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What to expect when launching your company's social media presence

So your company has decided to invest in a social media campaign; now you’re six months in and aren’t sure if it’s working. Should you hang tight or call it quits?

In the first six months of a social media campaign a few things are happening:

Months One to Three: Your social media team is deciding which platforms will help you meet your business goals, strategizing around what content to create for your audiences, creating that content, sharing it with the digital world and adjusting as new insights are learned.

They might learn your audience really loves to see photos with people’s faces in them or maybe they prefer product images only—the beauty of social media is that it allows you to learn valuable information about your audience(s). You’re just beginning to collect that data in the first few months.

Months Four to Six: The next three months are when you can expect to get into the flow of your content creation. You know your audience fairly well by now, and it’s time to get even more creative with the ways you engage them. Six months in, you’re in full swing—your website clicks should be steadily increasing, people are engaging with your content and, if you’re a product company, are sharing their own images and tagging you in them. If you have an integrated PR and social media team (which you absolutely should), it might actually be time to start thinking about an influencer campaign to boost your following more quickly.

After knowing this and evaluating where your company is at, you should also keep these three things in mind:

  1. Social media is a long game. Most companies don’t gain 1,000 followers in the first month, or even the first three months, by having a social media presence alone—a concerted influencer and media relations effort and advertising strategy will drive the success of your social effort. However, if you are going the organic route and can only invest in a small social media effort to begin with, just make sure you are setting attainable goals when it comes to followers.

  2. Know what your goals are. Your goals shouldn’t just be to increase followers and “likes.” What do those followers and “likes” represent? Customers? A public you’d like to educate? Both? And what do you want them to do once they are there? Simply “like” your photos? Click through to your website? Buy a product? Share with their friends?

    These are all goals that should be thought about often, and the way you're utilizing each social media platform should map to meeting them.

  3. Eventually, you might need to back your organic campaign with an advertising budget. If you didn’t know, the average organic engagement rate for a Facebook page is around 1 to 2 percent these days. Yes, you read that right: 1 to 2 percent. If you didn’t begin your social campaign with an accompanying advertising campaign, you will eventually be faced with the reality that if you want to reach new people and grow your following, you’ll need to have both engines running simultaneously. This is especially true for B2C product companies.

Lastly, if you are still feeling uneasy about your social media effort, make sure you have the right staff member or partner in place. Here are a few indicators that, while the solution might not be to forgo social media entirely, you might need to consider a new leader of the charge:

  • The content being posted seems generic, unstrategic or off-brand;

  • You aren’t being provided with monthly goal reports or fresh ideas;

  • Your social media strategy isn’t mapping to your business strategy;

  • After more than six months, your following is “stale” and not increasing.

If you find yourself needing to set more realistic expectations or rethink your social strategy entirely, the good news is that you’re in the right place. Our team is proudly not a “yes” agency—we’ll tell you what will work, what won’t work and if we think you need to make some changes. We also will tell you if your company might not need to have a social presence at all.

Long story short: Hang in there. And, if you need some help, give us a shout.

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