In a recent post, I talked about the importance of social media marketing for speakers, and I gave you the basics to understand it better. Today, it’s time to implement! Let me guide you in the process of creating a GREAT social media content strategy ideal for speakers.
Once you know why content marketing is an excellent opportunity to make yourself known in the industry, you need to start working towards getting the results, and it all starts with a plan.
Let’s go step by step.
First, what is a social media content strategy?
A social media strategy is a document where you outline and plan the tactics to reach your goals on social media. Here it is helpful to remember the purpose of social media itself, which is to make connections with others. Therefore, a social media content strategy for speakers should be aimed to build trust and strengthen your brand’s name by reaching and engaging with a larger audience.
To do this, your social media content strategy must have, at least, the following items perfectly detailed:
- The tactics you’ll use. Let’s say posts, giveaways, lives, etc.
- The metric to look up to when doing follow-up.
- The platforms you’ll use and their specific goals.
- Roles and responsibilities of whoever is doing each task.
A step-by-step guide to creating a social media content strategy for speakers
1. Setting the goal
As you might know from our previous article, social media is all about goals.
If there isn’t a specific goal to achieve, what makes your strategy different from just posting random pictures whenever you feel in the mood?
Setting up goals also helps us keep track of our efforts and align everything in our social media content strategy. Thus, it prevents us from spending more money and time on tasks that are not giving us positive results.
Depending on your brand, there are diverse goals you can pursue. Maybe you want to reach a different audience, or you want to make yourself known in a specific industry. Line them out and assign them a priority score, so you know which ones are the most important when you start drafting your content ideas later on.
Something to remember is that whatever goals you decide to focus on have to be realistic and achievable in a specific period.
For example, instead of just saying “I want to get more speaking gigs”, go for “I want to get 10 speaking gigs booked in these places by the end of the month”
Here’s a pro-tip to define your goals efficiently: go for SMART goals.
SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant to you and your audience, and Time-based.
Once your goals have checked all of those, you can move forward with your social media content strategy.
2. Researching and selecting the right kind of content.
The core of a social media content strategy is, yes, content. So, we need to think carefully about what kind of content can help us achieve our goals and if it is something we want or can do.
First, you want to do some research. Based on your goal and your audience, what kind of content is working on social media right now? What platforms are your audience most active on? Take note of everything you find useful and think about how you can adapt it for your own social media.
Then, think about the kind of content you can actually create because you have to be able to produce it consistently if you want your social media content strategy to succeed.
Maybe podcasts are really buzzing lately but you don’t have the time to plan and record new episodes that often, or you prefer to make videos instead. In that case, it might be better to focus your strategy on what you do best and enjoy – and what fits in your calendar.
Try and find a balance between the content you like and can do regularly, and the content that does better amongst your audience.
Some ideas to consider are:
- Blog posts
- Basic Graphics
3. Research the best platforms for you
Don’t buy in. Many gurus say that to be on social media you have to be on all the mainstream platforms available — that is to say Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and, sometimes, YouTube and Pinterest— But that is NOT the truth. And it’s not true for two reasons.
First and foremost, NOT all social media platforms are good for you.
Depending on your audience and your industry, some platforms will leverage better results than others for multiple reasons. It might be because they are more popular within your audience, or they prioritize the type of content you want to focus on.
On the other hand, most speakers underestimate the amount of work that involves creating content and managing many social media accounts, and it’s easy to abandon them after a couple of weeks, even if you have a perfectly crafted social media content strategy.
This is why hiring a professional marketing agency can help a lot, but, even if it’s only you, start with a reasonable number of platforms you know you can handle.
If I had to choose something for you to take from this article it would be this: consistency and quality are the keys here. Think of each platform as a presentation card. They should all be updated regularly to build up trust. So, remember it is always better to have one or two active accounts than a lot of them but with inconsistent posting and old content.
4. Create your branding and client avatar
I can’t stress the importance of branding enough when it comes to marketing. And since we are talking about social media content strategies, this is a good opportunity to bring this topic to the spotlight once again.
Before you create any type of content, you need to create your branding and client avatar. And even if you already have them, I find it useful to go over this information every once in a while, to make sure the goals I’ve set correspond with my audience and branding.
Branding includes everything from the voice, tone, and visuals to messages and characteristics of your ‘brand persona’.
Your client avatar, on the other hand, is a detailed description of the people you are trying to reach out to. As with everything I’ve told you in this post, the more specific, the better.
A great tip here is to do a bit of roleplay. Imagine you’ll have a nice and engaging conversation with someone. How do they talk? How do you interact with them in this environment? What do you two talk about? Take notes of this and start building your brand persona.
All of this will allow you to create guidelines you and everyone in your team can follow to keep the conversations personal and your messages coherent, making up for a consistent brand image.
5. Create content categories or pillars
Congrats! You’ve done all the heavy-duty work and now it’s time to start planning.
With all the information you collected, you can create multiple contents that serve your goals. But one type of content can’t cover that many goals at once, so it’s better to create content pillars or categories for each of them.
For example, if your goal is booking more speaking gigs, you could create a category aimed toward credibility and testimonies, in which you can integrate booking as a call-to-action.
You can also create categories related to different audiences if you speak on different topics. You could talk about mental health for young people but also senior citizens.
Remember each pillar should have a clear purpose in your feed and you should be able to recognize it in each post.
6. Plan your calendar
Once you’ve defined your content pillars, take a calendar and plan out what and when are you going to post. The recipe here differs from speaker to speaker depending on all the research you’ve done about your audience.
But don’t worry. You’ll quickly find a balance between all of your pillars when the weeks pass and your start getting results.
Here you can see an example of the content calendar we have created for a client of ours:
As you can see, it only details the categories, we are not talking about creating any content yet. In this stage, you could also define posting time and frequency for each content.
Look at your research and find the best hours to post — those are the hours your users are most active and willing to interact on the platform of your choice.
7. Create your content
You are almost there! All of this planning has finally led us to create some content. As you might notice, a social media content strategy is only as good as the research behind it, and the actual content is a small, yet important, part of it all.
At this stage, you can choose between hiring someone else to create all the content you’ve laid out or do it yourself.
Pro tip about content creation apps: NEVER use the templates as they are.
Most graphic design tools have templates and predesigned images, and, I know, they are very easy to use, but that only makes it more likely for everyone else to use them as well. And you don’t want to look like everyone else, right?
Instead, use these templates as guidelines and modify them to match your brand as much as possible. Give them your unique touch, so to speak.
8. Settle metrics to measure success
Now that you have planned and created your social media content strategy, how do you know if it’s working? This is when metrics come along.
Metrics are like a thermometer for your performance. They tell you if you are hot or cold in the social media game, and they also provide insight on what you should improve if your results are lacking.
Since almost anything on the internet can be tracked, there are thousands of metrics you can use. Some of the most common are:
- Audience size: This refers to the number of followers, Facebook page likes, etc.
- Engagement: Retweets, likes, shares, link clicks, comments, etc.
- Post reach: This will show how many people can see your posts.
- Leads/Sales: Subscribers, ROI, etc.
Take a look back at your goals and your platforms to find the right metrics for you. If your goal is to increase brand awareness, focus on the audience size and reach, and so on.
You can even use these metrics to break down your goals into specific objectives for each platform, creating a more detailed plan.
9. Implementing and following up
By now you should have a complete social media content strategy to start implementing. And there are tons of apps that can make your life easier in this matter.
Hootsuite is one of the most common apps to use for social media scheduling on any platform. Personally, I prefer SocialBee and use it for the majority of my clients. You can also use Later or even Creator Studio for Instagram and Facebook.
Pro Tip – while schedulers make life easier, many platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook will not give as much visibility to posts that are shared using schedulers. If you really want it to be seen, posting natively (by hand) is the best way.
Also, know that it is not necessary for you to have a whole month planned and scheduled. You can start small with just one or two weeks scheduled in advance and move forward from there.
After that, you want to monitor your efforts and do some follow-up regarding your goals. Compare them with the results you are getting and, by the end of the month (or the period you’ve settled in your plan) see if you need to do some adjustments in your strategy.
Remember social media is about trial and error and pivoting when necessary is a good thing. Your first plan will never be perfect, it is a gem that should be polished over time and can always improve as you get to know your audience more and you grow as a speaker.
Whoa! There’s so much to cover when it comes to social media, but hopefully, this guide serves you as a blueprint to create your own social media content strategy. Now, it’s your turn to rock the game!