Look before you leap!

We still come across companies that have jumped into social media without a clear plan. Most times they’ve registered a few social profiles and then hit what I like to call…’the Great Silence.’ So where do you start? I always work through this checklist when I first sit down with clients.

It’s important to establish that social media is not a ‘quick-fix’ strategy, it’s a fundamental shift in the way that companies and organisations now relate to their audiences.

What are the Social Media outcomes you expect?
It’s now universally accepted that Social Media can…

  • aid in Branding & build awareness
  • build community around brands & organisations
  • extend customer service
  • drive leads & sales
  • enhance/protect reputation
  • lead to opportunities like product development

What do you want it to do for your brand?

Brand Positioning

  • Is there a clearly defined brand strategy ?
  • How will we integrate social media with other brand/marketing stratgies ?

Start with gaining audience intelligence….

  • how much do you know about your audience ?
  • what can your current data tell you?
  • where does your audience congregate?
  • what are conversations already happening around your brand?
  • who are the influencers?
  • what are your competitors doing?

You’ll be amazed at the social insights you’ll glean when you take the time to listen to the conversation.

Think strategy before tools….

  • search strategy
  • content strategy
  • social strategy
  • how do you plan to integrate social with other activities?
  • who are the key stakeholders that need to be involved?

While you’re finding out about your audience…

  • develop your Social Media Policy
  • conduct a social media audit
  • assess your social media capacity/resources
  • establish staff guidelines, training & support
  • set Community Management guidelines
  • agree on a process to manage the function

Review your website:

  • optimise your landing pages for SEO & social sharing
  • QA your website ‘infrastructure’
  • review your website ‘community functionality’

Engage your audience:

  • embrace consumer empowerment
  • set social media objectives
  • review objectives & kpi’s
  • build relationships not campaigns
  • leverage employee participation

Establish a Brand Maintenance Program

  • monitor conversations
  • identify influencers, manage critics
  • identify trends
  • track metrics against agreed to KPI’s
  • how will you measure success ?

If you want to add anything to this checklist we’d love to hear from you...