Strategic Social: It starts with a plan!

Using social media to promote your business isn’t as simple as setting up a blog, a Facebook Page or a twitter account. Creating the right kind of content that is designed to achieve your specific business goals takes some forethought.

A social media plan gives you the opportunity to think through what you want to say and the direction to create content in bulk, eliminating the daily scramble for new content.

Here is a basic outline of what to put in a social media plan:

Who are you?

Write down exactly what it is that you do and why. Have you ever written it down concisely? If so, great, just use that! If not, take the time to write it down.

Who is your audience?

As tempting as it is to say “anyone who will pay me” here, don’t. Who are your primary target audiences? There can be more than one. Describe them as thoroughly as you can (age, gender, type of job, level of income, etc)

What are your key messages?

What do you want people to know about your business? You can have 3-4 and they can range from “we sell a great lightbulb” to “we are committed to the best customer service you can imagine” to “social media doesn’t need to be complicated.”

What are your goals?

Your goals for using social media can vary a lot. Pick 3-4 to focus on for the next 6 months. They can be about increasing sales, but they can also be things like “increase our web presence” “build  relationships with key online influencers”.


This is the real meat of the plan. How are you going to target your audiences with your key messages to achieve your goals?

Give yourself set tasks per week and then fill in an editorial calendar with them. 

Examples could be:

  • Write two blog posts a week.
  • Acquire two guest posts a month.
  • Post daily on Facebook.
  • Post three times a day on twitter.

You can then expand on those further:

  • Every Monday share a photo of ____ on Facebook and twitter
  • Every Tuesday promote a blog post
  • Every Wednesday share a useful tip on ______ on Facebook and twitter.
  • Every other Friday are guest posts on the blog.
  • Every Saturday share a post from the archives of your site.

Aside from your editorial calendar what else could you plan to do to attract your audience?

  • Write guest posts for other blogs.
  • Offer to be interviewed in podcasts
  • Build your newsletter list and commit to sending a monthly newsletter.
  • Hold bi-monthly tweetups

The sky is the limit for tactics. Just remember to be realistic and to think about what your audience wants and would find of value.


Based on your tactics and goals, what measurements should you be tracking over the next six months? What is a reasonable result to indicate success?

  • List a baseline and decide on a reasonable increase in twitter followers. (50 a month?)
  • Increase engagement on your Facebook page by 25% 50% 100% per month (pick something reasonable based on your current engagement levels).
  • Increase visits to your site by 20% over 6 months.
  • Increase sales by 20% over 6 months.
  • Have 6 guest posts published over 6 months.


Now take all the above information and put it down on paper. You’re more likely to commit to it and do it if it’s a proper and formal document. 

Then do the work. It doesn’t always pay off immediately, but growing your online presence slowly and authentically is the best way to do it. Ask someone to be an accountability partner if you think that will help. 

Knowing how to get where you want to go is always easier with a map. Your plan is that roadmap to the destination you’re trying to get to (your goals) - make sure you have one.

Leave a comment below giving us an example of one of your key messages, goals, or tactics.