Social Media Management: Strategies, Roles, and Benefits

Social media management is an ever-evolving topic. As new social media platforms arise, algorithms used to determine what users see on each platform change, and platforms fall in and out of favor. If you want to succeed on social media, you must constantly update your strategy and tactics to accommodate these changes or you’ll soon find yourself struggling to gain traction or even sustain the success you already achieved on social media.

global social media usage
Image courtesy of Smart Insights

Although a little dated, the image above shows the prevalence of social media, the amount of time spent on social media, and other key variables related to social media use; social media remains a viable option for companies. That’s especially true when it comes to younger consumers. Teen boys, for instance, spend an average of 4.4 hours per day on social media, while girls spend, on average, an hour longer per day on social media. The average user between 16 and 24 spends three hours per day on social media. Don’t discount social media usage by older consumers by considering social platforms only appeal to younger ones. A survey of older Americans found they spend an average of nearly an hour a day on social media platforms.

Both consumer-facing and business-to-business brands can find success on social media if they employ the right social media management strategies and give those strategies sufficient time to prove their worth. You won’t achieve success on social media overnight or without sustained efforts on the right tactics. Read on to learn more about how to succeed with your social media strategy.

What is social media management?

Social media management is the practice of creating, scheduling, analyzing, and curating content across various social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, Pinterest, and LinkedIn. It is a crucial aspect of modern marketing strategies aimed at amplifying a brand’s messaging, improving its online reputation, and engaging with its community.

According to Sprinklr, social media management involves strategically overseeing and managing a brand’s online presence across various social platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, and others.

The importance of social media management

Maintaining a strong presence on social media is equally vital in today’s digital economy as having a physical storefront. Similar to how a retail establishment depends on an appealing window showcase to entice shoppers, businesses leverage social media to captivate and interact with their audience. Given the data shared earlier about the amount of time and percentage of the population using social media, can you afford to ignore this marketing tactic?kpi for success

Successful management of social media transcends mere posting content on social platforms; it demands a profound comprehension of the users on each platform (where significant differences exist across them), consistency, superb writing prowess, analytical acumen, and outstanding organizational capabilities. Plus, time is a critical factor in achieving social media marketing success. On average, it can take up to 12 months to see a significant lift (increase in sales) resulting from a sustained social media strategy based on best practices, although you can expect to see some change in three to six months [source].

The benefits of social media management

When done right, social media management offers a host of value to your brand, including”

  • Boost brand awareness and visibility online
  • Regular updates keep the brand in the audience’s mind and enhance online presence.
  • Social media pages often rank highly in search results, reinforcing brand perception.
  • Proactively manage customer service
  • Efficiently handling customer inquiries and feedback via social media.
  • Addressing both tagged and untagged mentions to manage brand perception.
  • Discover valuable consumer insights
  • Analyzing engagement and feedback to understand audience preferences.
  • Using insights to refine social media strategies and content.

Key roles and responsibilities in social media management

Social media management involves various tasks. These tasks may fall to different employees with specialized skills or a single employee who must juggle the tasks. The key here is understanding that you can’t just throw up something on a social platform and hope it sticks. You need to perform all these functions if you hope to see success at the end of your efforts. Here are four primary areas of focus:

Content management

Someone must be responsible for uploading content on a consistent basis. Below is a graphic showing the recommended posting schedule based on the platform(s) you plan to use. When posting long videos on YouTube, once a week is fine, especially if you create a schedule such as posting every Tuesday. You should post TikTok short videos about once or twice a day.

concepts for digital marketing
Image courtesy of Louise M

As you can imagine, keeping up with all the necessary content isn’t an easy task. Maintaining a content marketing calendar makes this process more efficient by allowing you to brainstorm ideas for content across an entire month and then create content as needed. Marketing automation is another great tool, as it saves you from interrupting your other work to post something on a social platform. You can use automation to schedule a week or a month ahead of time.

Community engagement

Unlike traditional advertising, social media marketing isn’t just talking; it’s also listening. You want to build a community of engaged followers because these followers support your brand by amplifying your messaging since every like, comment, and share spreads your message to your followers’ friends, providing UGC (user-generated content) that supports you, and may even defend your brand against complainers.

Creating a community involves understanding your audience and giving them what they want. It also requires two-way communication, so plan to spend time responding to engaged users, even if it’s only to like their comments. Addressing questions or concerns posted on social media quickly and completely helps users trust and value your brand.

Social data analysis

One of the most valuable elements of social media is the amount of data generated. By analyzing that data all the way through to a goal completion helps you refine your strategy to help you craft better messages, time sharing posts better, reach the users most likely to buy from you (or complete another goal, such as subscribing to your email), and forecast sales to aid in future planning.

Daily activities of a social media manager

Social media managers perform various tasks to keep their brand’s social media presence active and engaging. These tasks include:

Crafting a social media blueprint

You need a sound strategy built on best practices, so crafting a social media blueprint is a recurring job for a social media manager. This involves:

  • Building an understanding of your target market, where they hang out online, what messaging might motivate them, and choosing social media platforms that match your target market. Since most firms have limited bandwidth, it’s important to choose which platforms fit your target market and your ability to manage them effectively. The image below should help.

    comparison of social media platforms
    Image courtesy of SEO Design Chicago
  • Setting objectives that are both realistic and challenging then monitoring performance to ensure you meet those objectives.
  • Determining the best time to post on each platform to achieve the highest reach, then scheduling content to match.
  • Crafting content that fits your target market and brand voice. You need a mixture of text, images, and video to provide variety and meet the various needs of groups (segments) within your target market.
  • Audience interaction: Addressing comments, messages, and input from followers.
  • Performance assessment: Evaluating social media metrics to refine tactics and enhance outcomes.
  • Influencer management: Partnering with influencers to boost brand visibility.

Getting started with social media management

If you already have established social media platforms, an audit can help identify opportunities and eliminate elements that don’t work to help you reach your objectives. If you don’t have a presence on social media or want to rethink your existing strategy, follow these steps:

  1. Study your audience: Use data to understand where your audience spends time online.
  2. Pick your platforms: Focus on the platforms your audience frequents most.
  3. Review your social media strategy: Regularly check your social media analytics data to analyze metrics and competitor activity to identify what works and what doesn’t. Use those insights to create a new strategy or revise your existing strategy.
  4. Formulate your social media plan: Craft customized strategies for each platform to achieve precise objectives. Don’t fall into the trap of creating a post and then sharing it on all your social platforms, as different platforms have different norms (ie. Instagram uses hashtags while Facebook doesn’t) and attract somewhat different users.
  5. Develop social media ads, as organic social media isn’t as effective as it once was. Algorithms developed by platforms determine which users see which posts and now emphasize paid content over unpaid content (the average click-through rate is only a little better than 1.5% for organic posts).
  6. Develop a content calendar: Strategize and organize content to ensure a steady presence. Planning content in advance to align with marketing campaigns and ensure consistency.
  7. Assess social media performance: Keep tabs on metrics to evaluate strategies and enhance results.

Use cases for social media management

Social media management involves utilizing different platforms, each with its own goals and metrics for success. Here are some typical scenarios:

Social media content strategy

This involves crafting and sharing content on a consistent basis, listening to users, hijacking influencers, and other tasks designed to build an engaged audience.

Online reputation oversight

Remember that social media is a two-way street. Listen for brand mentions both on and off your pages so you have advance warning when something doesn’t meet the needs of your customers. By fixing problems fast and being transparent, you build your reputation and develop trust.

PR and emergency response

Use social media to highlight your efforts to support causes such as the environment, charities, and other forms of social good. As you can see below, many consumers want to buy from companies that share their values.

corporate social responsibility
Image courtesy of Customer Insight Group

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Be ready to respond to emergency situations so you don’t leave customers in the lurch.

Digital community cultivation

Building a community is more than gaining followers; however, if your data shows you consistently grow your community, you know you’re doing something right.

Paid social media tactics

As I said earlier, you need paid social media, as organic won’t be enough for success. You need to establish a budget and experiment with various strategies until you learn what works best for your community on each platform and which platforms provide the biggest return.

Another aspect of advertising is coordinating across various channels to ensure your messaging is integrated and reinforces your efforts across them. Using a style guide containing your color codes, fonts, and key images is essential in performing this task. You should also consider coordinating individual campaigns across channels by using similar images, messages, and other elements.

Conclusion

Successful social media management goes beyond content sharing. It involves understanding audience preferences, creating engaging messages, and interacting regularly across platforms. Strategic use of social media helps boost brand recognition, handle reputation issues, nurture customer connections, and achieve business goals. With thoughtful planning and consistent execution, it becomes a potent tool in contemporary marketing, propelling brands to thrive online.

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