When you look at most social media wisdom, it essentially boils down to a handful of main points:
- Write good content.
- Write interesting headlines.
- Use compelling photos to enhance shareability.
- Post frequently.
These are good recommendations, but newspapers and magazines have been using these same tactics for decades - and now they’re declining rapidly. So that’s not all of the answer.
If you’re selling hearing aids to people over 50, there’s no point growing your followers in the 20-30 age range… unless your new marketing campaign is aimed at their adult children.
There are two basic options for follower campaigns. You can aim for organic growth, where existing followers engage with or share your content so that their followers see and potentially choose to follow you. Or you can aim for paid growth, where you reach out to new audiences through targeted advertising and encourage them to follow you. Organic works best when your followers are solidly in your target market; if your followers are more diverse, you might need a strategy that relies heavily on paid advertising instead.
Research your target audience and pick out key characteristics that set them apart from other people. Turn these characteristics into a sketch of a persona with a name and personality that you can use to build a better connection.
More detailed playbooks about creating buyer personas
List the platforms you currently use, see how they match with the platforms that your target audience prefers, and analyze where you can achieve the best results.
More playbooks about choosing social media channels
Optimize your social media profiles and content. Gain verification for your brand page, fill out your profile, and audit your content.
Check that your profile and posts adhere to your branding guidelines, use hashtags, and optimize your profile text for search engines.
Playbooks about growing your audience organically on specific social media platforms
Brainstorm ideas for your social media content with your team and use research to find out what your target audience cares about.
Follow trending topics in the news and on social media, gather common questions and topics of conversation from internal teams, audit competitor and industry sites, and use search tools to find new ideas.
More Playbooks about finding ideas for new content
Put together a content calendar that references your broader digital marketing strategy, including podcasts, blogs, and email.
Choose a calendar platform, pick a posting frequency, identify supporting tasks for each piece of content, assign responsibilities, and track the performance of each piece of content.
Be aware that scheduling can greatly affect the performance of your content. Put some resources into tracking the consumption behavior of followers in your target audience, so that you can identify the best times to post.
Consider automating your social media posting and marketing with a tool like CoSchedule, so that you have more time for making genuine personal conversation.
Share proprietary research, write case studies, and encourage customers to create their own content.
More Playbooks about creating content for social media
Use Canva to create branded content
Produce thought leadership content
Hire content writers
Create content briefs
Create content for your product
Create an infographic
Livestream on LinkedIn
Create evergreen content for Facebook
Create non-evergreen content
Co-create content for influencer marketing
Repurpose virtual summit content
Create charts for your content
Source user-generated content
Set up a social media listening tool. Actively respond to comments on your posts and mentions of your brand.
Encourage responses from existing followers, and draw them into conversations that can pull in more people.
Use advertising to promote social media posts that are most likely to appeal to your target audience.
Analyze the content that got the highest engagement, create an ad campaign, use your learnings to put together the creative, and include the benefits of following your brand. Run A/B tests for different ad types.