Social media is everywhere, but it can be easy to get overwhelmed by all the different channels. From Twitter and Facebook to Instagram and LinkedIn, the options are endless. This can be especially hard for small businesses that don’t have dedicated social media managers on staff. Even if you have someone managing all your accounts, it’s important to know how to stay organized so that your efforts aren’t wasted in the wrong areas or at the wrong time of day. Below is a checklist of everything I recommend doing when practicing social media management.
Create a social media content calendar
The social media content calendar is your daily list of what you will post to each platform. It helps you track when you post, so if you have multiple people working on your accounts, they know what they need to do and when to do it. The content calendar is the first thing you should resolve when starting social media management.
You can create a template in Excel or Google Sheets that includes all the information you require: hashtags and handles, links, images, and descriptions — whatever applies. You can copy this into each platform as necessary (more on later).
Optimize your profiles
Optimize your profiles. The following are some tips for optimizing your Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram profiles:
- Make sure the bio is professional and relevant. This is one of the first things people will see when they visit your page, so it’s important to make this as appealing to visitors as possible.
- Add a link to your website (if you have one).
- Add links to other social media accounts where you share content related to what’s being shared on this profile (like Twitter or Pinterest). You can also add links directly from those platforms into their respective sections below the “About Me” section.
- Add an email address where people can reach you if they want more information about the services or products in question (like [email protected]). This way, anyone interested in getting in touch doesn’t have trouble doing so!
Update your cover photo
Social media management starts with visuals. People first see your cover photo, so make sure it’s high quality and reflects who you are as a brand. A professional-looking image will convey the right message from the get-go. Your cover photo should be simple and clear but also relevant to your industry, audience, and message. Make sure it contains elements that match your company or organization’s brand identity or personality!
Update your profile photo
Your profile photo is one of the first things people see when they visit your social media profiles. It serves as an introduction to you and should represent who you are and what you stand for. Your profile picture should be high quality, clear, not blurry, and well lit – if that’s not something that describes your current selfie, then it’s time for an update!
Upload a custom header image
This is the first thing people see when they visit your page, so it’s important to make it count. A good header image should be at least 1200×1200 pixels in size and visually appealing. You can have a static graphic or choose an animated GIF—just make sure whatever you use is consistent with your brand aesthetic and reflects the tone of your content well.
Make sure your username is consistent
Make sure your username is consistent across all social networks.
It’s common sense, but it’s worth mentioning anyway: if you have a username on Twitter and another on Facebook, people won’t know where to find you. The same goes for your email address and even your company’s name (if applicable). Having one consistent handle helps users find you quickly and easily across all channels.
Don’t use spaces in your username! Don’t be trendy! Social media do not allow spaces in usernames or hashtags because they can confuse when searching or posting something with a space in it (for example, “Happy Birthday!”). This means that we have to use something like “happybirthday” instead of HappyBirthdaytoMe@TwitterID#HappyBirthdaytoMe@TwitterID
Add a vanity URL
You’re probably familiar with vanity URLs. They’re custom web addresses that can be used to promote a brand or product, like www.linkedin.com/in/thecoffeecompany or www.facebook.com/businessnamehere.
Vanity URLs are easier to remember and share than standard URLs because they’re usually shorter, more memorable, and contain keywords that match your brand or message (i.e., “linkedin” for LinkedIn). They also give off an air of authenticity and authority when someone sees them in social media posts, emails from customers or leads who want more information about you or your business (this is especially important if a third party has referred them), etc.).
Make it easy for people to find you
Another thing you can do to make it easy for people to find you is to ensure that your username is consistent across all platforms. It should be the same on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and other social media platforms. You should also consider having a vanity URL—a custom domain name with your brand’s name—like [companyname].com or [brandname].com.
You should also add a link from your social media pages to your website so that people can easily find more information about you there. If you’re using an email marketing service like MailChimp or Constant Contact, include links to all your social media accounts at the bottom of every email newsletter.
And finally (and most importantly), use mobile apps like Hootsuite or Sprout Social that allow you to manage multiple profiles from one place on a mobile device. So that no matter where life takes you, there’s no excuse for not being able to keep up with online conversations!
Link to social media pages from your website and email signature
- Link to your social media profiles from your website. Make sure visitors are clear on how they can find you on major platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter.
- Link to your social media profiles from email signatures. From a glance at someone’s email signature, it’s easy for them to determine whether or not they’re interested in following you on social media—and if so, which platforms would be best for them to follow.
- Link to your social media profiles from business cards (or printable cards). Include links for all of your top three networks, and make sure people know how they can get involved with each one! They should be easy enough to do so after just glancing at the card.
Use mobile apps to keep up with conversations on the go
To stay on top of things, use mobile apps. You can use a social media management tool like Hootsuite or Sprout Social to manage and schedule your posts, a social media scheduling tool like Buffer or Edgar to schedule them in advance, or an analytics tool like Sprout Social or Falcon Social to measure the effectiveness of your campaigns. There are also listening tools like Talkwalker or Spredfast, so you know what people are saying about you online at all times, and a monitoring tool like Mention or Google Alerts so that when someone is talking about something relevant to your brand (and it’s not related directly), you’ll be alerted immediately.
Social media management is a big job, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. By following these steps and taking advantage of the many available tools, you can ensure your social media channels are always looking their best and engaging with your audience.