8 Essential Elements of a Social Media Marketing Strategy

social media how toDo you need help getting started with your social media marketing strategy?

Do you know what to include?

Goals and objectives guide your social media strategy to help you successfully connect with your customers.

In this article I’ll share what you need to include in your social media marketing strategy so it works from day one.

#1: Identify Business Goals

Every piece of your social media strategy serves the goals you set. You simply can’t move forward without knowing what you’re working toward.

Look closely at your company’s overall needs and decide how you want to use social media to contribute to reaching them.

You’ll undoubtedly come up with several personalized goals, but there are a few that all companies should include in their strategy—increasing brand awareness, retaining customers and reducing marketing costs are relevant to everyone.

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First, set your goals and objectives. Image: Shutterstock.

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Four Steps to Achieving Your Social Media Goals

social media how toAre you wondering how you’ll achieve your social media goals this year?

Do you feel as if you’re spending lots of time on social media with little direction and few results?

In this article, I’ll show you how to streamline your social media marketing to achieve your goals.

#1: Set Realistic Goals for Your Business

When you set goals for your business, set one realistic goal that’s measurable.

For example, if you own a local flower shop and you sell 20-25 flower arrangements per day, try starting off with a goal of selling 30 per day.

Adding an extra 5-10 sales a day is certainly more realistic than adding 30.

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Your strategy starts with goals. Image source: iStockPhoto.

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6 Ways to Measure Your Social Media Results

social media researchHow much time are you spending on social media? Can you tell if it’s helping sales?

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a framework for measuring the impact of your social media efforts?

That’s where Susan Etlinger’s new research for the Altimeter Group comes into play. Susan did qualitative research with 60 social media marketers and vendors to understand how businesses currently measure their social media performance.

Her goal: to develop a framework for tying social media performance to business goals.

NOTE: Because Susan’s original research targeted enterprise-level companies, I interviewed her to add some small business insights. The following comments combine results of the research and that interview.

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How to Integrate Social Media With Traditional Media

social media how toIs your social media program fully integrated with your traditional marketing program, or are you just bolting on “Follow me on Twitter/Facebook” to your ads and fooling yourself?

The Integration Question

If you’re running a truly integrated program, congrats. You’re among the elite. Like the Marines, you’re part of the few, the proud, the enlightened.

But for everyone else, the question that constantly floats around boardrooms, ballrooms and conference panels is “How do I integrate all of this new social media with my traditional advertising and public relations campaigns?” Yes, social media is growing up, and in 2010, marketers don’t just want to know how to use Twitter and Facebook, marketers want to know how to integrate Twitter and Facebook into their advertising, direct marketing and public relations campaigns.

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