Foreword Online

Ideas, information and industry news for collegiate retailers



How to Use Social Media in Your Marketing Plans

Posted by Joe Clarkin on 9/22/14 11:00 PM
Topics: social media, MBS Monthly Marketing Plans

Every month, Foreword Online puts out a marketing plan that we hope our readers decide to implement in their stores. However, we understand that it would be unreasonable to expect each and every one of you to use our marketing plans 12 months a year. In fact, many of you are probably interested in creating your own marketing plans. And if you've ever read one of ours, you know that perhaps the first place you'll want to start is planning what you're going to do on social media. So with that in mind, we've found a great article with some tips to help you do just that. In her article at outbrain.com, Natalie Chan has compiled some essential examples of things you need to do in order to successfully implement social media into your next (or first) marketing plan. We've put in an excerpt from Natalie's article below, but her full article is available here if you would like to read the full thing (and you should!):

2) Attack Each Social Media Outlet Differently by Listening

Now that you understand all the different types of social media that you may be interested in using for marketing efforts, it’s time to start planning your social media marketing strategy. If you’re planning on posting to Twitter, Facebook, a social news site, and a video sharing site, your content needs to be different for each one. The way you understand what content will resonate with each website’s audience is by listening to what is being said. Using Google Alerts is a great place to start. Other tools like Social Mention, Hootsuite, and Topsy are great ways to listen and learn how to interact in different communities.

3) Be Share Happy

Using social media effectively is all about posting (relevant information) routinely and regularly. As such, your social media marketing plan must include a schedule of when you’re going to post, or at least a commitment to post once a day, twice a day, once a week, etc. Stay consistent in your posts, as you build up an audience, your followers will be expecting new content.

In addition to posting new content regularly, make sure you’re also sharing other people’s content whenever possible. Embed “share” links on all of your blogs, repost others’ content that’s relevant to your brand or goals, and post content that’s interesting enough that your audience will be motivated to share it on their own.

4) Acknowledge Mistakes, Don’t Hide Them

With the online world, mess-ups and “uh oh” moments are bound to happen. Perhaps you meant to type “Announcing a new product today!” but instead (thanks to auto-correct!) wrote, “Announcing a nude project today!” and accidently hit post before making the correction. While the example above might be a little extreme, trust us—goof ups happen more regularly than we’d all like to think. In the event that you make a social media faux pas, don’t panic, and don’t try to delete the post—chances are your followers already saw it, and will be miffed if you attempt to erase it and act as though the event never happened. Instead, you can remedy your errors by posting a status update apologizing for the mistake, offering an explanation if you’d like, and even making a joke about it. The more open and honest you are about your errors, the more likeable and trustworthy you’ll be to your audience.

About Joe Clarkin

Joe Clarkin is a former copywriter at MBS. When he’s not working or studying, you’re most likely to find him reading a book or watching a game.

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