Usually in case of small businesses most of the tasks managed by the executive are either operational or tactical. But social media marketing projects are essentially non repetitive tasks which need to be addressed from a strategic stand point so as to leverage on the benefits. Each of these projects has a clear well defined task list with a clear end goal. Hence while working on the social media marketing strategy you would have to set up clear project objectives, goals while at the same time laying out the standard project process to be followed. Thus the Social Media Projects with focus on creating new posts is strategy based while the Social Media Operations will handle customer queries, complaints on the different social platforms.
Social media projects involve a two pronged approach -the first is to create different social accounts and attract visitors and followers to these accounts and the second step is to publish interesting content for your followers.
Setting up Social Media Accounts
There are many social media platforms to choose from, the approach for making the right decision is same as any project management process:
- The scope – How many platforms to target and which ones to target?
- Timelines – How much time to be allotted for setting up? How much time to be allotted for managing? How much should be the optimum response time to customers?
- Project Cost – What should be the social media project budget? Should the publishing be handled in-house or should it be outsourced? Should social media monitoring tools be purchased or should the free tools be used?
- Quality – Which are the best social media platforms that meet your project objectives, your business?
- Communication – What are the communication channels to get your employees and customers on to the social media accounts? What is the promotion plan?
- Project Risks – What are the potential risks? What are the pitfalls to avoid?
- Project Team – Whether to have a diversified team from different departments taking care of the project or should there be a dedicated team? Who should comprise the team?
Social Media Content Creation
For successful creation of content which grabs the reader’s attention and prompts them to act, it is important keep the focus on the customer. The goal of the content is to engage the customer and build the relationship. For creating compelling content once again project management comes to the rescue.
- Initiation Phase: This involves brainstorming, create a list of potential content topics for the project, collate connecting images, record customer testimonials, product offers etc. This phase helps in prioritizing the messages and coming up with the project schedule depending on seasonal promotions, holidays etc.
- Planning Phase: Once the prioritized content idea list is ready, the content elements for each need to be planned. The videos, locations, employee photo shoots etc. all need to be planned. The details of the same to be shared with the project stakeholders. Content quality needs to be checked, facts verified and most importantly content needs to be written on schedule.
- Execution Phase: This is a simple phase once your social media strategy is in place. It essentially involves publishing the content/ message.
- Project Control: As for any project, measuring and monitoring is essential for social media marketing too. It is important to define both success and failure so as to measure the results against this.
- Project closure: Any project has a beginning and an end. Social media campaigns too are driven over specific periods so as to review the progress against the project goals. In this phase the content quality in terms of gaining customer eyeball needs to be reviewed. The lessons learnt need to be collated and used in the subsequent projects.
This subject has been dealt in greater detail by by Rick Dragon in his article where he talks about using Agile Programming for Social Media Projects.