Although managing social media profiles may seem to be a piece of cake in the world of digital marketing, it’s not always the sweetest.
You’ll inevitably face problems if you dive in without preparing yourself to do a great job. Social media management is not a one-shot activity; rather, it’s a process that needs to be analyzed and optimized in order to deliver the best results.
Social media management (SMM) definition
SMM includes contacting clients, getting their approval, modifying content and discussing activities, and finally publishing a particular piece of content and interacting with followers.
How can you boost your social media management?
Social media management is much more than simply creating and posting content on social media platforms. Although the above tasks may be delegated to one person, in many cases those tasks are redistributed to many members of a team.
The following eleven areas have been identified as crucial for strategic managing social media accounts.
There are many marketers who do not have a documented social media strategy or plans to create one. This means that all their activities are nothing but ad-hoc, and they do not base on any analysis or target groups’ preferences. This leads to many problems, like ineffective communication, burning money on campaigns, and leaky social media management
Not having time to make a proper social media strategy is inexcusable. Identify your target groups, check out how your competitors behave on social media, and set your tone of voice. You may think it has nothing to do with social media management, but these elements actually keep you on track for success.
You may be over the moon about the growth of your team and start hiring people like crazy. But each person comes with their individual skills, expectations, and different types of work backgrounds, habits, and points of view. Long story short, this means they need to get used to working with you, your projects, and clients.
There’s a completely different story how to prepare a smooth onboarding process. In terms of social media, any new addition to your team needs to know the strategy and tone of voice of communication for your clients. They have to be aware of possible bottlenecks and remember the essential elements of messages.
TIP: Read our onboarding checklist to help prepare yourself to build a social media team that can help amplify your strategy
3. Internal and external communication
Without proper onboarding, you and your employees may struggle with effective communication. New members of any team may not cope with the dynamics of your projects or may not understand your clients’ needs fully. Without knowing a tone of voice, brand book, terms and conditions of each client, your new employee may miscommunicate with you, your clients, and their coworkers.
To ensure clarity across the board, get them to know your clients personally. This kind of interaction may help with efficient collaboration.
Having clients and new employees meet allows each party to know the new person responsible for social communication. If your employee knows your client on a personal level, this can help them to recognize preferences, needs, requirements, and expectations.
You need a clear workflow from day one. Everyone needs to know who the go-to people are in terms of creating content, approving it, preparing graphics, and being in charge of community management.
Why is it so important? Well, even if you think your strategy is going smoothly, situations can become hectic and tangled with miscommunication, which leads to disorganization and dissatisfaction across the board.
Knowing who manages which activities needs to be top of mind. Everyone should know who creates briefs, who prepares graphics, who sends them for approval, and who actually gives approval on the client’s side, as well as who pushes content to publication.
For some people, deadlines are scary. However, you need to introduce them to your workflow to keep some discipline.
5. Anti-crisis procedures
Do you know what to do if a crisis occurs at 10 p.m. on a Saturday? If not, then it’s time to prepare a set of procedures for crisis prevention.
Even the most top-notch social media management processes can be affected without a crisis prevention plan in place. You cannot fully protect from a crisis, but you can figure out what to do when something unexpected occurs.
Create templates with answers to customer questions as a preventative measure. This is essential in sensitive industries when the crisis can visibly affect business, sales, recognition, and prestige.
6. Getting to know your audience
You may be tempted to come up with ideas for social media posts during the marketing meetings or brainstorming sessions. Although they may be a good way to enhance the creative process, it is the audience you should always keep in mind. What would be interesting to them? In what type of content they will likely engage with?
People interact with content that resonates with them and it’s never a good idea to make a blind guess. Get to know your audience instead.
Create personas, perform your audiences' analysis across different channels, segment the audience in order to share tailored content based on specific interests, and so on. Making an effort to know the audience will always pay you back.
7. Completing a competitor analysis
Whether you run your social media profiles in a niche or in a highly competitive environment, you should always perform a competitor analysis. It gives an idea about the industry the audience is a part of or is interested in.
Start with compiling a list of frequently asked questions about similar products and services, check how your competitors react to them, analyze their tone of voice and how interactive they are. Take a closer look at the types of content they share (articles? videos? infographics? funny GIFs?), when they gain followers and when they lose them. Finally, extract insights from the competitor analysis and prepare your competitive advantage.
If something can save a lot of time and effort and boost the productivity of your social media team, purchase it. For social media managers, the most valuable tools are those supporting their everyday work: tools for scheduling, tools for reporting, tools for communication and tools for analytics. Social media monitoring tools like these can help amplify your strategy. You can soon discover that you did not spend money on apps: you invested in your team and saved money you would have to spend on another recruitee.
9. A golden mean between automation and personalization
Social media automation gives a lot of opportunities and you may get a bit lost into it.
While tools can do a lot of work for you and instead of you, you should not forget about the reason why you started using them in the first place: to make tasks easier so you could focus on a business core. If you automate your social media management tasks, you should spend the time you saved on community management and optimizing your performance. Tools can help you loads, but will never replace the right human interaction and message personalization.
10. Performance optimization
You might think your social media is flawless, but is it? Don’t become complacent and forget to check it out on a regular basis. Always start with setting measurable marketing goals. Experiment with time slots and time zones. Don’t stick to recommended timing; rather, keep analyzing what works for your audience.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re a new startup, a small local business, an NGO, or a big corporation: performance optimization is crucial in every type of organization. A one-size-fits-all strategy doesn’t exist. What works wonders with one profile or platform isn't necessarily as successful with others.
11. Networking and connecting
Often, social media managers focus on the message over engaging with their audience. It seems difficult but doesn’t have to be. After checking out your data analytics, find your customer's pain points and what they're looking for.
It’s also good to know the types of content that in most cases can increase engagement. According to research, 18% of all social shares are driven by how-to articles. Especially in B2B marketing, the audience appreciates tutorials, step-by-step guides, and infographics. Inspire your audience with positive and real messages.
The social media management puzzle
As you can see, social media management consists of many moving pieces. It goes far beyond posting more or less ad-hoc content but requires a strategy for the good and the bad; in-depth competitor and audience analysis; crafting engaging content and choosing the right social media management software. It’s up to you, your team, and your strategy to make sure these movements are smooth and well integrated.