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7 steps to building your social media plan

2018-11-16T17:41:34+00:00

Social media is an effective tool for projects to engage with supporters, share your story, recruit support and demonstrate impact. Here are 7 steps to build and plan your social media when drumming up support for an event or project.

  1. Goals: what do you want to achieve?

Set a goal for your social media. What exactly do you want people to know or do?

Do you want to make noise about an upcoming event or are you using social media to gain support for your project? Is your plan for a short term aim or a longer-term goal?

  1. Get to now your audience/who you are talking to.

Firstly understand who you are trying to attract or speak to you? How old are they, where do they live, what do they do? Paint a picture of your audiences, their interests and how you would usually talk to them.

  1.  Which social media channels will you focus on using?

Which channels do your audience use? Will you use exactly the same content across all of them or does the content need to be tweaked?

Do you need to post more or less frequently on them? It’s better to do less and do them well than try and do them all get overwhelmed and give up or lose interest. This depends on where your audience is and how you want to use social media.

  1. Where can you get inspiration from?

What are the things that inspire you – it may be things you look at and love the way they write or capture a story, even if they are not directly related to your project. what are similar projects doing? We usually consider these to be competition – but they’re not. Think of this as a digital scrapbook that you dig into before doing any creative work.

Look up what similar projects or events are doing to share their story or get people to attend their event. Where have they posted? What kind of images have they used?

Newsletters: subscribe to organisation’s newsletters, its curated inspiration delivered straight to your inbox.

Podcasts: Love her podcast, can listen to when running or washing the dishes. I also love this account as I love her branding so I’ll check her account out for ideas on designing images and posters.

Friend’s feed: I love her images, the way she depicts ‘community’ without usual high five images. 

  1. Key themes and messages

What do you want people to know from what you tell them? Storytelling is key to engagement.

List out around 5 key messages that you want people to know about your event. Or list out 5 key topics you will cover on your social media that link in to your campaign.

These 5 messages in the image are great. It usually isn’t as short and punchy but that’s the aim.

Eg. Refill London Campaign

  1. Campaign against single-use plastic – Mission/what
  2. Stop use of plastic by removing need for plastic water bottles – solution/how
  3. Create a network of refill stations around London where businesses sign up to offer free water refills to anyone.
  4. Businesses can sign up as refill stations
  5. You can get involved by using a refill bottle, using the app to find the nearest refill station and sign up local businesses to become refill stations too. Always end with a ‘Call to action’.

Keep it simple, repeat the same simple message over and over so people can easily become your brand ambassadors.

  1. What kind of images, videos and hashtags will you use?

Will you use videos? How will you source them – create yourself, use third party content, free online?

We all know that images and videos are worth more than a thousand words.

When people hear information, they’re likely to remember only 10% of that information three days later. However, if a relevant image is paired with that same information, people retained 65% of the information three days later.

You could also use online sites that give you access to high quality free images such as: www.freeimages.com www.unsplash.com  www.pexels.com  www.wikimediacommons.com

Another great tool that helps you create great designs with little effort is called www.canva.com

Choose a memorable hashtag for your campaign. Hashtags – use catchy hashtags that people want to use and adapt to their own story. You may or may not use the name of your campaign or event as a hashtag. Be sure it is not too long as it could lead to tragic spelling mistakes or severe blunders: Susan Boyle’s launch disaster #susanalbumparty

  1. Scheduling and timings:

How often will you post? Can you set up some of those posts beforehand all at once to save time? This is a good point to think about what your budget and capacity?

What are the times and places where your audience will be most receptive? Sprout Social digs into the best times to post depending on your industry.

Use a scheduling tool like www.hootsuite.com to help you plan and write your posts one day a week and forget about it.

We’ve created this concise visual social media planner to help you think about each step, write down your plan and refer back to it.

About the Author:

Melanie Vella
I am dedicated to connecting my passion for social good projects, marketing and creative content to tell stories with impact. I am fuelled by my love of running, yoga, anything that involves water and the outdoors.