Year over year we see just how important social media is. It’s where companies can find their ideal clients and customers organically learning, connecting, supporting, and sharing. That’s why brands not only need it, they need to excel at it. But most business persons working tirelessly to improve customer acquisition, engagement, and loyalty have one common question: How?!
While there’s no one-size-fits-all answer, there is a singular pitfall that many organizations run into: They don’t spend enough time – or any time – crafting a social media mission statement that speaks to the core of what they want to achieve.
What Is a Social Media Mission Statement?
Simply put, a social media mission statement is a formal declaration that summarizes your reasons, goals, and hopeful outcomes for having a social media presence. It’s a small but mighty sentence (or series of sentences) that serves to inform all your content decisions and activities, including what platforms you pour your sweat, tears, and soul time and effort into. It’s an activity that should be completed in the middle of creating your social media plan.
Where Should You Start?
Before you can develop a social media mission statement – from which you will develop your overall social media strategy – you need to figure out who you want to reach. To do that, start by answering the following questions:
- Who is your target audience?
- What social channels is your target audience most active on and why?
- What other channels do they follow?
- How do they typically engage?>
- What are they talking about amongst their peers and how do they speak? (You want to speak the same language as them!)
- What resources are most helpful to them?
- What problems or questions can your company help resolve?
- What qualities do they look for in companies that they support?
Then, you need to define how you plan to reach, relate, and speak to them. The more detailed, the better:
- What is your voice and tone? (Note: This can vary from platform to platform as they all serve different purposes and audiences)
- How should your content – written and visual – make your audience feel?
One mistake that brands often make is thinking they must have a presence on every social platform that exists. While that may be nice to have and something you can eventually build up to, it’s certainly not essential to start. In fact, it can be detrimental to your overall reach and impact. By determining your brand’s audience, social identity, and goals, you can narrow down the channels that will work best and ensure energy (and money) isn’t wasted developing the ones that won’t.
How to Write Your Social Media Statement
Your social mission statement should define two things: What a social presence will do for your business and what your channel will do for your audience.
First, what you want your audience to do on your social page. Do you want them to like and share? Comment? Buy something? Visit your blog? As with any marketing efforts, you can’t be all things to all people. The more specific you can make your answers to these questions, the more effective you’ll be.
Second, determine how you’ll deliver value to not just your current followers, but potential new ones. What type of content will you post? What main topics, categories or messages will your brand support? How will your strategy contribute to the overall customer experience your company wants to design? Most importantly, how does heart inform everything you do? Don’t just make social media about you. Create your overall strategy and mission with the true intention to serve humans first, and increase business needs second.
People are savvier than ever these days – they can sense dishonesty and ulterior motives. You have to say what you mean and mean what you say. To be successful, ensure everything you share and create comes from a thoughtful, authentic, and transparent place with a pure intention to help connect and serve.
Now you’re ready to give your social media mission statements a shot! When you feel confident in your answers for the previously listed questions, you can begin to articulate your mission for each individual channel. Here’s a model you can follow:
We’re on [social channel] to [summary of activity & purpose], which in turn will [how it will support your company’s goals].
It might read like this:
“We’re on Instagram to help companies – big and small – evaluate their customer experiences, which in turn will empower them to make data- and design-driven decisions with humans at their core.”
How to Gauge Effectiveness & Performance
Your social media mission statement is not the endpoint of your social strategy, in fact, it’s far from it. It simply should provide a starting point that helps drive what and how to strategically, yet authentically, share content and build community.
To be sure you execute against your mission and work toward your business goals, build a comprehensive social strategy that aligns with and serves your new social media mission statement. Surf other successful channels to see what they’re posting and find ways to put your own spin on content that’s performing well. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel, you just have to give it a fresh coat of paint that’s unique to your brand.
Once strategic social posting is well under way, evaluate performance by measuring growth against previously-established key performance indicators (KPIs). There are countless social metrics to gauge your month-over-month social success. It’s crucial to decide which ones are most important to you. Do you want to increase your follower count? Post impressions? Referral web traffic? Share of voice? Clicks, likes, shares, comments, lead conversions… the metrics go on and on. The KPIs you decide are most important should directly contribute in some way to getting closer to your company’s bottom line.
Keep a running record of your progress and dive deep into what’s working and what’s not. Just like societal trends and expectations seem to change and evolve overnight, so do social media best practices and user behavior. Be prepared to make adjustments to your social content strategy frequently while staying committed to and aligned with your human-centric mission.
And most importantly, be creative and have fun! Create content that you find inspiring, helpful and motivating. If you don’t enjoy the posts you’re sharing, it’s likely no one else will either.
Need help identifying your ideal audience, creating customer personas, increasing your social media reach or refining your brand identity and voice? Contact us now. We’d love to help!