Social Media Management for 2022
Tips and strategies for optimal online engagement
An effective social media plan makes online marketing. Specialized tools can streamline workflows and save time. But there is some planning that goes into setting up such programs, including choosing software and social platforms, goal setting and learning how to monitor and your plan’s impact and influence.
So, before allocating more time and financial resources to creating posts and ad sets, review these strategies for success.
First, decide which social media fits your business
Businesses choose social media platforms for a few basic reasons: Reach, audience demographics and the platform’s niche. You will want to match up your company goals and customer demographics with social media platforms. So, start by reviewing your business and marketing plan.
If you haven’t put a plan on paper, or it has been a while since you reviewed and refreshed it, this would be a good time to consider activating these business tools. My companion article will help you get started on planning strategically in our changing market.
What priorities does your marketing plan have? Is it bringing in new customers, generating leads or having your brand become better known? Next, identify and get to know your current and future customers- in social media, we call them your audience.
Finally, review social media platform demographics and note the differences. For example, Facebook has a broad reach, skews to a slightly older demographic, and prioritizes how much audiences engage with posts. Platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok are more visually oriented, with the latter two leaning toward younger demographics. Engaging about real-time events is Twitter’s niche, while LinkedIn appeals to working professionals that like to network.
Since each business is different, there is no “one-size fits all” social media platform answer. However, since Facebook also owns Instagram, WhatsApp, and Facebook Messenger, one can cover a wide reach with some powerful customer service perks, all within the top 5 social platforms in the world.
According to Statista, here are the top six social media platforms globally, and the number of monthly active users:
- Facebook (2.9 billion)
- YouTube (2.5 billion)
- WhatsApp (2 billion)
- Weixin/WeChat (1.2 billion)
- TikTok (1 billion)
- Facebook Messenger (988 million)
Takeaway: Know your audience and choose social platforms to match. It is better to do two platforms well than to spread your efforts and budget too thin. You can always add another platform later!
Social media management apps to consider
There are two routes to go in social media management. You can use tools included in the platform itself. Or you can use social media management apps.
Platform tools. Through the free Meta (formerly Facebook) Business Manager, you can create paid ad or image campaigns, schedule posts in advance, review analytics and more for Facebook and Instagram. You can deploy WhatsApp to put a portfolio of products in front of customers, and communicate through Messenger. More integrations are happening all the time, making Meta Business Manager a one-stop-shop for a decent social media presence for those starting out or on limited budgets. Learn more about Meta Business Manager here.
Social media management tools. Social media management tools make it easier for you to manage your social media posting, track marketing effectiveness, and review reports. The explosive growth of these smart schedulers has helped keep costs reasonable while expanding features. Here are some important features to look for when deciding on social media management tools for your business:
- How many social profiles you can manage at each price level. If you are managing social media for a small business, you may only need to engage with three or four social platforms. Large companies or agencies will want to engage with many more.
- Which platforms the scheduler tool connects with. Some of the most popular social management apps don’t connect with new platforms like TikTok. Make sure the tools you select can deliver scheduling to the platforms you need.
- How many users can access the account. Again, for small entities, one user may be enough. Large companies will need more access. Watch out—sometimes additional users are included in a plan tier, but sometimes plans are billed per user. Make sure to check this out when comparing plan costs.
- Optimal post time. Another top feature is schedulers that automatically pick the optimal time to post. Sometimes you can set this up within the schedulers, some schedulers do this automatically. Regardless, posting at optimal times is one of the best ways to increase engagement.
- Price. Once you decide how many profiles and users you need (now and in the future), your platforms and key desired features, you can do a price comparison between different schedulers. Note that some display prices as a monthly fee, available only when you pay annually. It is not recommended to get locked into an annual contract with a new app.
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Once you have your list narrowed down, take the top one or two for a test drive with a free trial. Here are the top social media management tools for 2022. These links take you directly to the plan features and pricing pages:
Inform yourself about analytics
As the chief decision maker, a savvy manager or owner will dig into data and understand analytics. Even if a company is fortunate enough to have a person, team or department managing their online presence, this data is a goldmine of information to drive decisions.
For example, Facebook’s algorithm prioritizes (meaning shows to more people)
posts with higher engagement (views, likes, clicks). You will want to view your social platform’s analytics to see when your audience is online and most active, and schedule your posts then.
You can also view how your competition is doing- how many posts they have done and what kind of response they are getting. Take a look at their high performing posts and see how your strategy can be adjusted.
Engagement boosting social marketing tips
Even if you have a small budget and limited time, there are easy strategies to boost engagement. The top one is to post consistently. If you choose not to use a social media management app, make a calendar reminder to post at least twice a week.
Don’t be salesy. People respond better to information than pitches. To ensure a balance, post at least two non-commercial posts for each one that mentions your company, product, or service. Examples of noncommercial post categories include:
- Useful information
- Community news
- Industry news
- Humor related to your industry
- Lifestyle related to your business
Never post without an image (except on Twitter), and post with a video whenever possible. Today’s smartphones have excellent resolution for online videos. If this is beyond your ability, make a slideshow video from still images.
Americans spent on average over 3.6 hours a day on social media in 2021. Putting the right message in front of the right audience at the right time will help you tap into this growing audience.