With a staggering 4.8 billion people worldwide now active on social platforms, it’s evident that we are experiencing an unprecedented surge in usage and the emergence of various platforms, such as Threads, currently holding the record as the fastest-growing platform in history at the time of writing this post. The power of social media goes beyond mere connection; it enables us to communicate, express opinions, and even make direct purchases without the need to visit a website.
Short snippets of text, photos, and videos cover the landscape making real-time dissemination and collection of information the reality of today.
But how do you as a brand determine what to focus on from the massive list of options? How can you keep up with the ever-changing landscape? This along with the key question, “What do we do?!” are questions we hear often here at Bloom Communications.
Social media continues to change and your brand has to change with it. Here are the top 3 considerations to help you dive into a refresh of your own social media strategy and plan.
Step 1: Define your Audience
This takes us back to Marketing 101. Understanding your audience is key to your social media strategy. You can’t assume who they are or what they want to see. This may shift a bit each year, so it’s wise to take a look at your audience personas/avatars on an annual basis at a minimum.
Don’t jump on the latest bandwagon just because you think you “need” to be on TikTok or Threads. The first questions you should ask yourself and answer are, 1) Who makes up our audience base and 2) What platforms are they on?
Defining your audience goes deeper than just a simple, “She’s a 30-year-old single woman living in the U.S.” This description is too broad and won’t give you much insight into where you need to be or even the type of content you need to focus on creating.
We craft personas that provide detail behind each audience target in a visual layout. This information can often spread across 3-5 pages offering valuable insight to the organization. This type of document helps everyone on your team visualize who the target audience member is and to see them as a person with real needs, desires, and challenges. It creates a connection so as you then approach content, it can be targeted and authentic.
Here are a few categories we like to define:
- Overview of the target—demographic data (age, gender, ethnicity, income, marital status, household makeup)
- A summary paragraph that defines who they are (with a sample photo)
- Psychographics—wants, needs, desires, and challenges
- Personal challenges specific to brand attributes
- Current awareness of your brand
- How the target audience consumes information
- Where the target audience consumes information
- Specific social media platforms they use
Many times research is needed to gather this level of information and this can be achieved in a variety of ways based on your budget. One immediate step is to look at your current customer base and review who makes up the current mix.
Step 2: Review Social Media Platform Demographics
Do your research. Understanding your audiences will help you now determine where they are on social media and what platforms your organization should focus on.
Search for the latest social media platform studies by starting a Google search or asking ChatGPT. A few prompts to get you started include:
- Provide me with the top three social media studies that show the demographics of users worldwide
- Provide me with a list of the top social media platforms arranged by demographic
Each platform appeals to different generations and it’s important to understand how. For example, you don’t want to put all of your efforts into Facebook when your audience members are on TikTok or Instagram. Understanding your audience and where they are will help you compare the platforms that should be of focus for your brand.
Again it’s important not to assume. For example, many would say an older demographic can be found on LinkedIn. That may also be true but according to a 2023 study titled, Social media demographics to inform your brand’s strategy in 20232, Millennials prove to dominate the platform. And, while Facebook is the dinosaur of social media, it still has the most active users of any social platform…approximately 2.989 billion monthly active users!
Know the mix of the platforms. As you compare your target audience to the audience that each platform caters to, it’s important to strike a balance on which platforms to be on and how much time to devote to each one. The beauty of social media is that you can monitor and measure performance (impressions, clicks, engagement, conversions) and optimize your strategy in real time.
Step 3: Determine your Bandwidth
Many brands make the mistake of taking on too much too soon. You may be in that exact position as you read this. Do you have multiple platforms and feel like you aren’t doing one really well? That is the first indicator to take a step back. The first two steps we’ve shared will help you to narrow down your top platforms.
If you can only manage one, put your focus there and be the master at it. If you can take on two, ensure they are the right mix for your audience and outline a solid strategy and implementation plan to keep them active. The worst thing you can do is have a stale or abandoned platform promoted across your website and brand assets.
This assessment may mean you need to close a particular platform down (or hide it temporarily). It’s best to stay focused and ensure you can keep your content fresh and have the time to truly engage with your audiences.
Don’t allow your social media platforms just be a random menagerie of content across platforms you’re not even sure your audience cares about. A refreshed social media strategy can help you refocus your goals and objectives, clean up your platforms, and begin to develop a solid implementation plan.
Bloom Communications specializes in helping organizations create compelling and engaging social media strategies and focused activities to drive results. We’d love to work with you to help you build yours. Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Coming Soon! Keep an eye out for our new social media marketing guide. The content will give details about launching a successful social media marketing strategy and campaign. Available soon for purchase.
- Smart Insights® Global Social Media Statistics Research Summary, by Dave Chaffey, June 7, 2023.
- Sproutsocial, Social media demographics to inform your brand’s strategy in 2023, by Brent Barnhart, April 28, 2023.