A new year, a fresh start. That’s the theory anyway. Why not make it real too – at least when it comes to social networking.
This is the ideal time of year to press “reset” on your social strategy. You can take a few moments to make sure you’re getting the best out of the time and money you invest in social marketing.
Even if you’re doing really well with social (great job if you are!), it’s still worth doing a raincheck. The landscape of social media is constantly changing, and there’s no right way of doing social. So it’s always good to make sure you’re on the right path.
Here’s how to make sure 2015 is the year you rock it on social media…
Find Out What’s Been Working Well
You’ve heard the phrase “don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater”. That applies here. Just because you’re rethinking your social strategy doesn’t mean you have to start from scratch.
Look over what’s gone well for you on social media in the past year. For example, you might notice that you’ve:
- Interacted with an influencer (or influencers) in your niche
- Received lots of comments from your fans or followers
- Had a good amount of clicks on the content you’ve shared
- Performed particularly well on one or two social networks.
You can get some of this information by looking over your social interactions. But you’ll get better information (and be able to see if you’re improving) if you track your metrics. We’ll come to that in a moment.
For now, notice what’s working, and commit to doing more of it.
Throw Out What’s Not Working
Spring cleaning is when you tidy up your house, and it often includes throwing out broken stuff.
The concept of spring cleaning actually comes from the Persian New Year, which falls on the first day of spring. On New Year’s Eve, people in Persia clean everything in their home, as a way of having a fresh start.
So far, you’ve looked at what’s working on social media. Now, it’s time to consider what’s not going so well. This can be tough – because it could mean it’s time to trash projects you’ve spent a lot of time on, or that mean a great deal to you.
When you’re considering what’s not going so well, you might look at:
- Types of content that doesn’t get shared or commented on
- Networks where you don’t get much interaction
- Influencer’s you’ve been targeting who continually ignore you
And so on…
Of course, it could be that you can’t see what’s worked (or failed) on social media, because you’ve been doing very little social networking. If that’s that case, then throw out your laziness, and get to work at making a social splash!
Replace the Broken With Sparkling New Things
You’ve seen what’s working in your social strategy, and you’ve thrown out what’s not.
What’s next? By getting rid of what’s not working, you’ve freed up time to try out some new things.
Remember, social media is an experiment. Not everything you try out will work. But some of it will. So, try out what you’re drawn to, and see how it goes.
Here are some ideas for what you could do.
Find “Influencers” to Connect With
You’ve probably heard that it’s good to connect with “influencers”. Typically, these are people with lots of followers. More followers, more influence, right?
This is only true to an extent. A better way of looking at influencers is to think of the people who can help you because of their position, and the influence they have. For example:
- If you’re a start up company, then “influencers” could be potential investors
- If you’re a freelance writer, then “influencers” are the editors who could commission an article from you.
- If you’re an ecommerce store, then an “influencer” could be a potential supplier you want to get in touch with.
Try Out a New Network
Which networks should you be using? That all depends on what you’re trying to achieve. For most businesses, we’d recommend you use Twitter and Facebook at minimum, but even those aren’t for everyone.
The right networks for you are the places you can best connect with your customers. For B2B businesses, this is likely to be LinkedIn. If you sell a highly niched product, then you might find the best place to connect with your customers is in an old-school forum. Selling interior design or craft products? Then you can’t ignore Pinterest.
So, take some time to investigate the niche networks that could be a good fit for your business. Then go join them!
Make Sure You’ve got the Basics Covered
The bread-and-butter of social media can seem boring, which is why we’ve saved it until last. But if you’ve not getting the basics right, then there’s little point in growing what you’re doing.
Two simple mistakes we often see are:
- Not scheduling updates. Scheduling updates using a simple tool such as Buffer App will save you a ton of time if you’re not doing it already. It also has an added advantage: scheduling updates means you’ll be following the most basic role of social media – frequent updates.
- Failing to track your metrics. Keeping on top of your stats is the only way you can discover what’s really working on social media. It also helps you see how you can improve. Tracking stats doesn’t have to be difficult – there are a ton of different apps that will do it for you.
Over to You
What are your New Year’s Resolutions when it comes to social media? What changes are you planning to make to your social strategy in 2015?