Marketing & SEO

Social Media Marketing Plan – Sample, Templates and Overall Guidelines

Bronte Price 28 June, 2021

Social media has taken over the Internet by storm. Every campaign that is welcomed on social media is a hit everywhere else. Almost every individual you meet is using social media on a day-to-day basis already. And why not? The advantages are enormous – it offers quality engagement and provides excellent visibility to brands and individuals. And hence, everybody is trying to be the best out there! But how do you do so? Do you invest enough time to create a comprehensive social media marketing plan for your business? Not yet? This post will show you where to start and how to master the craft and start performance marketing reporting! Before we get into the details of social media marketing, let us consider a sample plan used by 32% of marketing agencies worldwide.

Ideal Social Media Marketing Plan Features

Any marketing plan’s primary goal is to identify and connect with your target audience. And a social media marketing plan, like that of Dove, inspires every brand. After all, who doesn’t remember their #SpeakBeautiful campaign and relate to it?

Today we’d like to share some cool examples that fulfill all the requirements of successful marketing strategies. Right from goal setting to the execution part, they have all of the basics covered. Here’s an analysis of their strengths.

1. Taco Bell Aware of Target Audience

Taco Bell knows its target audience and strictly abides by it. Any social media plan suggests knowing your audience before delivering your project. Taco Bell has created its buyer’s personas and has a social media plan revolving around it. Understanding your audience’s behavior patterns and interests can help you create the best content. And Taco Bell has been managing to do the same effortlessly. It links its brand values to the audience to develop stellar campaigns.

Besides, it has three social networks and three different marketing plans:

Taco Bell on Instagram

Taco Bell Instagram

On its Instagram, Taco Bell provides funny content and attractive images. It shares both products and happy clients. Have a look at some of their descriptions of posts:

  • Too much Taco Bell? I haven’t heard of it.
  • Step One: Graduate. Step Two: Taco Bell (besides the image where students eat their tacos).
  • She thought the view was sweet. We thought the freeze was sweeter.
  • Who needs confetti when you have Sauce Packets?

Bright and colorful images and satisfied clients eating Taco Bell’s food make people subscribe and stay on the page.

Taco Bell LinkedIn

On this social network, America’s favorite Mexican restaurant owners show professionalism and engagement with other business spheres. For example, they have posted about:

  • investments in technology;
  • their meetings (f.e. with John R. Lewis on how to achieve Restless Inclusivity);
  • taking part in various programs (f.e. Vax for the Win incentive program), etc.

Facebook Promotion

This social network pays attention to new beverages and food, novelties (e.g., testing Naked Chicken Chalupa with a Crispy Plant-Based Shell), delivery, special offers, and prices on Taco Bell’s Facebook.

Taco Facebook

Overall, we think Taco Bell has done a great job and successfully divided the marketing strategies according to social networks’ aims, with Facebook Video Ads included. More recently, they’ve got involved in TikTok, where they have lots of TikTok followers. That’s something we can discuss another time.

In case you are an SEO or marketing specialist who wants to streamline the billing process, we recommend as a cool source of downloadable SEO invoice templates.

2. NASA Providing the Research

One of the most important strategies that NASA teaches through its campaign is the need to research. You may know your target audience, but until you know their pain points, what is it that you can address? The research plays an integral role in shaping your content, and NASA follows it religiously.

It provides a vast mass of engaging and straightforward information(facts, personal stories, high-quality images, etc.):

  • on its LinkedIn, we observe fresh information about its business progress and jobs;
  • they share valuable information about astronomy on Twitter;
  • there is a special TV show on YouTube and eye-catching images of the Moon, Earth, and other planets/stars on Instagram.

3. Nike’s S.M.A.R.T Goals

Every social media plan must follow specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely goals. Each social media plan must have a purpose attached to it. Nike’s goal is relatively simple and brilliant as it focuses mainly not on the products but on the companies and people using them. Sports fans can’t abandon such a proposition as they are happy to wear the same clothes/shoes their adored celebrities wear.

Besides, Nike is a famous brand with a vast audience, so there is no need to promote its services, but supporting its popularity and recognition is essential. And social networks have become helpful tools for coping with this task.

4. Dove Is Aware of Its Current Positioning and Takes Insights Seriously

Every social media marketing plan has a lot to learn from the current positioning. According to Dove, the #SpeakBeautiful campaign was a hit since women used it over 168,000 times. Not only that, the social media impressions for a campaign as simple as that is a whopping 800 million and counting. Any brand that keeps track of its insights and knows where it lies in the market as of today will only get better with time, just like Dove outperforms itself with every new campaign.

5. GoPro Having a Consistent and Executable Action Plan

GoPro Instagram Page

One of the main reasons why brands fail on social media is because they lack a plan. A successful social media strategy like GoPro’s is something to learn from. It is well aware of its platforms and consistently provides the right content to its target audience. The reason why its campaigns are inspirational is that it has a set executable plan for it with unique posts and different selling offers:

  • Instagram – there are thousands of posts with the hashtag #GoPro, which is associated with extreme traveling now; providing outstanding images showcases its products and influences great user engagement.
  • FB is used for promotion strategies, while Twitter is used for introducing novelties and hard selling.

A social media plan usually consists of the above-stated points, and GoPro is one of the best samples. But what if you’ve to make a stellar plan without much effort? The social media marketing plan template makes sure that you do!

SMM Template Types

There are different types of templates available to create a social media marketing plan. I have mentioned a few of them for you:

1. Social Media Strategy Template

Use this social media strategy template and get a free scheme of what to start from. It enlists the four essential parts of any social media business marketing plan, including:

  • defining what you want to accomplish;
  • understanding who you are;
  • how you’re going to achieve goals;
  • advise and revise tips.

This template also helps you understand the best social media outlets for your business.

2. Social Media Audit Template

This free template contains auditing:

  • the current status of your social media plan;
  • its performance (in the form of engagement rate and business results);
  • opportunities (recommendations for improvement).

The audit template also ensures that your profiles revolve around your brand. Future campaigns can be restructured and can be created likewise.

3. Editorial Content Calendar

Social Media Content Calendar

An editorial content calendar can be formed by Google Sheets or Excel Spreadsheets. It is a Social Media Marketing Plan Template by which you can categorize your content and the required time. A Content Calendar has details like the title of content and description of the content, including author details, deadlines, and proper channels to promote your content.

Also, you can use Trello, a free and convenient board where you can place all your tasks, dates, and demands and even notice at what stage of work you’re now(planning, editing, publishing, etc.).

Useful Calendar

4. Social Media Content Calendar

Nowadays, one who knows how essential SEO copywriting is, realizes that it’s necessary to optimize the content both for people and Google. Promoting your posts on social media can be planned in advance; hence, this template is of great use. It is similar to the editorial calendar but includes social media specifics: post details, the timing of the post, and the platform used. It helps a brand categorize its marketing strategy and assess its poor-performing posts. Also, a social media content calendar will help you remember your activities. It emits the chance of missing out on essential information while posting completely. Media Content Calendar

5. Social Media Profile Dimensions Template

Every social media platform is different and hence has different dimensions to use. Thus, social media profiles run on specific dimensions, failing which your profile loses appeal. To maintain a brand image, one must comply with the rules. A social media marketing plan template that suggests the correct dimensions for each platform is a must.

Instagram Profile Dimensions Template

6. Social Media Analytics Template

To create a social media marketing business plan, one must be aware of the analytics, measure the return on investment and take care of it (track and analyze the same for future use).

Social Media Analytics Template

This free template lets you record your followers, likes, impressions, shares, and reach. It eventually helps you keep track of your growth by exports and reports from Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

Besides, Smartsheet provides free templates for a social media marketing strategy plan, a social media content calendar, and a social media audit which you can download in Excel, PDF, or PowerPoint. For an alternative with similar features, check out this Smartsheet alternative.

Guidelines for an Excellent Social Media Marketing Business Plan

Templates are hence present throughout your Social media marketing plan’s journey. They are there to help you plan, execute, track, and publish all your content. Of course, a social media marketing plan template is an easier way to carry forward your plans, but is that enough to survive in the market? Certainly not! Every step you take must be well thought out and should not overrule the guidelines. Every plan has general guidelines, and so does a social media marketing plan.

1. Do Not Forget to Define Goals

smart goals image

Goals are everything. As mentioned in the sample above, S.M.A.R.T. goals are your go-to dealership for a social media marketing plan. You must begin by writing your brand’s vision and mission statement. Then, you should always have a target in mind and try to achieve them. Also, focus on attainable goals and avoid daydreaming about social media. Once you start achieving them, there is nothing that can stop you. Whoever you are, have beverages, or a machinery shop, your goals and values must be identified before you set your social media marketing business plan.

2. Identify the Target Audience

Your target audience must be your first find during the campaign. Every brand and every product has its target audience range. If you can figure that out, your attempts will be more precise and will have more outstanding outcomes. Invest in a CRM to gather audience insights. This will help you tailor your social media marketing plan as per audience needs.

Your content can be tailor-made depending on the audience you reach out to. Make sure you have campaigns running in and around your target audience. Identify and act towards building your base a little better every day. Pay attention to clients’ age, location, average income, interests, etc., and interact with them by answering questions and being live.

3. Decide Where to Post

First, try to define what social network can open the potential of your site. Then, depending on your goals, audience, time of posting, visuals, and content, choose the most appropriate platform:

  • Facebook with 1.79 billion users;
  • Instagram exceeds other social networks by its user engagement rate;
  • LinkedIn with users who have a good income from their business;
  • Pinterest and others.

4. Recognize Content Types Compatible with Your Brand

  • If you are a food brand, snippets of food-making videos or high-quality pictures of food are what you’ll use on a cooking website template.
  • If you have a fashion blog design, your feed will mostly contain posts in image format.
  • But if you are a career counselor, your posts might contain questionnaires.
  • Similarly, for a blogger, links would be promoted instead.

Remember, a comic star can never be a fashionista, and vice versa.  One has to identify the type of content that best suits them and work on producing it.

Please, also pay attention to the tone of your content, whether professional or casual, with quality information but also jokes and slang.

5. Promotion and Optimization of Your Content

Despite creating user-generated content, don’t forget about social media promotion:

  • use referral promotion, Instagram story games, reels, go live, launch unique posts, cooperate with bloggers on Instagram(tip: read our post about Instagram promotion guidelines to succeed);
  • launch ads on FB and Twitter, etc.;
  • provide complete information about your company;
  • create a digital business card and add details like contact numbers and social media handles for easy sharing.
  • make your URL short and precise;
  • add keywords and CTA buttons;
  • optimize headers and image size (for FB, it is 828-315, for Instagram, 1024-1024, for Twitter, 1500-1500, etc.);
  • attach special offers to the top.

6. Mix and Match Your Marketing Methods

While Content Marketing is undoubtedly an excellent approach, social media brand building is also creating a buzz. Try figuring out the right influencers for your brand and collaborate with them. Adding a human touch to your brand will always make a more significant impact. Mix and match your marketing strategies now and then. It helps you establish a better conversion rate, brand awareness, content engagement, and trust by adding variety to your offer.

Top Influencers

How to choose the very influencer?

  1. Define the context: it would be strange if Selena Gomez promoted cybersecurity services, for instance.
  2. Check whether they provide valuable reach.
  3. Make sure that an influencer is ready to share your content.

If you still aren’t sure whom to choose, check free influencers marketing tools to get a deep analysis.

7. Identify the Right Time to Post

Once you’ve spent time posting for your brand, you can better understand what time works and what doesn’t. There are peak hours for every business on different social media platforms. Research and study them before launching your content online. Learn to use the time for your benefit, and time shall benefit you. For instance, if you’re using Instagram, consider the best time to post on Instagram to get better results from your efforts. You can also use new channels like Threads to improve your reach. It’s easy to get Thread followers now as the audience is growing fast.

8. Maintain Social Media Calendars

Follow this without fail. Social media calendars are a check on the consistency of your posts. Nobody trusts a brand unless it is consistent with its offers. The same is the case with social media. You’ll fall into trouble if you’re usually missing out on posts, delaying content, and hardly managing your page. The only solution to this is to maintain a calendar that reminds you of the posting!

9. Do Not Forget to Track and Improvise Your Growth

Can you better yourself if you don’t keep a check? You can’t, of course! It is not always about action; direction matters equally. Therefore, it is vital to note where you are leading with your existing plan. To create a social media marketing plan, you’ve toiled hard. However, will it matter if you don’t track what happens besides it? Hence social media metrics must be used as and when required. Remember that you can focus on improvisations only after you know the current worth!

Please, focus on engagement, reach, click-through, hashtag performance, organic and paid likes, conversion rates, therefore, all the 19 essential social media metrics, which are better to follow.

Final Words

This article covers samples, templates, and the general guidelines for creating a social media marketing plan. It is a full-fledged social media guide to launching your brand on social media. Paying attention to visuals, posting regularly, promoting and optimizing your pages, and monitoring their performance and engagement are necessities. Nevertheless, you shouldn’t forget to improvise. Every plan has a scope for improvement. As you learn and grow, you identify them. And as you identify them, do not forget to apply them too!

Besides, if you still don’t have a responsive website with awesome functionality for presenting your company and boosting your client base, look at MotoCMS templates.

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Tags: digital marketing marketing marketing strategies online marketing social media social media presence tips on social media content sharing video marketing
Author: Bronte Price
Bronte Price  is Australia’s First Certified Gay Wedding Celebrant. He stands strongly for marriage equality and takes immense pleasure in marrying any couples in love. He has also co-founded The Equality Network to help wedding suppliers create a better wedding experience for LGBTI couples. He is a regular volunteer newsreader at Joy 94.9, and a member of GLOBE (Gay and Lesbian Organization for Business and Enterprise). Beyond this you will find him either in his organic backyard vegetable garden or taking walks with his fiancée Clint and their four legged fur baby – Bingo.