Social media strategy for SMEs

This has been a really busy month and continues to be so. During the third week of June, viagra 60mghad a new opportunity to share my thoughts on social media strategy and management with a very inspiring group of businesses and organizations from Lincoln, physician UK as part of the expert talk series hosted by the Lincolnshire Leadership & Management Centre (LLMC)

4 things to remember:

  • Your strategy should start with your business opportunity and business goals (NOT with the channels).
  • Never forget where your business operates (if it is not an online based business, valeologist it is a MUST that you include at least one digital reference in your store/window/business cards; this can be your website or twitter account. Integration is important here so do not forget to link your accounts online).
  • Social media needs a strategy too (one that is aligned with your business strategy but that is adapted to the rules, requirements and etiquette of each medium). That means everything from goals, to objectives, target audience and measurement. If you are going to measure it, might as well do something else. (Speaking of measurement, Katie Paine has loads of good advice on her blog).
  • It is a very busy place out there so, for SMEs in particular, social media needs to be addressed from a resources, risks, uses and gratifications perspective (what are you comfortable with, what resources – time, money, knowledge, people you have – what’s in in for your audience – as in what value do you provide but also what’s in it for you – this is the question about success). If you thought Fred Cavazza’s visualization of the social media landscape is overwhelming, check out the Mary Meeker’s trends summary on TechCrunch and Getty Image’s Stories and Trends.

The daily routine: Listen, Create, Share & Integrate

I have roughly recommended a 2 hours/day spend on social media where part of it would be spent monitoring, benchmarking and aggregating content and another part would be dedicated to creating your own content.

Benchmarking is important.

Strategy is not always about making something new. It can also be about improvement. Luckily, the good side of big data is that there is an increasing number of free and premium tools out there that diagnose social media activity. Likealyzer, Website Grader, TweetReach, Klout, Simply Measured, Locowise are just some of them.

Monitoring is essential: it provides inspiration, helps identify trends and spot potential problems.

With social media being generally a peer to peer environment, it is highly important that you listen to the chatter. With tools like SocialMention, Twazzup, Hashatit, Engagor and Mention, you can monitor keywords of your choice (this can include the names of your competitors). You can equally monitor what is being said about your business using tools like Google Alerts; most social media platforms have their own notification options for when your account is mentioned and advanced search options which you should use.

Creating content has rules. 

Developing a content plan gives you structure and keeps you focused. If you use any tools like Bufferapp or Hootsuite that enable multiple users to manage one social media account, the plan can also ensure that work is not duplicated but also that tasks can be assigned.

Creating content that sticks is an entire science. It needs to be authentic, but strike an emotional chord. It needs to be noticeable but not always about you or your business:

Integration is for consistency, authenticity and visibility.

It also helps measurement.

For more of my thoughts and advice on the same topic, check out my previous posts on social media strategy and check out some of the notes of DCS, an undergraduate course I used to teach at Bournemouth University. The slides are embedded below.

What are your lessons learned?

Please do get in touch and share your stories and progress.

 

Thank you for the feedback received live on Twitter!

Also, a big thank you Ning Chris Chen for the photo.

Post to Twitter Post to Delicious Post to Facebook Send Gmail Post to LinkedIn Post to StumbleUpon Post to Technorati

Leave a Reply