By Christopher Smith, account manager, Sha-Izwe Communications

Part 3 of 5

Finding website and social media content can unexpectedly prove to be one of the most difficult parts of developing a content plan and certainly one of the most crucial. It is easy to start out but becomes a challenge as time goes by and you realise you can’t recycle the content you’ve already posted.

There are a few fundamentals when putting together a content plan for social media. Firstly, social media was never intended to be a billboard. As simple as it sounds, social media is supposed to be social and your content should always point back to that. People are interested in seeing the life of your company behind the scenes, and the interesting and fun aspects of your company.

As we saw in the previous article (Part 2), looking at each social network individually and holistically, we saw that it is important to ask “why is this content important and what messaging does it align to”.

For example, you may want to focus on specific product or service offerings. So make sure your content aligns to this. Once a week, make sure your plan has a social media post centred around services to make sure your audience remembers that you don’t only sell product but also provide services.

When developing a social plan, remember to make sure that the content aligns to your audience. In the first article (Part 1) we discussed researching your audience.

If the majority of your clientele are under 23 years old, they may only just be entering the market and won’t be able to afford high-end items. Alternatively, the products you may be marketing may not be relevant to them.

For example, certain clothing items may not be relevant to your audience. If you started seeing half ripped clothing with diamonds embroidered on the Cape Union Mart Facebook page, it may seem odd and not applicable to their outdoor and camping audience.

The goal is to build an audience that is unique to you, one that views you as a leader in what you specialise in. Ensure that your content communicates this in a subtle but fun way. It may not mean boasting, but posting about achievements and moments you are proud of within your company are important. Communicate the company ethos. For example, if your company prides itself on health & wellness, show some moments relating to this, such as wellness days, blood drives, healthy food initiatives etc.

Social media can be fun and exciting, especially when the entire company is onboard with the social media vision and strategy. You’ll find you won’t be the only one creating content but the rest of the employees will assist in creating fun, behind-the-scenes content. But remember, posts need to be managed centrally where information and content are gathered. Only designated people should be allowed to do posts. This needs to be strictly controlled.

Getting staff and management on board is hugely beneficial. Often statistics can help motivate this. If you can show that x amount of people saw and interacted with content on social media, it will help to get employees and management on board.

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