How to Formulate a Social Marketing Plan in 2014

(TA + IR + ME) X (KSN - B) = SMP

(Target Audience + Industry Research + Manageable Expectations) X (Knowledge of Social Networks - Budget) = Social Marketing Plan

Using this formula will help you create a marketing plan with a social perspective in 2014.

Target Audience (TA)

First you have to identify your target audience. Everyone is not a target audience.  Knowing your business, your services or your product will help you determine who your target audience is. Knowing your target audience is just the beginning but is critical to your business. Combine this with industry research and you are starting to make progress.

Industry Research (IR)

Knowing your industry will help you narrow down your target audience so you are more focused.  The more narrow your focus the more customers you will get, which is a necessity for every company. In order to gain industry knowledge you must first conduct some industry research.

You need to find out who the top competitors are in your industry, preferably local competitors, and what they are doing for marketing.  You must find out what they are doing online and offline,  What content are they publishing and where. This will help you be different and separate yourself from everyone else in your industry.

Manageable Expectations (ME)

Having manageable expectations seems to always be the most difficult.  Only because we want the world, now.  We have become a less patient society interested in the immediate results. Not a good thing for business.  Manageable expectations is a combination of self awareness, primarily of your strengths and weaknesses.

Know where you are strong so you can make them stronger.  Discover where you are weak so you can work on those slowly, over time.  This will help you know what you are capable of and create a plan reliant on your strengths.

Knowledge of Social Networks (KSN)

Take all of this and throw in a basic understanding of the social networks. You must know which social networks your target audience is active on and how to reach them. Knowing the language of the social network is crucial since each network is different. Having a basic knowledge will already put you ahead most companies.

A basic knowledge simply lays a foundation for you and allows you to use the social networks, but digging deeper is how you will truly be effective on each network. This does not happen overnight. It’s important to start slow, you gotta crawl before you walk.

Budget (B)

Knowing all this and taking your budget into consideration you are able to write your social marketing plan (SMP) for 2014. This will help you figure out if you can do your own marketing or if you can afford help.

Stay tuned to learn what should be included in your basic social marketing plan for 2014. We are giving away the farm on this one.

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