There are 6 key elements that all effective social marketing plans should include.
1. Company Vision
The first step in writing a marketing plan is identifying a clear and complete company vision. Your company vision influences your plan. It includes your company mission statement, grand vision, and describes your brand identity/company culture.
Understand how to properly set goals. The two most important things when setting goals are
- an awareness of benchmarks, and
- following the SMART goals guidelines.
Set long term goals first. What steps do you need to climb to achieve that goal? The small steps are milestones. Set up a milestone timeline to help you reach goals on time. Long term social media goals should be milestones that will help you achieve your business goals.
Part of setting goals is understanding benchmarks. Benchmarks help identify how others are doing so you can set realistic goals. Look at these three areas for benchmarks:
- your industry,
- competition, or
- company history.
When creating a social marketing plan it is important to set benchmarks for where you are now. This will be a critical piece of tracking progress and analyzing results.
4. Social Media 101
A basic understanding of the top social media networks will be priceless. You’ll want to know the features available on each network and how to optimize them. It’s also important to understand what marketing strategies are good to use on each network.
5. Tracking System
Set up your tracking system. Create a spreadsheet and schedule dates on your calendar to sit down and record the data. Include any notable quantifiable information. Your tracking system is only as effective as your analysis. Challenge yourself to identify trends by comparing your data to your industry and competition. Perhaps there were fluctuations due to seasonal changes. Be willing to adjust your plan. Fluidity is key.
The sixth and final thing you eed for a success social marketing plan is a calendar. Whether you like to schedule on pen and paper or prefer to use an online calendar like Google Calendar, you should develop a system for planning and tracking your social media efforts. The key dates to include on your calendar are:
Long Term Business Goals
Social Media Goals
Social Media Milestones
Posts to Schedule
National Theme Months