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A recent post highlighted strategies for creating an informal social media team within your organization to help carry out social media strategy.

Debra Feldman was nice enough to tweet a link but gave it the frown emoticon for not being applicable to solopreneurs. I promised to create a comparable list for individuals in business for themselves. Hopefully, these twenty strategies, based on experience with Brainzooming, will help those building their small businesses (or personal brands) more effectively manage social media.

Managing Your Presence

  • Select several social media platforms supporting your business strategy and objectives; concentrate your presence on these alone. You might have one location for content (i.e., a blog or micro-blog), a second for networking (maybe Twitter or LinkedIn), and a third for community interaction (Facebook or LinkedIn).
  • Divide social media time into 3 roughly equal parts – reading and monitoring social media in your topic area, commenting and participating on other peoples’ sites, and creating content for your own site. From this framework, decide how much time weekly you can invest on social media. Really work to stick to your time expectations.
  • Before blogging, determine how many times monthly you expect to blog. Pre-write that many posts to see if the frequency is viable and to build a month-long content cushion for when time is limited.
  • Choose creating and consistently delivering less content over wild swings in activity. Faithfully writing one blog post weekly and three tweets daily is better than three posts your first week with lots of Twitter activity then going silent for weeks.

Generating Content

  • Exploit your best communications talents aggressively in your social media effort. These might include article writing, headline writing, shooting video, illustrations, photos, etc.  Design a content strategy allowing you to use these talents to be as efficient in creating content as possible.
  • Write down at least two potential blog topic ideas daily where they’ll be available later as idea starters.
  • Cut your writing time and keep it short. You don’t need to (and probably shouldn’t) write thousand word blog posts. Stick to one idea in a couple of hundred words.
  • Save tweets and comments you make on other blogs to use as the basis for blog posts.
  • Solicit material from your audience, providing a brief description of what type of content, topics, and format you’re seeking.
  • At a minimum, set up Google Alerts on relevant topics to create readily available content for sharing online.
  • Find an intern from a local university to assist your business in its social media strategy.

Promoting Your Presence

  • Use common hashtags and keywords to increase visibility and pass along mentions.
  • Place social media buttons on your blog to make it easy for readers to share your content within their own social networks.
  • Sync your various social media sites so one item feeds multiple platforms (i.e., send your tweet about a blog post to LinkedIn and Facebook automatically).
  • Offer simple, fun give-aways to your audience to incent participation in commenting, retweeting, social bookmarking, etc.
  • Take time to write a brief bio and company overview for use on every social media site. Use a service such as KnowEm.com to secure your identity on many platforms, with links back to your main sites.
  • Create an informal network of friends (onine and IRL) with relevant networks and agree to tweet about each others’ work.

Continuous Improvement

  • Attend in-person or webinar training on effectively and efficiently using social media applications to build business.
  • Identify someone within your network who is more knowledgeable or efficient at social media than you. After figuring out how to use your best talents to help them, offer to trade for regular help (i.e., tips) on your social media effort.
  • Do at least an informal ROI assessment – is your social media effort generating the type and volume of business results that make your time investment worthwhile?

There are certainly many other ideas and technical approaches you can use to be more efficient in your social media implementation. What things have you tried that are working for you?  – Mike Brown

The Brainzooming Group helps make smart organizations more successful by rapidly expanding their strategic options and creating innovative plans they can efficiently implement. Email us at brainzooming@gmail.com or call 816-509-5320 to learn how we can develop an integrated social media strategy for your brand.

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Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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10 Responses to “20 Strategies for Making Your Solo Social Media Effort More Successful”

  1. Karleton says:

    this was a very informative post. i am a solopreneur and am always looking for ways to maximize my time. thanks!

    • Mike Brown says:

      Karleton – Glad you found value in the ideas. Keep at it! I’m a big advocate for creating content with very consistent, predictable timing. That means I always suggest people play with other time-consuming variables (writing shorter posts, spending less time on graphics, etc.) to keep up the regular schedule.

      Mike

  2. JoAnn says:

    Do you think it is important to always have a full month ready to go? Do you think the amount prewritten depends on the area/topic in which you blog? I generally aim for about 2 weeks out so I can have posts that are responsive to events.

    • Mike Brown says:

      JoAnn – The month is an overly cautious guideline to keep new bloggers from falling into the same old trap of having a great first set of few posts based on their experience over a number of years, then coming up without anything to write about. It’s musical equivalent is the sophomore slump with recordings: somebody’s first record is based on years of writing material and performing it, then for the second record that has to happen in a time constrained fashion, they struggle to come up with material!
      The overarching advice is to have multiple choices on what content to run. If you have a stash of already completed “evergreen” posts and there’s nothing you have to say right now, you can still maintain your publishing schedule. If you have something more compelling that’s fresh, write it and hold an evergreen post for later.

      • JoAnn says:

        Thanks for the clarification, Mike. I get the idea of “evergreen” posts. And, I know from experience why it is helpful to have a stash of them. Time to rebuild my “evergreen” pile.

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