With about two weeks left in the year, we’re looking and planning ahead – and you should be doing the same. It’s time to ask yourself, “what can I do in this last stretch of the year to schedule some marketing efforts to get ready for the first quarter?” What can businesses do to plan ahead now to have those strategies ready to hit the ground running at the beginning of the year? Chris and Pat discussed their answers to those questions on the latest episode of the Sip, Create, Repeat podcast.
Make Time To Get Time
Many people feel like social media and marketing are overwhelming, especially when they have never made an effort to do it in advance. In reality, planning will free up so much time to allow you to focus on your business, your goals and on yourself.
Consistency is Key
It will also provide a steady and consistent touch point with your customers and clients. The worst kind of social media accounts are the ones that are sporadic and inconsistent. In 2020, we made a huge effort, even from the agency side, to post consistently and it helped engagement rates on most of the platforms where we had low engagement previously. In creating a cadence in the way we put out content, we drove engagement rates up because audiences got used to the consistency. In some cases, that was via the day of the week; in others, it was time of day.
The closer you get to posting in real time, the more hectic and chaotic the process is. Instead, we are always trying to be two or three weeks ahead in planning and scheduling to avoid that frantic feeling. That way, when something pops up, you can then move that content around further into the schedule, also giving you additional flexibility because you have planned.
Fill Your Toolbox
Now is the time to find the tools to help build and maintain this consistent schedule. Something like Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel documents will work to map out the month. From there, we use tools like Facebook Creator Studio and HootSuite to schedule posts.
Some other free tool you can use includes Canva. The site will provide you templates for an array of graphic design needs like social media posts including Instagram posts, stories and more.
Another awesome website is Pexels. That site offers free stock photography. Lacking good photos is another pain point for a lot of businesses. Instead, Pexels allows you to download stock photos and use them on your social media, in your advertising and on your website. It also allows you to see a different version of your brand, but while still trying to be true to it.
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