Many people and businesses are having a tough time figuring out how social media fits into their business and how it will work with their current marketing campaign. For many, Social Media Marketing (SMM) seems like a catchy buzz phrase that consists of only Facebppl posts and some random tweets. To be honest, marketing on social media channels is much more than just tweeting random tweets.

SMM is not going to transform your business and turn it into an overnight success story, but it can be used as a great marketing method if you create a solid strategy behind it. To start off with, your SMM strategy should include a variety of public relations and digital marketing tactics for the individual or team that will be responsible for the campaign. It is also very important to make sure that you set realistic expectations and you have a thorough understanding of what SMM requires before you begin with your social media initiative.

Here’s a couple of guidelines you can use when creating your Social Media Marketing strategy

Social Media Guidelines

Business objectives: To make it simple, begin your strategy with the end in mind. Decide what your goals and objectives are and why you are putting your social media plan together to reach those goals and objectives. What do you want to achieve with your campaign? Are the goals and objectives you want to meet realistic? Research and dedicate some time to create this valuable milestone in your strategy.

Target audience: Know and research the people you are trying to connect with and where they are spending their time online. It is also very helpful in understanding what level of social interaction they current have. For example, if you are selling screwdrivers to seniors then posting updates on your Facebook Fan Page all day long is not going to be your best bet. Research and check what your audience dislikes and likes and get involved with them.

Engaging: SMM is a two-way conversation and that means you need to engage and get involved on the social media channels that you are targeting. Your social media campaign should include how your time will be allocated to develop your network and how you are going to communicate with them.

Customize your strategy: Once you have nailed down the little basics of your SMM campaign you must customize your plan. Make the plan your own and brand it, after all social media is really not based on tweets or Facebook status updates alone. Look at how other people are leveraging social media in their business.

Measurement: Research and check what metric you are going to use to evaluate your social media campaign. Which key metrics are the most important to you? This is very important to check if your SMM campaign will bring in the desired ROI.

Social Media Marketing can be use to build brand awareness, word of mouth marketing and brand loyalty for your business. Research and put some though into your campaign that goes beyond posting random updates on your social media profiles and you will be on a good way to enhance the relationships with your target audience.

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