Content Planning for Social Media

Written by

Linda Prafke

Lana is a passionate educator, a highly sought-after business coach and a Certified Management Consultant.

In today's world, content is king.

There is a great demand for new and exciting content that keeps businesses “relevant” and engages the audience. There is a common expectation among businesses that they must continuously create and spread content in order to gain customers and boost sales, but not everyone capitalizes on the opportunities that social media provides. 

Social media accounts give companies the opportunity to interact and form a professional relationship with their potential customers and reach a wider audience outside of their current followers. 

There are a lot of companies out there that do not take advantage of social media’s full potential, or do not know how to use it effectively. For example, inconsistent branding (such as the company’s voice, or choice of graphics or content) or infrequent posting can damage the company’s reputation by confusing the audience or cause them to lose interest. Additionally, businesses do not often utilize a content planner, which can result in incoherent content and lead to an unengaged audience.

While content planning saves time, reduces stress, and ensures that you aren’t scrambling to create a post at the last minute, you need to make sure that what you end up scheduling is quality content. Planning (and scheduling) your social media content ahead of time gives you the opportunity to put some real thought into what it is you want to share with your audience.

At the beginning of every month, sit down and plan out your social media content by either writing it down or using an online social media scheduler that allows you to enter in notes to yourself. It is best if you have a detailed list that has been segmented into the various platforms you use. You can use your planner to:

  • House content ideas
  • Organize where you will share your content and when
  • Hammer out the finer details such as what you will reference or write
  • Ensure that you finish any content that you plan to draw attention to, like a new blog post
  • Plan how your audience will go through your sales funnel if they start from one of the social media platforms
  • Set and track monthly goals (the number of posts, shares, comments, inbox messages, orders, or new followers, for example)
  • Track posts, promotions, and traffic to your website
  • Schedule photo shoots or source free images from sites like Pexels or Pixabay

 

So what type of content should you post on social media, anyways? The type of content that you post will depend on the type of business or brand that you are representing, what kind of relationship you want to have with your customers, and the level of professionalism that you need to show in order to maintain that brand identity and relationship. This is referred to as your brand voice; your brand’s unique personality that comes out in the way that you communicate with your audience and customers over social media (although it should be the same in person, too). That personality should be present in everything that you write – Facebook posts, Instagram captions, email content, webinar copy and video or podcast scripts, etc.

Before you begin planning your content, decide on your business’s personality by thinking about which characteristics you want to consistently showcase, and whether or not this personality serves your target audience well. As a starting point, write down:

  • Your catchphrases
  • Your most commonly used introductions and sign offs
  • Your core values
  • Your message
  • Your target audience
  • How you want your business to be viewed

 

Make it fun

Now that you’ve figured out the personality that you want your company to have, try to think about how you can make your social media content even more engaging. For example, incorporating humor can increase the number of times your audience engages with your posts, pictures, statuses and tweets. 

Some examples:

  • Motivational Monday
  • Wisdom Wednesday
  • Memes
  • Funny photos
  • Funny quotes
  • Inspiring story
  • Behind-the-scenes
  • National or international holidays
  • National or international days relevant to your business (such as National Entrepreneur Day)

 

Engage with your audience

Show your audience that there is someone standing behind your company’s social media platforms who is willing to interact with its customers.

  • Out of office
  • Try it Tuesdays
  • Ask your audience a question
  • Answer a question
  • Create a poll
  • Webinar or Facebook live
  • Host a contest
  • Customer testimonials

 

Educate

One of the keys to building an interested audience and gaining new customers is education. Depending on your company and the product or service that it offers, your audience may need to learn more about who you are and what it is you offer. For example:

  • Details about one of your products or services
  • Sneak peek
  • Relevant information about your industry

 

Promote

Use your social media platforms to not only spread the word about your products and services, but to actively promote them. For example:

  • Giveaways
  • Contests
  • Promotions (coupon codes, buy one get one with link to store or payment processing system)
  • Product/service description or review

Get over 50 content ideas:

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