How to Craft a Social Media Strategy Plan
Most marketers and business owners don’t know how to craft a social media strategy, or they’re stuck in the rut of just posting the same thing over and over again.
This is why I’ve decided to dive into exactly what it takes to craft a social media strategy plan that actually leads to results. I’m going to teach you everything that you need to know about crafting a successful social media strategy for your business or movement. You’ll learn how to use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and more, effectively so that you can build your community, engagement, and, you know, actual sales.
I’ll walk through everything step-by-step so that you will see real things that you can begin implementing, today! Even if you don’t know where to start or if it’s been a while since you’ve logged into any of your accounts.
Plus my friend Selena Soo shares a bit about how she combines social media with mainstream media and paid publicity to really stand out.
Step #1: Business Foundations
The first thing you need to craft a social media strategy, is to have your business foundations in place. “Business foundations” is a phrase that just rolls off people’s backs instead of something people actually focus on, and you really need to put the time in to have them in order. Here is what you need to have, and we can go more in depth at another time:
- Ideal Client – You have to know who the actual human being is. You should try to find three humans you can connect with as you are putting this together.
- Unique Value Proposition (UVP) – What makes you different than the other people in your space?
- Branding Binder – This doesn’t have to be fancy. But we have a PDF with our language, color hex codes (the codes that denote your exact colors), fonts, graphics, etc.
Step #2: Identify Big Rocks
Stephen Covey came up with this idea: If you have a jar, and you put a bunch of little rocks in there, and then you try to put some big rocks in afterward, they won’t fit. But if you put the big rocks in first, and then you let the little rocks sift through, you will be able to put way more into the jar.
You can do this at any time. You can do it monthly, or weekly (as we do), or you can do this months out. When it comes to the big rocks, these are things that you should schedule in your calendar first. I start out with family, holidays, and promos. Then I look to partners and publicity options. To figure out publicity options, I turn to my wonderful friend, Selena Soo!
Selena got started when she was in her mid-20s during her quarter-life crisis. She was clinically depressed and was not feeling really good about herself. It was to the point that her mother flew out to New York to be by her side. This was when she was introduced to a female life coach, who introduced her to the world of inspirational authors and entrepreneurs. People need more inspiration when they are struggling, not just more information. A lot of people in Selena’s network had no idea who these people were who had changed Selena’s life. This inspired Selena to want to help people become more well-known. She joined mailing lists of authors and entrepreneurs she admired and began connecting them with their permission to other entrepreneurs and media professionals. The media began endorsing her website, which is how her publicity work began.
Publicity is all about putting your work out on third party platforms. It’s not just sending emails or posting to your social media audience because that is all coming from you. It’s all about your message being distributed by others. This could be print media or TV, or it could be new media, like being on people’s podcasts or IGTV shows. Having other people promote your work helps build your reputation and credibility because you are no longer the only one talking about the great work that you do. Thanks to Selena, I’ve been featured in Forbes and Inc. and Entrepreneur and spoken on several podcasts and big stages, which really helped elevate my own personal credibility.
People often have something so special to share but are constantly overlooked, which breaks Selena’s heart. First impressions matter. Seeing important logos or URLs on your website of places you’ve been featured really helps others take you seriously as soon as they gain familiarity with who you are. If someone sees you everywhere they go, that will help them want to find out more about you and what you do.
To learn more about major publicity opportunities as part of the “big rocks,” Selena has built this incredible publicity calendar that you can get for free. It’s over 40 pages full of story ideas and special dates to help you get into the media. One thing the media is looking for is timely story ideas that connect back to events or holidays that are happening in the moment.
You Have Something to Share
For people who are afraid of showing up and pursuing these bigger opportunities, just know that you have something to share. If you have a business with a passion and personal story that brought you to this point, you definitely have knowledge to share with the world. You are coming from a place of service, which is so key to keep at the forefront. Selena was fearful of making mistakes, until she remembered that her mission is trying to help people through the power of connection.
The things that seem so terrifying, can become second nature and won’t be so terrifying, if you just take one courageous step at a time. For Selena, she was afraid of unscripted video because she feared the lack of control. Now, she just can talk on video without thinking about it as much. Being a prepared performer is also about taking those small steps that layer on top of each other until you gain the confidence you need. It’s all about working your way up.
Once a year, Selena releases her Impacting Millions Publicity Video Series. The series is three short videos to help you start getting publicity right now, in quick, actionable steps. With each video, you get a free gift. The free gift in the first video is the list of over 200 media outlets to help spark some ideas about where you would want to get featured. The publicity calendar is one of the gifts as well. The third video comes with a seven-step publicity action plan and how to leverage the media so that these opportunities grow your business. When you sign up for the videos, you will have a chance to win an all-expenses-paid trip to Puerto Rico.
Publicity isn't about publicity
It sounds weird but when you are pursuing publicity, it’s not just about the publicity. The decision to get publicity is you stepping into a leadership role, showing up as a bigger way in the world. It’s all about finding the courage and confidence to put yourself out there fully so more people can find you.
With our own content calendar, we have one tab with all of our big rocks. We have other tabs for our other social media posting schedules. The big rocks come through on all of them so we can always see what’s coming up to help us create our regular schedule. So our Big Rocks tab has whatever we’re promoting, any upcoming events that we are planning, and when we are out of office (OOO).
We also have a tab for Value Videos, which lists all of the videos that we do in a month. It is set up so that the Big Rocks tab information is pulled into this tab as well. It also sets up a repurposing system so that each video is turned into other pieces of content.
Step #3: Pick Your Main Platform
Yes, one singular platform! Pick one platform that you know your ideal client is on and you actually enjoy spending time on. Mine is Facebook. You will decide your secondary platforms later. For us, it’s Facebook business page -> Facebook group -> Instagram -> YouTube -> LinkedIn. In the peripheral is TikTok and sometimes Twitter. There is a hierarchy, so you don’t feel like you have to give the same amount of energy and weight to every platform, which allows you to be more strategic. Once your main platform is identified, you can create a skip/hop/jump to your other platforms.
Step #4: Decide on a Consistent Pillar Post
In our content plan, we call this an action post, but I’m calling it a pillar post because I think it’s a great descriptor of what it actually is. It’s one bigger, action-oriented post that you can divide up into smaller pieces of content. This weekly live video would be considered a pillar post for us. It could be a blog post or a pre-recorded video as well. This type of post should be done weekly, or at minimum, at least once a month.
Step #5: Set Your Content Categories
These content categories are things you want to have going out on a consistent basis. For us, we have a framework called the Shape Framework. This includes everything that your ideal clients need to know in order to buy from you. It also includes everything that the platform wants in order to drive more traffic. You then set these categories.
Step #6: Create Your Repurposing Plan
You fit the content you are repurposing from this video or blog post into these content categories. What is really cool is that when you move things from categories into your repurposing plan, you can use scheduling tools and editing tools to chop them up into videos, audiograms, and other types of content, using our Map to Millions as a guide if you like. Repurpose.io is a great tool for this as well.
Step #7: Your Social Media Strategy Content Creation Tools
Our two favorite tools for scheduling content are SmarterQueue and Hellowoofy. (We have a WHOLE post about Hellowofey!) Both tools have the ability to load your content into your platforms and repurpose your content as well.
Remember, this is a layered parfait. When I first started, I did not do every single step. I built these steps on top of each other as I felt ready to do so. And it is something we are continuing to evolve as we develop more systems and additional bandwidth.
Another tool I want to highlight that we use to help create videos is InVideo. It’s super simple and easy to use. We’ve created great templates that make using InVideo so easy. We use BeLive to host our stream for our weekly live video, which has an incredible set of tools within it like being able to segment a video into multiple videos and posting links directly into Facebook comments through bringing an image into the stream. And Canva is a great tool to create fun graphics that fit your brand.
What happens for most people is they put out content that doesn’t get seen most of the time. We are consistently bringing our content back, driving you back to it. It’s not about creating more content; it’s about creating more conversations that lead to conversions.
Publicity isn’t as scary as it seems when you identify the big rocks! Now that you know how to craft a social media strategy plan, you have the tools you need to get started taking those steps!
- Selena’s Facebook group
- BeLive (sponsor)
- Use code MOLLY for 30% off!
- Selena’s Publicity Calendar
- Impacting Millions Publicity Video Series
- Use code MOLLY50 for a $5 a month deal!
- Check out our templates here!