Facebook isn't just about connecting with family, Instagram isn't solely about posting photos of your food and Twitter isn't just about arguing with trolls about politics. And while, generally, this is what it’s used for, social media's impact on business can't be overstated. That's why it's important businesses and brands correctly conceptualize and implement a cohesive social media management plan. And that’s why you need to correctly strategize your social posts. Here are some tips.

Choose the correct platforms

Yes, you could open accounts for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat, and more for your business. But it’s likely that your target market isn’t on all these channels. They’re unlikely to be keeping on top of the hottest marketing trends and following only the up-and-coming networks. And if they’re not spending their time there, it’s fairly pointless that you spend your time and money creating content for all of these different platforms. The first mistake social media management teams make is duplicating content. How many times have you seen brands repurpose content across Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram? And how many of those times did you immediately unfollow?

For example, even if your audience is on both Facebook and Instagram, it’s likely they want to see different content there. On Facebook, they want to see content that is text heavy and informative while they want to see beautiful images on Instagram. Think about what your audience wants to see on each platform and then give them that. Remember, when people receive value, they’ll be more likely to buy your products or use your services.

Post at consistent times

There are plenty of brands which don’t keep to a consistent posting schedule. They’ll post once every couple weeks or months, suddenly become super active and then go back to their inconsistent posting. The key to a successful social media management plan is to be consistent. You need to do some research about the days and times when your audience is online most often and then plan your posts around this research. It’s important that you create an expectation, like posting daily at 8 am or weekly on Fridays at 11 am and then stick to that schedule conscientiously. Of course, this is difficult when your audience is in different time zones, but when you post often enough and your audience is engaged with your brand, audience members will be sure to see it.

Be human

It’s right there in the name, “social” media. Your posts shouldn’t seem like they’re being created by a bot. Your posts should follow your business tone and corporate identity. After all, you wouldn’t expect a brand known for its light-hearted, cheeky branding to answer questions 100% seriously. And in the same way, a corporate company which deals with serious issues, like legality or medical insurance, wouldn’t post jokes or memes to their timelines. There’s a fine line to tread in always getting the tone of your posts right, but it should always be consistently human. Your customers, both existing and potential, want to know there’s a real person creating those posts and responding to their queries.

You need a social media management strategy

A social media management strategy is essential. You can’t just post what you feel like posting, when you feel like it. You need to plan what you’re going to post well in advance. A social media calendar takes a lot of planning and awareness. Sure, you can add ad hoc content later, if appropriate. But it’s essential that the bones of a solid plan are already in place. There are many tools you can use to start your planning: Hubspot, Hootsuite, and Buffer are all options.

Always respond

Remember the last time you reached out to a brand online and they didn’t respond? It’s a safe bet that you didn’t have much time for them after that. The reality is not one customer comment should go unanswered. Not one. Not ever. You should treat your social media as a method of showing off just how well you treat your customers. You should have a strategy which incorporates multiple levels of responses. The staffers who are the first to respond, those who may have more details and, lastly, those who will follow up and ensure the issue has been correctly resolved. Treating your customers well will always be the most effective method of new and popular marketing trends.

Social media monitoring can help you stay on top of these conversations. We’ve written before about why social media monitoring is essential for every business as an increased number of customers use it to connect with the brands they use and love. If you’d like to read our tips for what you can do to improve social media strategies, check out our recent article.

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