It’s easy to think of Social Media as just another Internet fad that has no connection to business. So simply by joining the likes of Facebook and Twitter you find people that you know and invite them to “follow” you or “like” you with absolutely no thought about whether you can use it for business or not.
Well I’m here to tell you that you can, and with this article I will share with you some insights and techniques on How to Develop Your Winning Social Media Plan in 7 Simple Steps.
How to Develop Your Winning Social Media Plan in 7 Simple Steps. Step 1.
1. Defining the Term.
So understanding and defining exactly what Social Media is all about is the first piece of the jigsaw. Lets examine what happens to content on the Internet: Attention is the name of the game here, after all why do you advertise on the Internet, or anywhere for that matter if it is not to gain the attention of your target audience and there are 4 ways you can do this, they are:
a). Buying attention. More commonly known as advertising.
b). Begging for attention. Public relations exercises etc.
c). Or you can get your attention with one to one selling.
d). You can earn your attention. You can do that by using Social media to promote your own unique content FREE. So create a Blog, or a Facebook page or account, post some photos, share a video you have made, publish a special report.
So the explanation contained in d) above quite clearly is saying that social media is not just simply taking part in social networking, but is actually saying that you need to earn your attention by creating original content and building you social communities around it.
How to Develop Your Winning Social Media Plan in 7 Simple Steps. Step 2.
2. Become Familiar and Understand The Essentials.
Understanding the essentials of each of the different elements is to bring this knowledge to your business which in turn will allow you to utilise each element to it’s fullest potential.
You need to familiarise yourself and gain an understanding of the following terms:
C). Social networking;
D). Photo sharing;
There are a host of other terms and applications you should also consider, but that is outside of the remit for this article as I want to keep this as simple as possible. Take a look at some of my other blog posts to find out more.
But, as you familiarise yourself with each element it’s definitely worth taking the time to consider the possible applications for each different element within the confines of your own particular and unique business.
How to Develop Your Winning Social Media Plan in 7 Simple Steps. Step 3.
3. Discover Your Social Media Niche.
The third step you should take is to begin an assessment of your strengths and weaknesses’ in relation to each of the separate Social elements. This should also give you the opportunity to establish any potential threats that may arise.
Once you have completed this exercise you should be in a position to identify which particular Social Media to focus on. This will now also allow you to begin the task of building your like minded communities of people and associates who share the same interests and participate in the same discussions as you.
How to Develop Your Winning Social Media Plan in 7 Simple Steps. Step 4.
Step 4: First Hand Experience.
You are now at the stage where you will be experiencing each different social media element and beginning to understand the role each one can play in your business. So you now need to get your hands dirty, and begin to use some of the not so well known tools available which will allow you to determine which tools are the best fit for your business. Again because this is such a broad subject, this article cannot possibly cover all of these elements, but the good news is that most of my students who undertake my training programs can learn all this at their own pace.
How to Develop Your Winning Social Media Plan in 7 Simple Steps. Step 5.
Step 5: Your Social Media Success.
For people to see you as an expert in your niche (and for you to see yourself as an expert as well) you need to complete some research. So follow the next steps in the process as follows:
1). Identify your target audience. So start to understand your audiences behaviours, their values and beliefs, and any needs they currently have.
2). Find your competition by asking yourself the following questions:
a) Who is already catering to your target market?
b) What kind, and how much interaction is taking place in their communities?
c) How good is the interaction?
d) What ideas can you take and improve upon to make your own?
How to Develop Your Winning Social Media Plan in 7 Simple Steps. Step 6.
Step 6: Take a Step Back.
This next step in the process requires you to take a step back and evaluate where you are right now with your business social activities. So you can begin at this point to organise your resources and really engage with your plans, and from there you can identify your starting point.
Having the right strategies at the very beginning is a variable, not only dependent on your own particular situation, or your own level of competence, but also on the varying skills of the people and contacts you are now beginning to associate with. So choosing the right market gains some significant importance at this stage.
How to Develop Your Winning Social Media Plan in 7 Simple Steps. Step 7.
Step 7: Beginning the Implementation Process.
The first six steps in the process are now complete, so you should now be at the stage where you can begin the 7th and final stage of the process, which is the implementation of your social media plan.
So with your planning now complete, you can start the implementation process and roll-out, and this will involve things like:
• Building your web visibility and brand with your websites and Blogs.
• Developing trust, building trust visibility and engagement using tactics such as RSS feeds, Search Engine Optimisation, Social networking.
However as these topics are all individually massive subjects themselves, they are well outside the scope of this article and are covered by other articles within this series which can be found on my blog.
So, there you have it, I have tried to keep this article as brief as possible and hope you find the tips and strategies I have covered, useful to you and your business, and as you can more than likely see, there is so much more to social media marketing than simply opening a Twitter or Facebook account, but by utilising the steps above you will soon learn How to Develop Your Winning Social Media Plan.