We had such a great time with Stevie Dillon, social media strategist and founder of Stevie Says Social, in our last Masterclass Online of the year. Who knew we’d be okay with getting homework??
If you missed our How to create a winning social media strategy masterclass, or if you feel like you’ve tried everything to make your social content work and it’s still not working, read on for Stevie’s brilliant advice.
1. Create a killer BRAND to set yourself apart
Seems simple, yet this first step is usually skipped by the majority of people looking to implement a social media strategy. Social media platforms are meant to amplify your brand, so if your brand isn’t well thought out, placing content on social media could be confusing to your potential followers. Stevie says there are three things you need to think about when creating your brand:
Differentiation: How is your brand different from your competitors?
Perception: How do you want people to perceive your brand?
Brand Personality: What personality do you want your brand to have?
You know how we mentioned homework? Well here’s some from Stevie herself AND guess what?! There will be more homework throughout so you too can strategically work on your socials.
Homework: Write down your brand personality in 5 words. After you get those five words down, visualize five images and colours that reflect your words. Write all of this down and then find nine inspiration images (Stevie recommends starting your search via the hipster stock photo site Unsplash) to create a social mood board. This board will then guide all of your social content moving forward.
Do not underestimate the importance of your brand— it could be the difference between success and failure. – Stevie Dillon
2. Generate on-brand SOCIAL MEDIA CONTENT
This is where most people start, AND most people stop. When creating social media content, Stevie recommends using the customer journey – the path someone takes from never hearing about you to actually doing business with you – as a starting point. Oddly enough, social media is actually about being social (hints in the name). People go to social platforms to interact with friends/family but also for aspirational content. Use social media as a conversation starter and value exchange for your followers– they just might be more apt to give you a like or comment if they find value in your content.
GOLDEN RULE: Don’t be sales-y on social media (that doesn’t mean don’t sell)
Homework: Create 3 posts that really add value to your followers/social media platforms and see how it affects the engagement you get on your social accounts.
For service-based companies: Provide answers to people’s questions (via text post or short video vignettes— remember under 1 minute for Instagram!)
For product-based companies: Sell the lifestyle associated with your product through inspirational imagery
For brick and mortar stores: Ask yourself “what are the 3 biggest compliments you’ve received on your shop?”— blast those on social through text posts, interview videos, etc.
3. Design your social media marketing system (aka SELLING SYSTEM)
THIS is a game-changer. If you get this right, the social media landscape will be a piece of cake. Social media is a low converting marketing channel, and as much people like to dismiss email campaigns, they still convert 16 times better than social media. So, get those fans, followers, users off social media and pull them into a platform you can sell from— like email. The main point here is to have a sales funnel that leads people off social media to a platform you can sell to them.
Homework: Read on to part 4
4. Drive TRAFFIC to your social platforms
“If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?”
What’s the point of posting content if no one sees it? This final element really ties everything together. If you continuously ask yourself “why is no one interacting with my content?” or “why am I not getting any traction?” This one’s for you.
Social media needs a steady stream of new people continuing to find out about you. Stevie suggests going out to where people are hanging out on social, provide them with value and draw them back to your channels. This can be done anywhere from Facebook groups to Facebook/Instagram ads. You have options in how you go about traffic. A lot of people will tell you what Stevie likes to call the “slow way” or recommend you use geotags, hashtags and proactively engage with other accounts to drive traffic to your platforms. This is all good and highly recommended, but because of Facebook’s algorithm restrictions, you’re going to struggle with getting the traction you want.
However, Stevie recommends the supercharged way— this includes Facebook ads, adding value within Facebook groups, working with social media influencers and collaborating with similar/non-competing businesses. By working with like-companies and on-brand influencers, you are allowing new audiences to discover your brand, and hopefully they just might turn into followers, brand advocates and customers.
Homework: Map out a potential sales funnel for your business
Where can you go to drive people?
What are you going to do to entice them off social media?
What is the offer you’ll make them get them over the line?
A well-thought-out brand with killer social media content mixed with a selling system and a plan to drive traffic to your social platforms and website— that’s what it takes to have your strategy win on social. If you have questions or want to further your understanding of the social media landscape, Stevie has some amazing courses, e-books, and resources you can get your hands on here.
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