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Four steps to an effective social media strategy that delivers ROI

Working in the social media team at HROC means we are constantly engaging and monitoring all of the social media platforms for each of our national and international clients.

We watch brands, monitor trends and insights and use these as learnings to adapt and develop strategies for our clients which help meet business objectives.

What we also see though is companies not understanding the basics of social media and trying to ‘sell’ to their audiences in every singabstract-1233873__480-1le post, rather than using the opportunity to understand and engage with them.

The best social media strategy is all about remembering to keep it simple – creating the right style of content, with your business goals in mind and really focusing on your target audience to engage with. The time you invest in social media will need to be measured by the performance of how your posts are being received by its audience to guarantee your strategy is working for your brand.

If you want to make the most of your social media presence, follow these four methods to reach more people and increase engagement to ensure you build a digital brand.


STEP 1: Goal, goals, goals!

The first step in creating your social media strategy is to consider your brand and business objectives – what are you trying to achieve? Once you have a business strategy, only then can you decide which social networks will bring your brand the most value. As well as giving your content direction, your goals will also help to determine whether your social actions are meeting expectations by measuring the rate of success.

When building a strategy always keep in mind your brand’s end goal. Whether it is to increase brand awareness or drive traffic to your website so you can secure more sales, you need to develop an active community and establish deeper relationships with the audience.


STEP 2: An on brand make over
Once you have defined your goals, it’s time to ensure your brand’s online presence reflects its unique brand identity. Your social pages are windows to your business so make it a good window to look through.

Small changes to the overall look of your page such as filling out the Facebook page entirely, refreshing imagery and updating website links, will allow your audience to understand your brand and strengthen its character. Authenticating pages with a blue tick (granted by the social media platform) will allow your page and posts to show up higher in search results to help attract more visitors, build credibility and give it a professional look.


STEP 3: Content is king so make it count!

Before collating ideas and drafting posts, you should set up an editorial calendar, which helps you to plan, organise and manage the production process. The main advantage of having a content plan in place will allow you to keep a track on what social platforms you will be posting on, the frequency and times of the posts (these will be unique to your audience – test and find out) and the type of updates.

Plan your content around embracing your brand, including product launches, general updates, audience interests, reacting to national news, awareness days and mentioning other brands within your industry. You also need to be timely – it is all about the right reaction at the right time – the time you respond to your audience and the times that you post all need to be part of your strategy.

To then help meet our business goals, develop your ideas, include images, posts blog to drive traffic to your website, create videos, use infographics and provide quick tips, all while writing in a tone and style that fits with your company brand.


STEP 4: Time to tune in and measure without a ruler

Have you heard of social listening? This is the most important part of social media and you should be doing this to monitor how your audience is reacting to your content. Otherwise, how do you learn what your audience likes.

Your pages require updating and reviewing regularly, so establish a technique to converse with your audience, try to respond in real time and keep giving them positive reasons to revisit, and maybe their online friends will do too. Staying on top of engagement levels will allow you to understand what your audience likes and which content didn’t even reach them. Creating organic content, which really delivers business objectives means knowing what makes your audience tick. So, it is essential to look, listen and learn.

Producing monthly reports summarising impressions, likes, shares, clicks and website traffic, for example, allows us to spot trends and patterns in data. Your main aim for creating content is to encourage your audience to visit, read, engage and then take action. So if this purpose has not been fulfilled, remember to use this information to revise your social strategy and help improve future results.

To find out how the HROC team can help build your brand’s killer social media strategy, give us a call on 0121 454 9707 or drop us an email at gary.hebblethwaite@hroc.co.uk