Creating A Strategy
Creating A Strategy
Complete the following steps to best ensure your success on social media.
Determine who will be the primary person(s) responsible for updating and monitoring your site. This person should have enough time to check in on the site several times per day and be willing to manage conversations outside of normal business hours if needed. This person should also train and delegate responsibilities to other page admins and content moderators in case of his/her absence.
Think about what it is that you would like to accomplish with a social media presence and if a dedicated channel is entirely necessary to achieve your department’s needs. Understanding your goals will help you choose the appropriate tool, create relevant content and understand the best way to reach your target audience. This should also give you a clearer picture of how social media fits into your overall communication strategy.
Understanding whom you’d like to engage on social media will help you figure out which channel will be most efficient. It will also help you tailor content to make them want to interact online.
Become a consumer of social media through active listening. Take a look at how different social communities work and how similar organizations approach social media. Follow important thought leaders in the industry. This will help you pinpoint the content people find most valuable and better plan what unique contribution your social media presence will fulfill.
Select Social Media Channel(s)
All social media channels have their own unique standards and inherent qualities. After actively listening, you may find that that you only need Twitter’s short, 140-character bursts for your goals. Or you may have a more robust stream of photos, videos and content that requires a strong Facebook community. During selection, it’s important to remember to not “bite off more than you can chew.” Only establish a presence if you have sufficient resources to allocate toward development, content and monitoring.
Ensure you’ll have a consistent stream of content to share to not only attract, but also retain users. Will it be primarily news updates? Studies? Research developments? Event information? Photos? Videos? Begin populating your site with this information for several weeks before announcing it broadly. Consider sharing this with a small group of people to get feedback and gauge if the content you want to share is worthy of engagement.
Once you complete the above steps, you are officially ready to enter the world of social media! Use traditional means, such as Rowan Announcer or vanity URLs on your website, to let potential audiences know you exist in the social sphere and encourage them to follow you.
This is arguably the most important step. Set a timeline for when you will conduct an initial evaluation of your social media site’s success using the goals you identified at the forefront of the strategy. When you reach this timeline, you should be prepared to adjust your strategy to accommodate what is and isn’t working, or perhaps consider an entirely different social media platform. Many social media sites come with easy-to-use tracking tools, and third-party tracking is also available. Ongoing evaluation is necessary – we recommend at least once per month.