strategy 101: Know Your Audience

Before you plan out what you’re going to say on social media, spend time learning about who you’ll be talking to. Finding your audience is key to a successful social media strategy.

Social networks can cut a pretty wide swath, and they will put your business into contact with people who aren’t part of your target audience. Perhaps these casual connections will see your messages as part of an advertising campaign, or simply because they’re a “friend of a friend” who is part of your target demographic.

How do these casual contacts happen? Certainly, in a variety of ways, but here’s something to consider: about 25% of people on Facebook don’t ever adjust their privacy settings. If the default privacy settings for Facebook (or any other social network) are loose, the users’ own posts, plus the posts of others (including yours) may be distributed to all of their contacts.

On the one hand, you can see this as an opportunity to reach people you may not otherwise contact, but here’s another way to see this: the more “non-targets” you have in your audience, the less effective your message will be.

Before you map out your social media strategy, talk to your customers about which social media platforms they use. Ask them what kind of information they find useful, and find out how they use the Internet. Today, about half of all US adult consumers have a smartphone or tablet or both. Knowing how your consumer base connects to their social networks can also help you plan a successful social media strategy.

Knowing who your target audience is and choosing the right social networking tool(s) to reach them have a lot to do with social media strategy success. Facebook may be the biggest social network around, but it may not be the best social network for your business or your fledgling social media strategy. Knowing your audience will help you understand their social media preferences. Once you know what social media networks and devices your target audience uses, then you can begin to craft a targeted, effective social media strategy using their preferred social media tools.

If you would like more information about developing a social media strategy for your business, or don’t know where to start, please contact our Creative Director, Dave Ramsell or give Dave a call at (330) 243-0651 to set up a consultation.

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