Social Media Management Guide

Social media management is a vast subject with many nuts and bolts. But it certainly is becoming an ever more prevalent area people are interested in. Especially those who, like most of us nowadays, use social media as a business tool (or in some cases run their businesses entirely off social media posts). If this is you, then you need to stay on top of an upload schedule, communicate and engage with followers, continuously scan the market and competition for new possible growth, and continue to report on your performance, all while your audience and the platforms themselves continuously change, grow, and expand.

Because there are so many avenues to explore and understand to run a successful social media marketing campaign for your persona, brand, or business, you may even be thinking about hiring a social media manager (or two, or three) as well as social media management packages to help with the demand of numerous social media posts. A lot of people find success in this. Or, perhaps you’re a business owner or digital marketer who needs the full story on how to manage social media effectively. Whatever the case we’ve got you covered.

We’re going to dive in and cover all the information you need on social media management. From defining what social media management is to creating a plan, we’ve broken down the complete process and we guide you through a complete understanding for you to implement into your own social media strategy.

Social media management tools

Table of contents:

  1. What is social media management?

  2. Why is efficient social media management important?

  3. What is a social media manager?

  4. The top social media platforms for social media management.

  5. Social media management: Creating a plan.

1. What is social media management?

Defined simply and broadly, social media management is the management of different social media channels. This includes continuously analysing the different social media audiences and developing a strategy that’s specifically tailored to them. It means creating and publishing relevant content onto social media profiles.

It also includes monitoring communication and engagement, collaborating with influencers, monitoring, measuring, and reporting on social media performance and ROI (return on investment) throughout individual channels. And it also means staying aware of competitors and seeking areas for improvement and getting ahead of the competition.

With so much to juggle and take care of, it’s no wonder a lot of companies are choosing to hire social media managers and diversify their teams to tackle each area. There is, however, a lot to be gained, and brands and businesses cannot afford to ignore the influence of social media.

Social media management services

2. Why is efficient social media management important?

The prevalence of social media today is unignorable and the business potential of these channels is immense. Brands and businesses use social media posts to drive their goals and help facilitate a successful marketing strategy through the entire sales funnel. From brand awareness to online subscribers to in-store visits and purchases. And some of the many benefits of efficient social media management include:


  • Outreach: There’s no doubt about it, social media marketing is the best way to reach the most amount of people worldwide. With social media posts, a small spice shop in New York City has the capability of reaching and doing business with potentially billions of people across the globe. The more efficient social media management is, the more people a business can effectively reach. And with such a variety of platforms from LinkedIn to Instagram to Twitter that house a diverse range of people, it’s the best way to reach more people.


  • More cost-effective: Proper social media management means more outreach and more opportunities. The giants in social media are free to sign-up with, and with an efficient strategy for social media management in place, you will be able to more effectively reach more potential customers and have less chance of missing out on opportunities such as catching the latest trends that could convert into more followers and sign-ups.


  • Better performance: Using social media marketing is a way to gauge performance. Businesses can build and generate more leads and sales online. With efficient social media management, marketers can also view the data in reports on how each platform is doing.



But as you’ve already read, there are many aspects to social media management. This means managing social media efficiently is incredibly important for a business to stay on top of things and continue to run properly and succeed over time.

To accomplish efficient social media management, businesses often employ social media managers and, in larger contexts, various teams. The more each platform is used, the larger the number the team will need to be. The goal is to streamline the process and make it more efficient. The fact is, it can simply become too complex to handle for a single individual.

3. What is a social media manager?

A social media manager is a professional who takes care of different aspects of social media management such as marketing, content scheduling, and engagement. They may work freelance or as part of an agency to help brands and businesses manage their time more effectively and smoothen the process daily. They can also keep up-to-date and report on trends and the competition. They also help achieve social media goals like gaining more followers and building revenue streams.

Often, they’re employed for their creativity, conversational skills, and upbeat energy required for such a demanding cross-platform role. They will also, in some cases, collaborate with the different teams across various social media channels. In essence, they take care of the various moving parts and keep on top of the requirements for running and building a successful social media marketing strategy.

Social media presence is key for your business

4. The top social media platforms for social media management.

By definition, there are no limits on how many social media platforms management falls under, or how many channels social media managers deal with. But the main social media channels that businesses use and find the most profitable are:


  • Instagram: Instagram has almost 1 billion users and has been a staple for social media marketers for some time. Its image and video focused, which appeals to particular brands and businesses more than others. It lends itself to creativity and appeals to a wide market of generally younger users. Over 70% of Americans between the ages of 18-and 29 use Instagram and nearly 50% of Americans aged between 30-and 49. This makes Instagram a fantastic place to reach a very large demographic.


  • Twitter: Twitter has 330 million monthly users. The beauty of Twitter is it generally attracts a more mature demographic who wants top information, fast. Twitter emphasises a linear, better quality two-way conversion approach. This makes it ideal for brands and businesses to connect directly with potential and existing customers.


  • Facebook: Facebook has almost 2 billion daily users. This makes it very attractive as a social media marketing tool. More than 50% of US adults use Facebook multiple times per day. That makes it a brilliant tool to market to a diverse demographic.


  • YouTube: YouTube has more than 2 billion users and has access to more than 80% of adults in the US alone. Brands and businesses use YouTube for everything from creating how-to videos to showing behind-the-scenes footage of their brand. It’s a great place to connect and can earn businesses extra revenue with targeted ads.


  • LinkedIn: LinkedIn is the biggest professional network in the world. More than 774 million professionals use it. It’s a source for recruiters to find ideal candidates. It’s also a place to share news-related material and market statistics. And it’s a powerful place for brands to build and share via their content marketing strategy.

5. Social media management: Creating a plan.

A plan is needed for different social media accounts

Like anything else you want to succeed, creating a solid plan is key. To get the most out of social media management, it’s important to go through the necessary steps to get a full brief and understanding of what will be required for you to succeed on each platform.

Here are the steps to proper social media management planning.

●      Choose the right social media channels.

Choosing the right social media platforms for your brand is important. Although you may want to, being active on every social media platform in existence could wear you thin and might not yield the ROI you were hoping for. Many factors will go into what social media channels you should choose. In the previous section, we gave brief details on the biggest names in social media and their demographics, which should help you decide.

However, be sure to take into account what social media channels will suit your business more, how many you can effectively manage and operate at once, and how much time and attention you can give to each platform before creating accounts.

●      Conduct a social media audit.

Conducting a full social media audit will give you a grasp of where you are and will improve how you use social media. It will:

● Tell you the effectiveness of your current strategy.

● Pinpoint where precious resources are being wasted and could be better spent.

● Show you what social media channels get the best results.

● Indicates what social media channels impact your web results.

To get started, make a list and detail of all the social media channels your business currently operates on. Write down the platforms, handles, and usernames. Take into account if the platforms and account names align with your brand and values and align them if not.

Then, gather reports by analysing the performance of each social media channel. Review reach, audience growth, and engagement rates. Look at the data and see if things are improving or getting worse over time.

Lastly, compare these findings and your results with past performance records, industry benchmark standards, or competitors. Although you may not want to, this step is important to gain a true insight into what’s working, what isn’t, your strengths, and your weaknesses. Taking this final step will move you one step closer to better social media management.

●      Set reasonable goals.

Every business and every social media management plan needs reasonable goals to go after and attain. Without clear goals and objectives, there’s no reason for compelling action. Your goals should be clear, actionable, and achievable. So, we recommend setting SMART goals. SMART stands for:

Specific.

Set goals that are specific to your business, the social media channel, and your mission. For example, let’s say you use Instagram or want to begin to use Instagram to help drive your business, you could create a specific goal like ‘gain X amount of followers’ or ‘achieve X amount of brand mentions from influencers. This must be reasonable, however, and not something seemingly impossible to achieve.

Measurable.

Your results must be measurable to know if what you’re doing works or not. That’s why you need to quantify the process. Social media channels such as Instagram have built-in metrics systems to measure data, such as traffic flow, for example. Use these systems to track your progress. But be careful not to get stuck in what we call vanity metrics, which are numbers that simply make social media managers and others feel good when they, in reality, don’t always generate business.

Achievable.

Thinking big is great. Thinking big is important. But there’s a difference between thinking big and thinking big about what is achievable. Set reasonable goals for yourself that are truly achievable. Gaining 500 million followers for your brand is not realistic. But 1 million is certainly realistic and achievable for almost anyone given the right strategic approach and execution.

Relevant.

Your goals should be relevant to your brand and business and should inspire you. It can be easy to be side-tracked by insignificant targets that in actuality won’t make much or any difference to your business goals. Instead of giving energy away to minor pursuits, make your goals inspiring and relevant to your long-term business success.

Timely.

Deadlines make people work. Without a deadline, a date on which you would like your ship to harbour, you can end up drifting out in an endless sea and never dock. Give yourself reasonable due dates inside a trackable calendar. Share these with your team if necessary. And check it regularly.

●      Establish and monitor KPIs (key performance indicators).

A sound part of any business and social media management plan is to track KPIs. You have your SMART goals, now it’s time to see what’s working. To do so is relatively simple in the case of social media because they’ve become increasingly targeted at brands and businesses for growth.

An example of tracking KPIs might be that you set a goal of attaining 1,000 new subscribers by X date using the SMART goals system. To track this KPI, you would simply log in to the social media channel you planned on achieving this goal at the same time every week or month, depending on the timeframe you gave yourself, and take note of how many new subscribers you’ve attained. Or, you can use a social media management tool (which we will get into later) to monitor growth.

●      Research your audience.

Different media is used for different social channels

Understanding your audience and how they interact with your brand is essential to proper social media management. Effective marketing means knowing what resonates with your target audience and what doesn’t. The more you know about what works with your target audience, the more chance you will have at successfully recruiting new customers.

To research and get a better understanding of your audience, follow these three steps:

  1. Survey your existing customers.

Don’t be shy. Ask your customers directly what they resonate with. What is it about your brand that they like so much that they buy from you? An easy and effective way to do this is to create polls. Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms allow you to create polls so people can vote. This method especially, since it is anonymous, will help you get a more honest and accurate set of data.

2. Identify your current audience.

Most social media platforms have built-in data sets so you can find out key statistics on your audience. You can identify your current audience’s broad demographics such as age ranges, location, gender, interests and more. Analyse and compare the data from your different social media accounts to find trends and differences that can help you grow.

3. Create customer personas.

With your newfound audience data, you can outline them into one or more customer personas. These customer personas (sometimes called ‘customer avatars’) can you help you better adapt and adopt marketing strategies that more accurately align with your audience.

●      Create a social media calendar.

Keeping track of all the different aspects of social media management is vital to your success. Creating, inputting, and keeping track of the necessary tools and techniques you will use on your social media platforms with a calendar will prove invaluable to your brand.

Begin by mapping your primary goals, such as campaigns, through the year. These might include product launches, seasonal specials, news and announcements. Then, mark important dates for financials and other necessities. Tax-related deadlines, for example. Then, mark in the more regular stuff like monthly or weekly meetings and content publication dates like blog posts and photos.

●     Find and use the right social media management tools.

Finally, proper social media management these days will almost certainly require the use of the right tools. And there are a lot of options to choose from that can be made specific to your requirements.

The sorts of tools you will need will differ depending on your brand and the social media channels you will be using. Your business may be image-heavy, so you will consider photo editing and creation tools. Or, perhaps you will be doing a lot of communicating over Twitter. Whatever your direction, these tools are designed to make the job of creating and implementing different aspects of social media management smoother and more effective.

Here are some of the best paid and unpaid social media management tools.

●      Better social media management tools:

Social media management tools
  1. Hootsuite: Hootsuite is a one of the most popular social media management tools that helps managers and marketers manage across channels. You can reply to comments cross-channel, monitor your social media strategies with statistics, and more.
  2. Buffer: This application can help you manage all your social media accounts, build a publishing schedule including images, and more. One of the perks is that it’s available as a smartphone app, too.
  3. Sprout Social: Sprout Social is similar to Hootsuite in that it allows you to easily manage across various social media platforms. From content publishing schedules to analytical reports. It’s unique, however, in that it provides customer relationship management (CRM) features, too. This helps you better understand your customers so you can better serve them in more authentic, longer-lasting customer relationships.

●      Content creation tools:

  1. For incredible free images, try Unsplash, Pixabay, and Pexels.
  2. To create beautiful imagery, try Canva and Makeagif.
  3. For fun, sharable social media videos, try Biteable, Shakr, and Lumen5.
  4. To easily write and share text and copy, try Google Docs and Grammarly.

●      Content calendars:

  1. Google Calendar: This is one of the best, most reliable, and most widely used calendars to manage and easily share across teams.
  2. Google Spreadsheet: A lot of people like to use Spreadsheets for precise and customised content calendars.
  3. Free Calendar Templates: Download ready-made templates for social media calendar management.

●     Social media content creation.

You’ve got your goals, your channels open, your social media management tools. Now it’s time to create and publish. As you grow and scale your business across your various social media platforms, you will need a constant stream of relevant content to publish. And effective social media management requires publishing the right type of content at the right time.

Consider these main types of content:

Copywriting.

Any business sharing written content online needs to use effective copy. Whether it’s writing a caption on an Instagram post or crafting a description for a new product, copywriting is the art and science of writing in a way that attracts, entices, and propels followers and customers to take action.

Copy that resonates with your audience and builds your brand does two things:

  1. Speaks to your brand voice. Consider the style and tone of the language and how if it fits well and properly speaks to your brand voice. If there’s a mismatch, readers will know, and it will come across as less authentic.
  2. Considers the audience’s preferences. A powerful and effective tool you can use is to scan your audience’s tonality and likes and write in a way that reflects that. In essence, this means speaking your customer’s language.

Images.

A picture speaks a thousand words, and the types of images you will be using across your platforms will have an enormous impact on your brand perception. The pictures you choose for your profile pictures, Instagram photos, and everything else, should be a reflection of your brand. Make sure the style fits like a glove. Make sure the colours are on point. Your imagery should be an extension of everything you do.

Social media strategy in action

Video.

The impact of video has increased tremendously in recent years. More than 500 million people watch videos on Facebook every day, for example. And videos drive 12 x the number of shares per video than per image or text.

Just like images, the types of videos should be an extension of your brand. They should project your brand’s voice. Although videos might take more time in terms of production and management than images or text, the ROI can be huge. Consider these three different types of video:

  1. Publish videos, both short and long-form, shot professionally by an agency for social media campaigns.
  2. Create informal, documentary-style videos with your smartphone or handheld for a more earthy, behind-the-scenes look.
  3. Show and share how-to videos which provide value to your customers.
A social media strategy is vital for your marketing effort

How can social media management services help my business?

Keeping up with all of the various social media efforts available may be challenging.

Social media management services can help by providing a single platform to help you post content, track engagement, and measure results allowing you to reach your target audience and social media users with the message you want to convey.

Additionally, social media management services can help save you time by providing automated features like scheduling and content curation.

The agency or service provider may also help you to save money as they will already have full access to the necessary social media management tools.

In addition to this, social media management services should have the expertise to help you avoid costly mistakes that come from a lack of experience in using social media tools.

Social Media Management Final Thoughts

There’s an incredible amount to know when it comes to social media management. Effective social media management requires goal setting, planning, and implementing the right kind of content to grow any business. And these are the fundamental steps to undertake to propel you in the right direction for social media management success.