Social media has become a major player in the realm of online marketing. We can all agree on the advances of social media since the old days of in 2003. And now with 27% of total U.S. internet time spent on social networking sites (Source: Experian), businesses are expected to have a social presence online.

Social media is a way for customers to interact directly with the brands they love. It’s not enough to just have a presence, implementing a strategy to correctly reach and cultivate these communities on social media websites is a must. In many cases business owners are just too busy, which is completely understandable. This is where you and I come into play as the savvy “social media specialist” we are. Follow these simple steps below and you will be on your way to social media bliss. These are some steps I would take to manage a company’s social media accounts.

Communication Is Key

The first step is to communicate with the client to discover the purpose of creating their social media profiles. Every industry is different, therefore there is no one size fits all strategy. Nor, is there an official right or wrong way to manage a social media profile, so communication is key to stay on the same page with the client.

Here are a few questions I would ask a client before I set up their profiles:

What do I want to accomplish through social media? What Are Your Goals? Example: To drive sales or to supplement customer service

  • What is your target audience?
  • Will there be anyone else, beside myself, who will be managing your social media accounts?
  • What’s your social media policy on what can be said and by whom?
  • What are some important topics you would like to cover?
  • Who are some of the industry influencers?

These questions will give you better insight to create the correct content, to reach the correct audience.

Research and Planning

The next step is to do preliminary research on your client’s industry news and trends. You want to create content that is relevant to the industry now. This would be a good time to set up Google Alerts to alert you of any new or interesting trends Google indexed, related to your chosen topic.

*Note: It is also good to speak to your client about any discounts, sale promotions, or any other company related news their audience may want to hear.

Keyword research would also be beneficial to stay on topic when creating content for a social media post.

There are tons of tools to help you conduct keyword research. My favorite tools are a Raven Tools, Google Keyword Tool, and Spyfu.

Once you have a finalized, client-approved list of keywords it’s your choice of how you want to organize the list on a content calendar, which brings me to my next point.

Organize Your Content

The next step after the research is completed is to organize the information in a content calendar. Again, how you organize the information is completely up to you. I recommend using a keyword as a theme for each month. Once that is completed you can further brake down the monthly theme into weekly segments, where you cover different topics for that week.

For example:

For month one your theme is chocolate candy.

Week 1 can be the health benefits of chocolate.

Day 1 of Week 1 can be “ Top 5 reasons Chocolate Can Lead To A Healthier Lifestyle.”

Content Calendar Example:

A content calendar is an amazing way to organize and create actionable content. It’s also a way to keep you and the client on the same page.

Again, there are tons of tools to manage social media profiles. Currently, an industry favorite is Houtsuite. Houtsuite is relatively inexpensive and offers ways to manage and schedule content on multiple profiles simultaneously.

Conduct A Reputation Audit

After research and planning is complete and you feel confident that you can effectively manage your clients social media profiles, its time to see what others are already saying about your client’s brand. 25% of consumers who complain about products on Facebook or Twitter expect a response within 1 hour (Source: American Express). Social media is an amazing tool to connect with your customer base, acknowledge them by responding to their concerns.

You should conduct a reputation audit. There may be various ex-employees, demanding clients, or even competitors that may have written bad reviews or complaints. These complaints, no matter how ridiculous, needs to be addressed. By conducting a search on and other similar websites, you can start to get a handle on what’s being said.

You can also do a simple search in Google by typing the brand name and adding “scam” or “reviews”.

Monitor, Promote, Report

Once your audit is complete and all of your marketing ideas are organized into actionable items, the next step is monitor you’re content on the profiles, promote and report your successes . Once again, there are a plethora of tools available to monitor your audience and create custom reports. Followerwonk is amazing for monitoring a Twitter account. I use the reporting and monitoring features on Raventools, but you should find the one that fits best for your budget and your clients needs.

Marketing on social media is about brand exposure, acquiring new customers, and cultivating your client’s online communities. Social media produces almost double the marketing leads of trade shows, telemarketing, direct mail, or PPC. (Source: HubSpot) So, correctly managing a brand’s image is vital for any business. Remember to stay organized and respond to customer inquires because this is a two way conversation.

I welcome any ideas to do my job better, what are some ways you monitor your client’s social media accounts?

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