Social media planning, social media strategy, social media marketing, social media management. It doesn’t matter what you call it, it all really just means putting content out there to draw visitors to your website. But it takes time doesn’t it?
Social media doesn’t need to take over your working day, but it does need a regular, scheduled a spot in your diary. The key question for many tasked with the job of controlling a company’s social media is “how much time should you spend on social media?”
The answer will vary according to the size and budget of your company, but it should at least follow a weekly routine.
What do I want from Social Media?
Before considering the time it takes to come up with and action a social media strategy make sure you have first looked into what social media you are going to use and how you are going to use it.
Ask yourself some key questions:
- Are you wanting more sales?
- Do you require some loyalty?
- Are you building awareness of your brand or product?
Understanding what your objective (strategy) is from social media, will help you assess and monitor whether what you actually do is working or not.
For instance, if you want more sales then you will be checking click rates, conversions and sales numbers. Your content and delivery should focus on increasing these numbers (your success metrics).
The Circle of (Social Media) Life
Every strategy, no matter how simple or complex will contain these three stages and it will go round and round like a wheel:
- Plan content
- Implement content
- Measure content
Which can be translated into:
- This is what we want to do
- This is how we are going to do it
- This is what happened.
Hopefully, learning what worked and what didn’t and amending the strategy/content/delivery in the planning stage and then repeating the next week.
how much time should you spend on social media?
Let’s return to the original question. While every business is different, and there is an enormous difference between the budgets of Hewlett Packard and that of Packard Family Movers, the social media strategy framework will remain the same.
There is no rule of thumb for everyone, yet everyone has to start thumbing a tweet at some time. To start with, it’s often best to consider your strategy on a week-to-week basis. This is a simple guide based on hourly blocks for the first few weeks:
Social Media Weekly Planner
MONDAY - Planning 1 hour | Implementing 1 hour
TUESDAY - Implementing 1 hour
WEDNESDAY - Implementing 1 hour
THURSDAY - Implementing 1 hour
FRIDAY - Implementing 1 hour | Measuring 1 hour
Here’s how the ‘circle of social media strategy’ helps in this process
- Plan - Take time to return to your strategy plan to make sure you are on the right track and concentrating on the right areas.
- Implement - Create content, schedule it out, post it to social media and get stuck in with engaging with your community.
- Measure - Check your results, take a look at any metrics you have (follower numbers, shares,mikes, comments) and assess how well the content was planned and executed. Have certain areas been highlighted for further exploration, did it work? Sensible analysis of your results will help in the planning for the next week.
So, how much time are you going to spend on your social media strategy? It must always be a manageable amount, you will have a ton of other work to complete as well. But it’s not something you can afford to pay lip service to either. Or else what’s the point?
Breaking down the parts of social media into three areas is easier than looking at it as a whole. Having a weekly plan in place can help you:
- Think of what you want to share and where
- Produce the content
- Look at the results
Do this every week and you will see the results of your social media begin to pay off. It can be manageable, without taking over your entire week and you might find that its success encourages you to do more!