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THE TEN STEP

SOCIAL MEDIA
STRATEGY
BLUEPRINT
A Practical Toolkit
For Planning,
Executing & Measuring
An Impactful
Social Media & Content
Marketing Strategy.
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
www.tentsocial.com
INTRODUCTION
Whether you are a small business owner trying to make sense of this social media thing, a
Millennial who has been tasked with figuring out your companys social media strategy or are
already a seasoned vet with social media it is very likely you are overwhelmed from managing
it to some degree.
The biggest problem that leads to endless confusion in social media is that most people and
organizations have no clue where to start. Thats why weve created a practical guide, packed
with tips, tools and resources, that will save you tons of time and energy, because youll start
off knowing which way to go instead of wandering aimlessly through the clutter.
How To Use This Blueprint
This is not your ordinary eBook that you should simply skim through and never look at again.
This Blueprint was made specifically to help you plan your social media & online content
marketing strategy from start to finish. ln the end you will be left with a comprehensive plan
that is sure to impress upper management or, if you run your own ship, it will be your own
personal roadmap for social media success. Each step is split into three sections: 1) an
introduction and rationalization for that step, 2) practical tips for that step and 3) a selection of
invaluable resources and tools to help you get the job done.
Before you begin, download our FREE Social Media Strategy Blueprint Template that works
alongside this eBook. We currently offer it in EXCEL form, but stay tuned for new collaborative
versions coming soon, including Google Docs, Powerpoint and more!
?
About TentSocial Social Content Marketing Agency
We are a digital marketing agency that specializes in the strategic planning,
creation and ongoing management of social media and content marketing. We eat,
sleep and breathe what we call social content, which is online content that is
created with the intention of attracting prospects and sharing across the social
web. Swing on by www.tentsocial.com - wed love to connect!
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
www.tentsocial.com
THE TEN STEP SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY BLUEPRINT | INTRODUCTION
C|eated oy Jeff Be|ezny. Fo0nde| of 7entSoc|a|
1
THE TEN STEPS
Step One:
The Destination
Step Two:
Know Your Audience
Step Three:
Your Story
Step Four:
The Landscape
Step Five:
Source of Growth
Step Six:
Content Mix
Step 7:
Media Mix
Step 8:
Platform Mix
Step 9:
Timing Mix
Step 10:
Metrics Mix
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Click step to jump to section.
STEP ONE
THE DESTINATION
STEP ONE: THE DESTINATION
The business objective will lay down a foundation for your marketing and social media cam-
paigns. It is your compass to help guide you in the right direction. Think of it in terms of driving
somewhere your objective is normally to get to a destination. If you find out you are going the
wrong way then you immediately know that you need to change course. If you dont have a
business objective, then you could be driving for days, weeks or months and never even know
if you are going in the right direction!
On the following page youll find four quick tips to help you write an effective business objec-
tive that will help you lay down a solid foundation to move forward with not only your
marketing and social media activity, but your business in general.
The first step in the 10-step Social Media Strategy Blueprint is
The Destination" or your business objectives.
For many, this step may seem obvious, but it is far too
often overlooked. Most people end up doing social
media with no real rhyme or reason, often seeming
very busy while not actually accomplishing anything.
Every campaign, big or small must have an objective.
Even if that objective is relatively loose and doesnt
have many hard metrics against it, you must have one
otherwise you are pretty much just wasting your time
playing on Facebook all day.
If you dont know where you are going,
youll end up someplace else.
Yogi Berra
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2
Where do you see yourself in 1-2 years? What will your business or brand look
like? Hopefully, it looks different from where you are now or at least you are
maintaining a strong position if you expect significant competition to
swoop in.
IMPORTANT: If you are in it for a quick buck, DO NOT use social media.
Social media is not the correct tool if youd like to drive massive traffic in a very
short period of time and then head for the hills with your cash. You need to be
committed to your customers in the long term to see the fruits of social media.
Make It Medium To Long Term: 12-18 mths
An objective without any associated numbers is very difficult to
measure. Create goals that reference measures like dollar sales, unit
sales, products launched, new clients/customers, repeat
customers, etc. Furthermore, always associate a timeframe to your
goal, otherwise you will never know if you actually accomplished it. Try
and come up with at least two objectives - one financial and one non-
financial. Depending on the nature of your financial and non-financial
objectives, your marketing and social media strategy could be very
different - so think carefully.
Make It measurable: Use Numbers When Possible
3
There is no point in coming up with an outrageous business objective
that you will never be able to accomplish or measure. The business
objectives should be realistic and allow you to track progress
forward. Even little steps towards a business goal can do amazing
things for team morale and motivation.
Be Realistic
FOUR TIPS FOR GOAL SETTING
5
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Think about it but dont overthink it. Set a target and go for it. You can
always change your objective and you likely will as you progress.
The best business objectives are ones that you can remember and
repeat to yourself and team to keep everyone on track. If you cant
memorize it quickly, it is too complicated.
Keep It Short & Simple
FOUR TIPS FOR GOAL SETTING
6
KISS
TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and record your financial and
non-financial objectives.
Questions to ask yourself when thinking about objectives:
Financial:
What is your monthly/quarterly/annual revenue target 1 year from now?
What is your targeted $ share of market in 6-12 months?
How many products do you want to sell 1 year from now?
How many new clients/customers with what average revenue do you expect 18 months from now?
What $ sales % growth (year on year) would you like to reach in 12 months
Non-Financial:
When is the drop-dead date for that new product launch?
What would you like the internal structure of the company to look like in 12 months?
Which new geographic markets would you like to make initial sales in 2 years from now?
Learn how TentSocia| can help you out
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THE TEN STEP SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY BLUEPRINT | STEP ONE
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STEP TWO
KNOW YOUR
AUDIENCE
STEP TWO: KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
When people talk, listen completely.
Most people never listen.
Ernest Hemingway
The second step of the 10 Step Social Media Blueprint is all about
identifying and truly getting to know your audience (or target
marketj. I cant stress enough the importance of this step.
Everything that comes after this will be built on what you know
and want to learn about your audience.
There are many schools of thought on how to best
evaluate and understand your target market. None are
without limitations, but I prefer to keep it simple - since
we know that if isn't simple, it doesn't get done. Thus, I
break it down into another 3 steps: Paint a Quick Pic-
ture, Dig into the Facts and Reveal the Insights
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HOW TO GET TO KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
1
2
One of the easiest ways to understand your market is to STOP talking about
them in theoretical terms and start drawing a literal picture - or creating a
persona. First, work from your gut and picture one of your customers in
your mind and then write down one sentence, or a few words, to describe
her (or him). Then, write down her name (or a representative name). Giving
the 'persona' a name will help make them real and ensure that your market-
ing efforts are personal instead of corporate, sterile garbage. Finally, pop into
Google Images or Shutterstock.com and see if you can find an actual photo-
graph to represent this persona. Save the picture, print it up, do whatever it
takes to engrain this person in your mind.
Paint A Quick Picture
This is the stage where you get to put your 'gut' away for a bit and focus on
cold, hard facts. It is worth spending some time mining this information on
the web, especially as you think about a social media strategy, as you will
need to learn about how your target audience behaves online. To start, list
everything you can about your target audience that you know to be true.
This might include demographics (age, sex, geography, family size, average
income), life-stage (student, young professional, new parent, retired, etc),
career, lifestyle and hobbies.
If you're working in B2B, think about industry, size of company (small/medium
business vs enterprise), average revenue, role in company (marketing manager,
CEO, account executive etc) location, business phase (ie: start-up vs mature).
You may have heard comments in-person from you customers, but the beauty
of the internet today is that it is very easy (and very freej to do some of that
listening yourself online. Understanding what is already being said about your
industry and product/service is crucial to building an effective social media
strategy.
Dig Into The Facts
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HOW TO GET TO KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
3
Finally, to truly connect with your audience you need to do more than
simply identify who they are and what they do. You need to identify how
they feel and why your product or service might actually be useful for them.
This is by far the most difficult step, but is also the difference between great
marketing that connects you deeply with your customers and lame market-
ing that is, well... lame.
Consumer/customer insights are about understanding how your 'persona'
feels about a particular problem that your product or service could potentially
solve. Try to really get in the head of your customer and feel what they might be
feeling. Then, in the first person state the issue, need or desire that you (your
audience) has that your product or service provides a solution for. As you do
this, try not to mention your brand or product. The reason there is so much bad
advertising out there is because marketers don't think enough about true emo-
tional insights, rather they focus on the product itself. To develop strong insights,
ask yourself the below questions. To help out, I have provided Brand X razors as an example:
Example Product: Brand X Razors
1. What rational need or desire does my product or service fill?
(ie: helps PERSONA X effectively cut the hair off their faces.)
2. What emotional need or desire does my product or service fill?
(ie: helps 'PERSONA X' look and feel good and have confidence as he starts his day)
I know this is a heavy step, but it is so critical to the success of your business, not just from a market-
ing point of view, but from a deep understanding of the value that your product or service provides for
your customers.
If you can't come up with a strong insight in relation to your audience, then maybe your product or
service isn't serving the correct need. So sit down and give it a go... think Mel Gibson in What
Women Want and truly try and understand your market. If you dont get them you cant talk to them
and if you cant talk to them, you cant sell to them, and if you can't sell to them -- well, you get the
picture.
Reveal The Insights
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TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and record detailed information about
your target personas.
Online Tools To Help You Learn About Your Customer:
Google Alerts (FREE!)
Pick 5-6 very specific words about your brand and industry and set up daily email alerts as
these words are mentioned in blogs, news articles and more.
Twitter Keyword Search (FREE!)
Find out what people are saying about your brand, right now. Simply type your brand, industry
keywords into Twitter Search and you will see the results show up instantly.
Google Insights for Search (FREE!)
Search forms the foundation of the web and you can learn a lot about what your audience
might be searching for (and in what volume) by plugging your brand name and some
competitor keywords into this tool.
Radian6 or Sysomos ($$$)
If you would like to really dive in and do some serious research about your brand or category over a
longer period of time, deep-listening tools like Radian6 or Sysomos do a great job. These tools will
help you identify broader trends over time and also help to compartmentalize and organize the vast
amount of data so you can draw out deeper insights.
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
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THE TEN STEP SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY BLUEPRINT | STEP TWO
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STEP THREE
YOUR STORY
Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make,
but about the stories you tell.
Seth Godin
STEP THREE: YOUR STORY
The third step in the 10-step Social Media Strategy Blueprint,
is about defining what makes your brand/offering unique, or
what I like to call - 'Your Story.'
Why Develop A Story?
The goal of developing a story is to gain a deeper
understanding of what makes your brand and product
unique. Keeping focused on what makes your brand
unique will also align your business with sustainability
in the market (aka. ongoing $$$).
Ask yourself, why would anyone buy your product or
service versus the competition or versus not purchasing
anything at all? Every marketer needs to be able to rattle this
off in seconds if someone asks. The problem is, most cannot.
Whatever the reason(s), whether it be better technology, nicer fea-
tures, stronger heritage, more convenient location, cheaper, lighter, better
personal touch, more reliable, more durable etc., you need to define at least one
that you can hang your hat on. If there really is nothing - then you need to do some-
thing very quickly to change that, whether it be through new product development or differen-
tiated marketing, otherwise you will get left behind, it is only a matter of time.
To develop your story, you need to create a full picture of your brand, which involves where
you've been, what you do and where you want to go. This begins at the purely rational and
moves into emotional and aspirational. Every brand will sit at different places in this
spectrum, but in the majority of cases, you will want to continue to deepen the emotional
connection people have with your brand, ultimately leading to stronger loyalty and love for
your brand. And don't we all want that?
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HOW TO DEVELOP YOUR STORY
1
2
If you have a well-established brand, there is likely a long history of key events
that have helped it get to where it is today. Don't walk away from the equity
of a strong heritage. If you are an entrepreneur with a new brand, think
about your own history and experience. Everyone has their own unique story
in life, take advantage of this and weave it into your brand story.
What Is The History Of Your Brand?
Not much explanation needed here. What is the actual product or service
that you provide? Be sure to highlight the different types of products and
services you offer along with any key features.
What Do You Physically Sell?
3
What is the benefit of your product or service? As discussed in Step 2, try and
think about this from both a rational and emotional point of view. Emotional
benefits often provide much better inspiration for great stories.
What Benefit Do You Sell?
4
From the history, features and benefits identified in the previous steps, which
are unique to your brand? You might have better technology than a com-
petitor, you might have a better known and trusted brand than others.
Narrow it down and select the features/attributes/benefits that make your
brand awesome.
What Makes Your Brand Unique?
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HOW TO DEVELOP YOUR STORY
5
6
To create a truly great and beloved brand, you need to stand for and reach for
something bigger. This should be aspirational and keep you striving to be
better (ie: points you in the right direction, but might always be just out of
reach). The simpler and more concise you make this, the better. For
example, Google's is "Don't be Evil" along with a mission to organize and
provide access to the world's information. Whatever you write down, make
sure it inspires you, the people on your team and your customers.
What Does Your Brand Aspire To?
Finally, define the tone of your brand as though it is a person, instead of a
faceless robot. This is crucial for all of your communications, but especially
important in social media as you or someone in your company will be
interacting with people online on a daily basis. Try and use very descrip-
tive adjectives as though you are describing someone that you know.
Whats Your Brand Personality?
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TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and record detailed information about
the key elements that make up your brands story.
Use Classical Storytelling Tools, Like The Story Arc:
The history of your brand has likely had several full story arcs that you can tell. Focus on several
little stories and experiences that will form the foundation for your broader brand story.
Rising Action
Climax
Falling Action
Exposition Denouement
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STEP FOUR
THE LANDSCAPE
Know your enemy & know yourself and you can
fight a hundred battles without disaster.
Sun Tzu
STEP FOUR: THE LANDSCAPE
A lot can be learned from simply reviewing the activity (or lack
thereof) of the competition and others in your industry. By
understanding the activities that are already occurring online,
in relation to your business and industry, you can effec-
tively leverage ideas that are already working and/or
identify gaps in activation that you can take advantage
of.
Depending on the industry you are in, there are two
main groups that you should spend some time review-
ing, in-depth. The first is the competition, both big
players and small players, and the second are regulatory
bodies.
Auditing the competition can be a timely task, but I promise you
that opportunities will reveal themselves through this process that
youd likely never think of if you skip it. So, take the time and invest in this step, it
will save you a lot of time and make sure you are heading in the right direction as
you develop your strategy in later steps.
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HOW TO GET TO KOW YOUR LANDSCAPE
1
2
List 2-3 competitors and write down a few sentences about them off the top of
your head, without doing any research. Answer the following questions:
What do they do well? What are they weaker at? What is some recent
marketing/product activity that theyve been doing? This summary should
give you a quick snapshot of who your competitors are and their key
marketing activity.
Define The Competition
Pick 4 or 5 phrases or keywords that your customers might search online in
relation to your industry. These should include general keywords as well as
more specific ones. For example, Carribean resorts (general) vs dive
resorts in the Dominican Republic (very specific). Perform several searches
and write down anything that you note of interest. Which com-pany
dominates search for different keyword phrases? Which do you domi-nate,
if any?
Search Media Audit
3
Of the competitors you chose, visit their websites and look for social links.
These links often appear in the top right or in the footer as small Facebook,
Twitter and Youtube icons. Using our free Excel social media strategy
template, record each competitors name and copy the links to all of their
social media properties. Scroll through the activity and write down a few
notes about anything that is of interest. Look specifically for things like,
number of followers, frequency of post, number of comments/
engagement, nature of content being posted, plus any specific
promotional campaigns they may be doing.
Social Med|a Audit
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HOW TO GET TO KNOW YOUR LANDSCAPE
Many industries are very highly regulated, such as Healthcare and Financial
Services, which can dramatically impact the approach required when lever-
aging social media. In most cases, social media can play a key role in
strengthening the bond between yourself and industry bodies, if properly
leveraged. In highly regulated industries, it is important to ensure you have
a good handle on what you can and cannot do within the social media
environment. Dont let this scare you away from leveraging social media though,
it just might require you to add an additional step of review/approval or
moderation into your process.
Evaluate Regulatory Opportunities & Limitations 4
Once you've taken a comprehensive survey of yourself, the landscape in which
you exist and you have a good understanding of your business objective,
take an opportunity to write down 3-4 of the biggest things that are going
to stand in your way (key issues) as you reach for your objectives. The
best way to reach a goal is to have a strong understanding of what you
need to overcome to get there. Examples of common barriers include: strong
competition, lack of awareness, low trust and credibility, low engage-ment
category, etc.
Barriers & Key Issues
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TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and map out the key activity of your compe-
tition and industry bodies.
Many of the online resources used in Step 2: Know Your Audience, can also
be used here to better understand your competition. So, start with them.
Google Alerts (FREE!)
Pick 5-6 very specific words to your brand and industry and set up daily email alerts as
these words are mentioned in blogs, news articles and more.
Twitter Keyword Search (FREE!)
Find out what people are saying about your brand, right now. Simply type your brand, industry keywords
into Twitter Search and you will see the results show up instantly.
Google Insights for Search (FREE!)
'Search' forms the foundation of the web and you can learn a lot about what your audience might
be searching for, and in what volume, by plugging your bran name and some competitor keywords
into this tool.
Radian6 or Sysomos ($$$)
If you would like to really dive in and do some serious research about your brand or category over a
longer period of time, deep-listening tools like Radian6 or Sysomos do a great job. These tools will
help you identify broader trends over time and also help to compartmentalize and organize the vast
amount of data so you can draw out deeper insights.
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
THE TEN STEP SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY BLUEPRINT | STEP FOUR
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STEP FIVE
SOURCE OF
GROWTH
Move fast and break things. Unless you are breaking stuff,
you are not moving fast enough.
Mark Zuckerberg
STEP FIVE: SOURCE OF GROWTH
Step 5 is the final foundational step of creating a social media
strategy and brings us to defining your source of growth. In
most cases, the primary objective of a business is to grow in
some manner. Depending on the maturity and category in
which the business exists, there are a few different ways
in which growth can occur. Simplistically, we are going
to break down growth into 3 sources from a marketing
point of view. They are: make the pie bigger, steal
some pie and spend more on pie and pie related items
So, you may be saying, Pie? What are you talking
about? Allow me to elaborate with another example: If
you sell running shoes, there are 3 ways for you to
grow your revenue.
They are:
1. Convince people who didnt previously buy running shoes, to buy running shoes
(Example: Get people who only bought basketball shoes to try running shoes as well)
aka. make the pie bigger
2. Convince people to buy YOUR running shoes instead of your competitions
(Example: Switch Addidas loyalists to Nike) aka. Steal some pie
3. Convince people who are already buying your running shoes to spend more on shoes
and complementary products
(ex: twice a year instead of once a year and/or to also buy a pair of socks and a t-shirt along with
the shoes). aka. Spend more on pie and pie related items
Defining your source of growth will allow you to determine where you should focus your com-
munications as you drive towards your business objective.
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HOW TO DEFINE YOUR SOURCE OF GROWTH
1
2
If you operate in a relatively new industry or category, your primary challenge
does not lie in beating the competition, rather it is more about convincing
your audience, in general, that the product or service that you offer is of
value. As this new category grows, your business will also grow propor-
tionally with the category as long as you have appropriate awareness and
an equivalent product or service to the rest of the industry.
Make The Pie Bigger
If you operate in a mature industry, such as restaurants or hotels, your problem
does not lie in convincing people that they need to eat or need a place to
stay, rather it is convincing people to eat at your restaurant or stay at your
hotel versus the one across the street. In other words, you need to steal
customers from the competition.
Steal Some Pie
3
Finally, this source of growth is likely something that all businesses will
strive for, but it is important that it is prioritized accordingly with the other
two sources of growth. Focusing on this source of growth essentially
means that you want to increase the dollar value of each of your custom-
ers. This might be by trading customers up to a more expensive product
or service or selling complementary products alongside your regular sales.
Spend More On Pie & Other Related Items
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TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and prioritize the different sources of
growth for your business.
Social Content Tip #1
If making the pie bigger is your primary source of growth, then the content that you create should
focus less on differentiation and more on education to bring more people into the category.
Social Content Tip #2
If stealing some pie is your number one focus, social content that is created must have elements that
differentiate you from your competition and demonstrates unique benefits.
Social Content Tip #3
If upselling customers is defined as an important source of growth for your business, then content that
showcases these complementary products or services must be present in some form in your social
content.
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
THE TEN STEP SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY BLUEPRINT | STEP FIVE
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STEP SIX
SOCIAL CONTENT
MIX
It has been my observation that most people get ahead
during the time that others waste.
Henry Ford
STEP SIX: SOCIAL CONTENT MIX
Step 6 is all about defining the type of social content that will be
created. Many brands and businesses jump onto Facebook or
Twitter without thinking about or putting any planning against
the type of content that will be distributed within the com-
munity. This leads to two things: A lot of content with no
purpose & a lot of wasted time and resource.
At the heart of your Social Content Mix is Your Story.
This should serve as inspiration for an ongoing narra-
tive of content for your communities. A social content
mix is made up of several content groups that will form
the foundation of the type of content that will be featured
in your communities. Each one of these content groups
has very specific objectives associated with them, so that
with each piece of content that is being pushed out into social
media, you are being driven closer to reaching your business goals.
Before beginning to think about what content you might post within social media
communities, you need to define content in terms of different phases within the
customer purchase funnel.
Split your content into 4 different buckets, as follows:
1. Social Content that drives Awa|eness & 7|0st
2. Social Content that drives Engagement & Unde|stand|ng
3. Social Content that drives Conve|s|on & Sa|es
4. Social Content that O0t|eac|es, Engages & Resoonds
On the following pages we will look in-depth at each of these types of content.
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HOW TO DEVELOP A CONTENT MIX
1
Every social media community needs content that will draw the audience in. I
call this puppy and baby content (people always love it and share it). This
is social content that will engage the widest audience possible, within your
target market. This can be content related to current events, industry
news, or other fun, engaging content. Keep in mind, there MUST be a link
between this content and your brand/business. If you cant draw a line
between the content you feature and your business, dont post it as it will not
actually benefit you in the long term. Paid social media advertising can also fall
into this bucket.
Social Content That Drives Awareness & Trust
2
This type of content is more inwardly focused than the first type of social
content. It is an opportunity for you to educate your audience on your
product and services or on aspects related to the offering, if it is complex
and requires education. With a better understanding what you offer,
prospects are more likely to move towards conversion. This is often the
stage in which prospects are comparing your product or service with
others.
Social Content That Drives Engagement & Understanding
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HOW TO DEVELOP A CONTENT MIX
3
This third type of content is entirely inwardly focused and an opportunity
to showcase specific products/services and promotions. This is ultimately
where you are trying to drive everyone to. In many cases, people are
indeed looking for this type of contentjust not all the time.
Social Content That Drives Conversation & Sales
4
The final type of content to consider is how you will reach out proactively to
fans as well as respond to comments and questions within the social media
communities. Will customer service be an objective within your communi-
ties? Do you need to create accounts that exclusively offer customer
service? Or can it be served as part of another broader community? Also,
what is your plan for responding to posts, comments and questions within
your communities? What will be the tone? How often will you respond?
Social Content That Outreaches, Engages & Responds
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
THE TEN STEP SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY BLUEPRINT | STEP SIX
Within each of the above types of content, create 2-3 different content groups. Each of these content
groups should be unique and capture several sub-types of content within them. These content groups
will form the foundation for all social content moving forward.
29
SALE
Q: ?
A:
TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and record the different categories of con-
tent you will create in your communities.
Common Content Types: Awareness & Trust
Examples: Curated industry links, seasonal/current event content related to your industry, content that
shows the personality/human side of your company.
Common Content Types: Engagement & Understanding
Examples: Photos of product, explainer videos, comparison charts versus the competition,
special features.
Common Content Types: Conversion & Sales
Examples: Coupons and promotions, sales consultations, product demos.
Common Content Types: Outreaches engages or responds
Examples: Responding to questions, retweeting, @replying, reaching out to prospects, following
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series 1
THE TEN STEP SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY BLUEPRINT | STEP SIX
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30
STEP SEVEN
MEDIA MIX
It is better to create than to learn!
Creating is the essence of life.
Julius Caesar
STEP SEVEN: MEDIA MIX
After determining what categories of content you will create, you
need to define the nature of this content and in which media it
will be used. I call this step the 'media mix.' To begin, it is
helpful to think of your content in terms of the 3 (or 6) C's.
They are:
1. Create
2. Curate
3. Contribute, Comment & Care
Within each of these 'C's' you need to decide which
media you will engage in. Will you be creating articles,
taking photos or videos, writing eBooks and/or making presenta-
tions? Will you curate photos? Will you comment on videos,
blogs or social posts? While your strategy will likely change
over time, it is helpful to define where you would like to focus as
this will help you to be much more efficient with your time and resources.
Before move on, download our Social Media Strategy Template (EXCEL) to help you docu-
ment the nature of your content marketing.
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HOW TO DEFINE YOUR MEDIA MIX
1
2
This category of content is certainly the most difficult and resource intensive,
but also the most rewarding as it normally provides true, targeted value for
your fans that can be shared and ultimately point back to you for days,
weeks, months and years in the future. What type of content are you
going to create? Do NOT go overboard and try and create several different
types of content as with each different type of media comes new chal-
lenges.
Create
The second type of content is that which you curate. This type of content is
very important for three reasons:
1. It will save you an incredible amount of time and resources
2. It will open up doors for conversation in your industry
3. It will help improve your own credibility.
Curate things that are interesting to you, in relation to your field, and they will
likely also be interesting to people in your industry. When you do this, always
provide credit, whether it be by retweeting, or providing an active link reference
in your Facebook post. When you share content from other people it demon-
strates a balanced perspective and that you do more than simply self-promote all
of the time. You of course should not curate exclusively as this type of content
works much more effectively for engagement and credibility building than for
conversion.
Curate
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HOW TO DEFINE YOUR MEDIA MIX
3
Finally, to take full advantage of social media, you MUST act like a human
being who actually cares. This is often a type of content that companies
overlook, because it is not easy to plan and it constantly changes depend-
ing on the situation.
First let's take a look at contributing and commenting. As an expert in your industry,
this is your opportunity to show people that you know your stuff. If people see that you have an
interesting perspective, your credibility will improve and often prospects might follow a
comment you made on a Facebook post or blog back to your own website. Choose a selection of
industry websites, social profiles and blogs that you can check into on a regular basis. Make a habit
of providing your perspective on other people's posts - you'll be amazed at the connections you
will start making.
Secondly, you absolutely need to 'care' in your social media communities. Social media is a great
place to provide customer service and you cannot lose sight of that. Whether it be a question, com-
ment or complaint - always respond to people. Show them that there is a person behind the brand.
You will be amazed at how far this can go.
Contribute, Comment & Care
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TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and define what type of content you are
going Create, Curate and Contribute.
Content Creation Tip:
If you don't have the resources in-house for content creation, consider bringing on an agency
that specializes in social content creation to help alleviate the load. TentSocial has a talented
team of content creators ready to help you out, if needed. Click here to learn more.
Content Curation Tip:
There are several great news aggregators and alerts to keep you connected to your industry.
The best of which includes Google Alerts, mobile readers such as ZITE and FLIPBOARD or
GOOGLE CURRENTS, plus leading blogs within your industry. Learn what they are and
follow them.
Commenting & Caring Tip:
As you interact with your fans, remember that they are people. While there are many different
best practices for how to speak with people on social media, as long as you interact with them
in a similar way as you would in person (timely, genuine and polite), then you should be fine.
Whos Responsible for Content?
Defining a strategy for the types of content you want to create is all good, but make sure that
as you move through this process, you assign different resources to the tasks of Creation,
Curation and Contributing, Commenting & Caring. This should likely be a group of people to
help alleviate the content load. Normally, it is a combination of people from the marketing
team, cross-functional partners, senior leadership and agencies.
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
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35
STEP EIGHT
PLATFORM MIX
LinkedIn is for the people you know.
Facebook is for the people you used to know.
Twitter is for people you want to know
Source Unknown
STEP EIGHT: PLATFORM MIX
From a content point of view, we've covered what content will
be used Step 6, how it will be created, curated or commented
on Step 7 and now need to define 'where' it will be used. Most
people take this step as Step 1 of creating a social media plan.
Ever heard anyone say, "Let's get a Facebook
page!", without ever considering what the implications
are for the business, what type of content will be fea-
tured and why it will actually be useful?
There are several different options for platforms out
there that will appeal to you depending on the business
you are in. As a general rule of thumb, regardless of
whether you are B2B or B2C, start with a blog (see reasons
below). From there, if you are B2C, Facebook is next and if
your are B2B - go with LinkedIN. After that, I recommend
incorporating Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, TripAdvisor, Google+ and
Yelp as additions, depending on your resources and industry.
On the following pages, see a quick rundown on the top social media platforms and why they
might be valuable for you. Before taking a look, download our FREE Social Media Strategy
Template (EXCEL) so that you can record the platforms you would like to focus on and most
importantly, 'WHY' you are investing there.
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AN OVERVIEW OF SOCIAL PLATFORMS
Blog
Many don't think immediately of a blog when they are thinking of social
platforms, but this should actually be where you start as this is the ONLY
major social media asset that you can actually own. A blog on your web-
site will serve as the foundation for all content that you create and
ultimately will be the asset that drives long term success for your business
from an organic traffic point of view. Social media platforms like Facebook,
Twitter and YouTube are really just rented space on someone else's land. This
doesn't mean they are not incredibly important, it just means you always need a
place where you are investing in the long term as well. The blog on your website
is just that. Each dollar that you put against quality content on your blog will see
return for weeks, months and years to come.
I'm not going to do a robust review of blogging/content management platforms in
this post, but some of the top ones include, Wordpress, Blogger and Joomla or
for full marketing management platforms that include blogging modules, look to
options like HubSpot, Marketo or Eloqua.
.
Facebook
You can't argue with the dominance of this platform from a pure reach and
penetration point of view. If you want to reach the widest segment of the
population, Facebook is going to be your 'go-to', especially when it relates
to B2C.
Key Benefits:
The go-to bet for B2C
Widest reaching social platform
Highly sophisticated advertising platform
Robust platform for businesses with excellent analytics & management tools
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AN OVERVIEW OF SOCIAL PLATFORMS
LinkedIn
LinkedIN has had significant momentum over recent months and has been
crowned the champion for lead generation amongst B2B businesses over
any other social network. Approach this platform very differently from
Facebook. It is all about 1 to 1 relationships and leveraging the power of
personal networks in collaboration with a business page.
Key Benefits:
The go-to network for B2B
Highly targeted advertising platform for professional firms
Business mindset versus entertainment mindset
Robust tool-set for leveraging social media across marketing and HR
Twitter
I recommend every company who is willing to invest in social, to invest in
Twitter. Think of it as your own private news channel. If you have some-
thing to say and you want to say it quickly, Twitter is by far the best
choice. What is perhaps of biggest risk, is NOT having a Twitter account.
There are so many conversations happening in the 'twittersphere' these
days on pretty much every topic and if a crisis hits and you don't have a
platform to speak from and rectify the situation, the crisis will only get worse.
Key Benefits:
Your own private news channel where you control the message
very wide reach with narrow niches
The best line of defense in a crisis
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AN OVERVIEW OF SOCIAL PLATFORMS
YouTube
YouTube is the second biggest search engine in the world and if you create
content to connect with your prospects, fans and customers on this plat-
form - you will almost certainly gain increased visibility within the industry
that you operate. The web is becoming increasingly visual and media like
video and photos will only become more important in the future. Don't
worry if you can't go for high-production value, most people are more
interested in quality information.
Key Benefits:
Huge targeted reach as the second biggest search engine
Perfect for businesses that need to visually explain their products/services
The web is getting more visual & less text-based, so embrace more photos & videos
Pinterest
One of the newest kids on the block is Pinterest. As mentioned above, the
web is becoming increasingly visual and the explosive growth of Pinterest
is a great example of that. Pinterest will be of most value to those that
have several products or services that can be shown using photos. These
are not the only ones that can have success using Pinterest though. This
platform allows you to express yourself and your business using pictures
instead of words, which is often easier for people to do than to try and eloquently
write it.
Key Benefits:
Perfect for businesses that need to show many products & services
Proliferates your products/services visually through your industry
The future of web is more visual than text-based, so jump on it
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AN OVERVIEW OF SOCIAL PLATFORMS
Google+
There is much debate about the value of Google+ as engagement remains
relatively low, even though user base is huge. I'm a firm believer in
Google+, but you can't think of it in the exact same way as Facebook and
LinkedIN. Think of it as a backbone to the Google services. Google is the
biggest search engine in the world and its services are used by millions
of people everyday, including Gmail, Google Maps, YouTube, Google Drive and
Android on mobile. Ignoring Google+ is like ignoring all of these platforms. If you are getting into
social media, create a Google+ account for your business, because at the very least it is going to act
as a social listing for Google amongst all of the other services. Depending on your industry, you may
find that you really, really love Google+ as it certainly has some interesting perks - including Google+
hangouts and Google Drive/Docs as an internal social network.
Key Benefits:
Google is the biggest force on the web. Don't ignore Google
Google+ connects with many great Google services and makes them even better
Google+ Hangouts are really cool. Experiment with them
Instagram
Instagram was purchased by Facebook and is now playing the role of
Facebook's 'Pinterest Fighter.' As noted earlier, the visual web is crucial
and when combined with mobile, it is almost certainly going to be a
dominant force. Think of Instagram like Twitter using a filtered photo
instead of 140 characters. Instagram will be an important player in the
future, since it is backed by Facebook, but if you are looking for a network
to stay out of the game with for a little bit, I'd recommend to hold on this
one.
Key Benefits:
very strong in mobile
Think of it like a visual Twitter. Great for capturing timely events.
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AN OVERVIEW OF SOCIAL PLATFORMS
Trip Advisor
If you are in the hospitality industry, you are likely already very familiar with
this platform. What you may not be familiar with is the robustness of the
tool and the incredible importance it plays with your business. Do NOT
ignore this platform. Take control of your profile and respond to each and
every one of the comments on it. Make sure there are great photos posted
and if there are poor reviews, jump in and use it as an opportunity for service
recovery, if needed.
Key Benefits:
The go-to network for the hospitality industry.
The reviews are very powerful. Listen & respond to them honestly.
Other Networks
Other networks for local businesses to consider include Yelp, Foursquare
while B2B companies may be more interested in platforms like SlideShare.
No matter which platforms you select, remember they are merely tools.
Just because a carpenter has a great hammer doesn't mean he is going to
build great houses OR have a great business. Great, compelling, purpose-
driven content is at the heart of business success in social media.
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TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and map out the different platforms you
will use to carry out your social media and content strategy.
Social Profile Design Reference Guide.
Once you have selected your platforms, you will need to make them look good. Every platform
is different, with various design requirements. Click here to download a quick design refer-
ence guide for all the major social media platforms.
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
THE TEN STEP SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY BLUEPRINT | STEP EIGHT
Learn more about TentSocial Design Solutions
43
STEP NINE
TIMING MIX
Timing is everything.
Molly Sims
STEP NINE: TIMING MIX
One of the final steps in defining your social media strategy is to
establish a schedule and frequency for posting. I call this the
'Timing Mix', which is a direct continuation from step 7, the
'Media Mix.' Depending on the resources of your team, the
frequency of posts should vary significantly. My best
advice for you is to be conservative in how much you
will post and then work up from there. That being said,
consistency is very important on social media so make
sure you never go more than a few days without post-
ing something.
The first step in creating a timing mix is to define not
when exactly you will post (that will come later), rather how
often are you going to create, curate and comment, in gen-
eral. The following pages will help you to determine how many
times a day, week and month you will engage in your communities.
Be sure to down|oad our soc|a| med|a strategy temp|ate to help you plan your timing
mix.
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How Often Will You Create?
Take a look back at Step 7 when you defined the type of content you
would be creating. What are the resources required to create your con-
tent? Will you be creating blogs? videos? Presentations? eBooks? Each
piece of content requires a very different degree of resources and as such
needs to be planned realistically. Most companies should begin with blogging
as a foundation for content. In general, in order for a blog to be effective, at least
one article should be created a week with the ideal range being closer to 2-4 per
week, depending on the industry and nature of content. Of course, 2-4 blog
posts are NOT realistic if you are a one-person team and you will be adding it on
in addition to your current workload.
How Often Will You Curate?
Content curation is a task that needs to become a reflex for you and/or
members of your team. You should get in the habit of regularly reading
articles in your industry and sharing them freely on your social networks.
Twitter is an especially good network for this. Make a habit of searching for
hashtags or keywords related to your industry a few times a week (at least) and
retweeting and commenting on posts in that stream. If you find a good article or
piece of content on one network, save the link and write social posts to share it
across all of your other networks as well. To be successful in content curating,
you must be consistent and have a genuine desire to learn more about your own
industry. Through this consistent search for the latest and greatest, you will
develop a style for the type of content that you will pass on to your fans. Stay
true to this style, be consistent and your fans will love you for it.
HOW TO DETERMINE SOCIAL TIMING
1
2
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How Often Will You Comment & Contribute?
It is a little bit more difficult to schedule 'caring' for your customers as it
requires more of a responsive approach. ALL questions should be responded to
on your social media platforms. Do your best to respond as soon as you can,
but don't sweat it if it takes you a few days. People genuinely appreciate a
response from an organization on social media, even if it takes a few daysjust
don't wait much longer than that.
As far as commenting and contributing, this can take a similar approach to
content curation in that it is something you need to get in the habit of doing on a
regular basis. While you are looking for new content on blogs and other social
platforms, don't just take the link and create content with it - contribute to that
community by leaving a comment or add value to a retweet by placing a 2-3
word commentary before it. This will help to bring a unique character to you and
your brand, improving your credibility in the long run.
2
HOW TO DETERMINE SOCIAL TIMING
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TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and plan the frequency that you will create,
curate and contribute.
Timing Tip:
If youve already tried managing social media, you know that it can quickly eat up hours of your day
without you even knowing what happened. To avoid this, segment your social media activity into
defined time periods during the day.
Take Advantage of Social Media Management Tools:
Luckily, there are some fantastic tools out there that will make your management of several different
profiles, much easier at a relatively low cost. While there are several software platforms out there
(including Sprout Social and Seesmic), our favourite is Hootsuite, which allows you to customize
several different social media streams, monitor for comments, assign them to relevant team members
and, the most popular feature, schedule your posts so you can have a consistent social media
presence without actually being on Facebook all day.
Click here for a FREE trial of Hootsuite PRO.
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
THE TEN STEP SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY BLUEPRINT | STEP NINE
Learn how TentSocia| can help you out
48
STEP TEN
METRICS MIX
Not everything that can be counted counts, and not
everything that counts can be counted.
Albert Einstein
STEP TEN: METRICS MIX
The final step in the social media strategy blueprint is the 'Metrics
Mix'. This is where we get to explore what some call the mys-
terious world of social media ROI. As mentioned, in Step 6
(Social Content Mix), the success of your social media
and content marketing needs to be measured against
appropriate goals. These goals should NOT always be
primarily about driving sales. Sales is, of course, the
ultimate goal, but you need to measure the success of
your social media efforts more holistically than that.
I recommend breaking up your measurement in a similar
manner that you broke down your content in Step 6. Start
with measuring hard metrics such as 1) Reach and Awareness,
2) Engagement & Consideration, 3) Conversion & Sales
I call these hard metrics, because almost all social
platforms allow detailed analysis of these.
There are also some softer metrics that are much more difficult to measure, but are also very
much worth considering. These are general sentiment of conversation (positive, neutral, nega-
tive), excellence in online customer service and customer insights. The area of research and
customer insights is often ignored by marketers when they create social media communities -
which I believe to be a massive missed opportunity, as they are in some cases a very large
test community where they can ask many of the same questions to their audience that they
might ask a focus group (and spend a fraction of the $$$).
Depending on your objectives, the level of importance you place on different metrics will
vary, so it is important to customize this step for what works for you organization.
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HOW TO MEASURE SOCIAL
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3
Finally, the ultimate goal of all this is to drive conversion and/or sales. I
encourage you to take the time to measure the above metrics, but
remember to make sure it is all laddering back to this. At the end of
the day, if nothing is actually happening from a conversion and sales
point of viewyou are probably wasting your time and need to
re-look your approach.
The biggest issue with conversion and sales is actually effectively measuring it.
Now, this is not an issue with the social platforms themselves rather it is an issue that has
faced every form of advertising since the beginning of marketing. The reality is that it is
actually much easier to get to this though online media than traditional.
Measure, Conversion & Sales
1
2
A general rule for measuring reach & awareness, is that you likely want it
to increase over time. Since social media is NOT Tv, and it takes time
to grow and develop an audience, your goal should be to do just that -
not blast 1 message to 30 million people, once or twice. Remem-ber,
you have content that is created with the intent of driving wider reach
and awareness, so make sure you line up your content with the correct
metric.
Measure, Reach & Awareness
Measuring engagement and consideration can be a little bit more diffi-
cult than measuring reach as it requires the evaluation of several
different components. These might include comments, likes, clicks
on content that is related to your product or services. Traffic from
social media to a conversion landing page is a key metric for consid-
eration.
Measure, Engagement & Consideration
SALE
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BUT, you must take the time and make an investment in infrastructure so that you can accu-
rately measure conversion and sales as a result of your online marketing efforts. If you do,
justifying social media will be easy. If it doesn't work, change your strategy or walk away
from it. But, you cannot blame a lack of perceived success from using social media on
social media itself as a platform, since you likely just dont know went wrong if you dont
have the proper infrastructure to measure the activity.
HOW TO MEASURE SOCIAL
TOOLS & RESOURCES
Download the Social Media Blueprint Excel Template and plan the frequency that you will
create, curate and contribute.
Use Powerful Online Tools to Measure Conversion & Sales
Measuring conversion and sales is certainly the most difficult and will vary from company to company,
but is also the most important. Luckily, there are some great software companies around who have
made this process much easier. At TentSocial our software preference is HubSpot, an all-in-one market-
ing software that allows you to do everything from create blogs, emails and landing pages to tracking
the activity and source of traffic as it relates to visits, conversions and sales. Click here for a FREE
demo of HubSpot to test-drive it for yourself.
Reach & Awareness Metrics
Facebook Key Metrics: Impressions (post-level & page-level), fans & shares
Twitter Key Metrics: Followers, retweets
Insights Engagement and Consideration Metr|cs
Facebook Key Metrics: People Talking About, Engaged Users, Likes, Shares
Twitter Key Metrics: Retweets, mentions (combined with influencers)
Conversion Metrics
Form Submissions, Coupon Download, Resource download, Webinar registration,
Trial/Demo Registration, Sales
For benchmarking versus others in your industry, check out http://www.socialbakers.com/
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
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53
WHATS NEXT?
The Blueprint in Closing...
This brings us to the end of the Social Media Strategy Blueprint. If you have made it this far,
then you can consider yourself far ahead of your peers as it relates to a deep understanding of
how to effectively leverage social media.
The strategy is only the beginning though. Once a solid strategy has been laid down, you need
to plan what the execution will look like on a day-to-day basis. At TentSocial, we have a docu-
ment for this as well called the Social Media Playbook. It goes into detail about how to create
content calendars, social media internal and external guidelines, approval flow, escalation
guide, brand style & tone of voice and much more! Click here to request first access to the
Social Media Playbook as it is released.
Until next time,
Stay Social!
Jeff Berezny
Founder & Director of Content Strategy
TENT SOCIAL
@tentsocial
Tent Social Marketing Strategy Series
TENT MEDlA 2012
A|| R|g|ts Rese|ved