Emily Maupai Zinberg - 07/11/2022
Read through our social media campaign checklist before creating or planning your next campaign to avoid pitfalls and ensure success.
We’ve seen pressure on many marketers to just “get a social media campaign up and running.” We understand why that happens, but it is easy for a social media campaign to fall flat when there isn’t proper planning and strategy development. There are some best practices and protocols that need to be implemented before a campaign is launched to ensure success.
In this blog, we’re sharing our social media campaign checklist for you to consider when you are planning your next campaign.
Define Your Goal
Why are you running a campaign on social media? Your marketing team may be initiating a campaign across multiple mediums (Google ads, email, social media, etc.). Or it may be a campaign designated solely for a target audience on social media. Either way, it should be designed to achieve an objective(s) that contributes to one of your brand’s overall marketing goals.
Social media marketing used to be a “Wild West” when it came to measuring performance, let alone ROI. But with access to a variety of platform analytics, tracking software tools, and careful planning, evaluating social media initiatives is much easier now.
Decide what you want your campaign to achieve before you make any plans, create assets, or execute tactics. A few common objective examples are:
- Brand Awareness/Reach – grow your brand’s presence among your target audience on social media while also sending people to your website.
- Engagement – engagement on your social media content encourages a connection between your brand and users, and greatly benefits your page ranking.
- Leads – secure new leads by driving users to a conversion point on your website or through lead form ads right in the social media platform.
- Sales Conversions – drive the target audience to your website to convert them to sales or leverage social media ecommerce tools to enable purchase right in the platforms.
- Promotion/Offers – run a product/service promotion or special offer through social media advertising.
Once your campaign objective/goal is determined, you can determine the type of creative or content assets that need to be developed, and which tools you will need in order to develop them.
Trace the Path to Conversion
When planning a campaign, it can be easy to forget to look beyond the task at hand and consider the whole marketing strategy, including how each tactic affects the other. Unless you are making sales conversions within the social media platform, your target audience’s journey rarely begins and ends there. Social media users’ path to conversion will most likely transcend multiple marketing touchpoints, at the very least your website.
For example, you may launch your brand campaign through a series of LinkedIn posts that communicate your latest and greatest with sharp copy and eye-catching imagery. Your target audience will see it, like it, share it or click it – but then what?
When it comes to user behavior, you can never assume your audience will magically take the path or click where you want them to go. Spell it out for them – above the fold! When sending social media traffic to your website, make sure users can see and take the next step in the funnel upon arrival, including but not limited to:
- Contact you
- Make a purchase
- Download resources
- Read your blog
If you don’t think beyond the social media touchpoint, you could end up spending a lot of time, effort and money driving people to your website only to lose them again because you did not have proper calls to action (CTAs) to convert them.
Use What Works
It can be tempting to create shiny, new messaging and creative for your social media campaign, but if your existing content is attracting and engaging audience members, don’t stray too far from the path.
When working with your team or agency to create campaign content, make sure it features the best attributes from the social media posts that historically perform best on your pages. You can use that as a foundation to create amplified versions that promote your campaign.
Pro Tip: Learn how to evaluate your daily social media content performance and understand what’s resonating with your audience with these measurement and analysis best practices.
Know Your Audience
Beyond knowing what type of content your audience is looking for, it’s important to understand their typical engagement behavior. If you’re looking for your audience to take an action, make sure it’s a realistic one.
It’s become second nature for social media users to fill out forms or download resources, but there are still subsets of people who will only do the bare minimum no matter what you offer them. Not every social media user is an active “sharer,” in fact there are many who passively browse content without posting their own photos, comments, etc.
If your target audience consists of more passive social media users, they likely will like or click on posts, but rarely share or comment on anything. In this case, you’ll want to create a campaign that does not require too many actions before they receive their “carrot” or convert.
If you ask too much of your audience, especially without an equal incentive, your campaign will not perform well. Again, trace that path to conversion to be sure your audience’s journey is user-friendly and effective.
Leave Room (and Budget) for Changes
Marketing campaigns are rarely perfect, no matter how much time you spend planning and preparing. But that’s normal! With every campaign launched there is insight gained within the first couple weeks that will help you improve your execution.
We don’t recommend the “set it and forget it” route. Take the time to evaluate and make sure users are responding to your campaign, otherwise you’ll end up having spent your entire budget to achieve very few results.
Pro Tip: You can learn more about preparing your social media ad strategy, including campaign evaluation and refinement, here.
Setting some campaign budget aside for unexpected changes, optimizations or requirements is smart. This could include a few small creative adjustments or unexpected costs for tools, software or website/CRM functionality.
Conversely, you may find yourself presented with an unexpected opportunity. Perhaps one piece of creative is performing well above the others and you decide to shift all your remaining budget there to maximize the benefits of your audience’s attention and engagement.
Regardless, you will feel relieved that you planned for changes ahead of time instead having to find additional budget to cover those costs.
Apply Lessons Learned
Once your campaign is complete, you can finally do a thorough evaluation of your results and analytics to determine if your campaign performed well and achieved the desired objectives.
We understand the data can be overwhelming, but please don’t just look at the topline performance stats and walk away. Analyze the information available and ask yourself how it can help you create and implement a more effective campaign next time.
This evaluation can also enable you to set benchmark performance numbers for your brand’s campaigns, which can be used as a comparison for future initiatives. Having these stats will help you determine how much money you need to allocate in order to achieve desired results.
For example, you may discover your brand’s cost-per-result is higher, which means you may need a higher budget next time. Or perhaps it was lower than anticipated, which means you can afford to shift some dollars elsewhere.
Amidst the chaos of social media, data is power. Harness it and use it to create informed campaigns that will deliver more quality results.
If you’re looking for help in preparing your next campaign or could just use an “extra set of hands,” please give us a shout here or email me directly at email@example.com.