Whether you’re a small business, startup, or just work at a company that hasn’t expanded it’s marketing division yet, it can be difficult to accomplish all the digital tasks on the to-do list without a dedicated team on hand. Social media can be a powerful strategy for every business, but without the proper planning, strategy, and tools, it can feel like a daunting task. So daunting, in fact that many businesses in this position simply don’t attempt any activity on social media. Sound like you? Not to fear! We’ve put together this guide to provide you with the best social media growth hacks for businesses without a marketing team. Read on for some serious social media growth inspiration.
Top Social Media Tasks to Consider
To kick things off, we’re going to outline the tasks a normal social media marketing team would typically have on their plate. It’s important to realize what actually goes into managing social media platforms (and what your competitors may have up their sleeve) so that you can then prioritize tasks within your own business. Here’s a checklist of social media marketing tasks for growth:
- Customer Research
- Competitor Research
- Hashtag Research & Strategy
- Defining Brand Voice Guidelines
- Coordinating Campaigns to Align with Company Initiatives
- Copywriting Captions
- Graphics/Content Creation
- Sourcing any User Generated Content (See examples)
- Content Scheduling
- Engagement with Followers
- Outreach to New Followers and/or Influencers
- Paid Media Strategies
- Analyzing Data and Adjusting Strategies as Needed
Want to save this checklist for your office? Click below for the full social media growth cheat sheet!
As you can see, the social media growth tasks tend to center in a few key areas; research, strategy, content creation, scheduling, and data. Each of these steps are important to the overall success of your social media growth plan. While accomplishing these tasks is easier with a dedicated team and the level of engagement is higher, it’s still possible to work your way through the list on your own.
Research is absolutely the first place you should start. Completing the research steps helps lay a strong and clear foundation that when documented, will make it easier for different members of your team to dive into social media tasks while maintaining consistency. Brand Voice Guidelines are also important to have on hand so that the entire team knows how to craft communications via your company’s social media channels. A consistent and on-brand voice is crucial to social media growth.
When it comes to the other tasks on the list, it is up to you to determine which tasks you will focus on and the consistency in which they will be implemented. If the list seems overwhelming to you, know that taking small, positive steps forward in your social media growth is better than not attempting it at all, or producing low-quality content. Be sure to cut yourself some slack as your team discovers the best social media plan for your schedule. We’ve provided some tips for process hacks and social media tools listed below that can help you tackle these tasks more efficiently and with less stress.
Social Media Growth: Process Hacks
Finding a social media growth process that works for you will take some trial and error. Depending on the number of team members you have supporting you in your social media efforts and the amount of time you are able to devote to the tasks per week will determine how quickly you grow, and which tasks take priority. Luckily, there are several process hacks you can implement to help your team save time and make the most of each and every effort you make. Here are a few of our favorites for social media growth:
Utilize User Generated Content for Social Media Growth
If coming up with creative ideas for your social media content is a pain for you, or simply takes too much time, consider utilizing the wonderful world of user generated content. What is that, you may ask? User generated content is any type of content (including images, hashtags, videos, text, GIF’s, etc.) that are shared by unaffiliated or unpaid contributors about a particular brand or company. Basically, when users of your product or service create posts about your brand of their own accord – that’s user generated content! Whether you inspire users to share their own content through a competition, a signature hashtag, or an incentivized review program, there are so many ways to collect content from others! Once you’ve found some great content from users, get their permission to share the content on your own platforms and voila! Free, brand-appropriate content that took minimal effort for your brand to obtain. Talk about an easy social media growth strategy!
Repurpose Existing Content for Social Media Growth
Does your brand have a blog? Or company videos that were created for fundraising or promotional purposes? What about images from events that your business was part of? Chances are, you already have a stash of wonderful content that could be repurposed for your social media growth. One of the big misconceptions folks have about building their social media presence is that every follower sees everything that is posted. This is simply not true! In fact, most followers won’t see most of your posts. That’s why reposting and repurposing content is so important, and will save you a ton of work! When you create several graphics for each piece of content, it expands your available posts in your content library, and provides more opportunities for your brand to be seen.
Block Off Time for Batch Working for Social Media Growth
When you don’t have a marketing department to focus on social media growth daily, you’ll likely need to have a unique schedule for preparing content for your channels. Rather than create posts right before it’s time to share, or weekly, consider blocking off one work day per month to “batch work” your social media efforts. When you get, and stay, in the social media growth mindset, it can be easier to get those creative juices flowing and knock out the content calendar for an entire month. You can then upload the posts into a social media scheduling tool. Having your posts pre-made and scheduled takes off much of the pressure, and prevents you from scrambling to post last-minute. You can rest easy knowing that your social media accounts will be active all month while you work on other tasks for your business.
Schedule Time for Social Media Engagement
While batch working to create and schedule your social media posts can be done in advance, the engagement tasks will need to be done periodically each week. Engagement is crucial to building a community online, reaching new potential customers, and solidifying your brand’s personality and expectations of customer service. These types of tasks include; responding to user comments on posts, finding potential clients to start conversations with, sharing posts from related accounts, posting “stories” on Instagram and Facebook, and generally doing what social media is really meant for – being social! Whether one person is in charge of these tasks, or you switch off weekly, dedicating 10 minutes per day can go a long way.
Social Media Tools for Businesses Without a Marketing Department
One of the best ways to increase efficiency and check off more of those social media tasks when you don’t have a devoted marketing team is to leverage the power of social media tools. These days there are many tools that help cut down on the amount of time you have to worry about maintaining your social media profiles, giving you more time to focus on your small business! It’s important to understand what social media tool hacks are out there, how they work, and whether that will truly solve a problem in your business’ workflow or not. Here’s an overview of the three main tasks that can be streamlined with a social media tool hack:
1. Social Media Post Creation Tool
When a business doesn’t have a marketing department, the actual creation of visuals for social media may seem too far out of reach. Luckily you don’t have to be a Photoshop expert these days to produce polished and on-brand graphics to help your social media growth. There are many tools available online to help you find images without copyrights to use, templates to make editing easier, and tools that encompass all in one! Canva is one of our favorites.
2. Social Media Scheduling Tool
A social media scheduling tool allows you to upload your text and media for a post and select the exact day, time, and social media platform you’d like it to be posted on. These are seriously useful so that you can have your posts ready to go in advance, and don’t have to stop in the middle of another task to ensure posts are sending out. While there are many different options available, tools like Buffer and Hootsuite tend to be some of the popular ones.
3. Social Media Aggregator
Want to make your social media efforts go further? Consider using a social media aggregator tool. This tool will automatically pull your content from the social media platforms of your choice and combine it into a singular feed for display on your business’ website. It’s great for social media growth, but also is an easy hack for keeping your website fresh with your latest content! Consider it a two-for-one deal! We might be a little biased, but the Juicer social media aggregator has everything you need to get started, whether you’re on a free or paid plan.
After reading this article, you might have realized that you actually need some extra help with social media marketing! Lucky for you, we have an entire article on how to hire a marketing person for your business ready for you to read.