Developing A Content Strategy Across Social Media Networks

    n the earliest days of Internet marketing, companies didn’t need to worry about putting content anywhere except on their own web site. Back in those days, Facebook was a distant dream in the mind of a kid at Harvard and a tweet was just a sound made by a bird.

    The Rapid Rise Of Social Networks

    The meteoric rise of social media over the past five years has changed the way that companies approach their marketing. The statistics speak for themselves: in 2010, Facebook had 400 million users. Just two years later, the site reached more than 1 billion users. In the same period of time, the number of Twitter users doubled from 100 million to 200 million. Because of their huge number of users, these major social networks represent a prime channel for companies to attract new business and satisfy existing clients.

    Besides a company web site, social media networks are some of the most common platforms for marketers to use when executing their content strategy. But with new social networks emerging on what seems like a daily basis and company resources under more strain than ever before, how can a marketer maintain a sufficient flow of content to each network? With some effort and planning, it is very possible to use multiple social networks simultaneously to improve the effectiveness of your company’s content strategy.

    Narrow Your Focus

    One of the first things you should understand about social media networks as they pertain to your client's content strategy is that it is impossible to cover all of them. You will want to decide early on which networks you should concentrate your energy on. Many companies choose Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, as these three social networks are the most popular. The sites that you choose for your content marketing campaign should fit in with your goals as well as your customer demographic. For example, if you are targeting products or service towards women, Pinterest is probably a site that you want to be involved with: RJMetrics reported earlier this year that 80% of Pinterest users are women.

    Consider Your Timing

    What time will your prospects be active on the specific social media network that you are targeting with your content strategy? HubSpot says that Facebook posts are shared most on the weekends, while retweets on Twitter are highest later in the day and week. On the other hand, a network like LinkedIn that is aimed more at business professionals may be better to post on during the workday. Experiment with different timings for your social media posts and you will eventually find the ones that work the best.

    Use Hashtags

    For a busy marketer responsible for content strategy across multiple platforms, hashtags can be an important metric that binds it all together. Many of the major social media networks including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, and Pinterest support hashtags. What exactly is the function of a hashtag? It allows you to see messages from people that use a certain hashtag in their posts. With hashtags you can see exactly what people are saying about your client's company, event, or products. Try to encourage fans and followers to use your hashtags in their posts, which will increase your social media visibility in a way that you can track.

    Don’t Forget About Customer Service

    No matter what kind of social network you are using, your goal should be to satisfy your client's customers. There are countless examples of businesses using Twitter to provide excellent customer service. Have you heard the story about Morton’s Steakhouse delivering a steak to a hungry follower who didn’t have time to eat between flights? These are just a few examples of what is possible from a customer service standpoint. While Twitter might be the best social network for immediate customer service, you can address customer issues on almost any social network that you use.

    These tips should get you well on your way to establishing a successful content strategy across several social media networks. Above all, make sure that you experiment and constantly tinker with your strategy to find out what works and what doesn’t when it comes to improving your client's company’s standing in the all-important world of social media networks.

    Topics: content marketing - content strategy - content marketing strategy - social media marketing - social content

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