Posted on 19th July 2019
I often get asked how to write an effective Social Media plan so I thought i’d write a little blog all about how I write mine…
Firstly, it isn’t complicated, there are no secret tips or tricks just a need for a little time and a clear head.
I use a blank monthly calendar template (you can find the one I use here) but they are available all over the internet – and fill in the days and dates myself to enable me to be totally flexible with when I start/finish my 4 weeks.
Maybe one of the things I find most valuable when it comes to sitting down to plan is the fact that every time I have an idea for a piece of content, someone asks me a question that I could answer on my social media, I go somewhere or do something exciting or I find a brand I love, I jot it down in the notes on my phone. This basically gives me a list of content ideas that I will use the following month. I don’t tend to stick to themes but by staying true to the services I offer my content stays cohesive.
Next, I list the content I want to create into the different categories that I use for everything. They happen to be the three strands of my business for InkPot & Press Media; Copywriting, Media Communication and Brand Relationships and then a few behind the scenes bits too. I also have a regular feature “Ask Me Anything” which covers one day a week. I do exactly the same for my InkPot Sports accounts – Social Media, Athlete Representation (PR) & Sponsorship.
Then the “fun” bit… I plot each content idea on my blank calendar (always in pencil) making sure no two days have the same theme but that everything works together. If I have any events, launches or firm things in the diary I’ll plot those first along with my regular features.
When it comes to different content on different platforms, I don’t worry too much about it. Sometimes I’ll pop the planned day’s content on Instagram and the next day’s on FaceBook and then switch them around the day after, but most of the time the same thing goes across all of my channels. I have different audiences on each (some overlap but I don’t think they mind) and so I am able to serve both groups individually. One thing I do sometimes do if I’m really pushed for time is automatically share from Instagram to FaceBook BUT I always edit the FaceBook post to ensure the tags work and the hashtags are removed.
I don’t use any scheduling tools, I prefer to use the native scheduler on FaceBook and I create drafts so they only take one click to post on Instagram – that way I keep complete control over my content, the platforms prefer it and my engagement is higher.
I try to complete my 4-week plans in plenty of time to allow me to batch create some of my content before the plan begins. I do still love to create reactive and instant posts on the day they are published but in order to save time and make sure I serve my followers I find pre-creating some posts helps hugely!
All of the above is what I have found works for me – if you can take some (or even all) of the processes I use and make them work for you I would be chuffed and would love to hear what’s worked for you too!
One thing I really do have to emphasise though – if I miss a day I no longer beat myself up! I made a conscious decision a year ago to make sure that my Social Media was working for ME rather than me working for it. If it doesn’t fit into a certain day then it doesn’t happen and you know what – the world doesn’t end. If your social media is a chore it is unsustainable and will inevitably not work in the ways that it could – keep it soulful and your goals realistic and I don’t think you can go too far wrong!