Does Your Social Media Strategy Need an Overhaul?

By Amaris Modesto, Holly Fuller

Given the unexpected twists and turns of 2020, your company’s social media strategy may need a slight facelift or complete overhaul to stay relevant to your audience. With that in mind, ICR’s social media team recently attended Sprout Social’s virtual summit that focused on strategies for building a 2021 brand roadmap. Speakers included executives from companies like Peloton, Univision, NAACP, Squarespace, HangarFour, and many more.

Here are some of the tips and predictions they shared:

Given this rapidly changing environment, shift from a monthly content plan to a weekly or even daily schedule tied to the current news cycle. If 2020 has taught us one thing, it’s that there are a lot of things we can’t plan for. Being nimble has been key since March, and will only continue into next year as companies and partner agencies change their processes to include more efficient content approvals, regular social listening, and additional resources to address content creation needs.

Being quiet every now and again is okay. Not every social issue is an open brief. Carefully consider your company’s contribution to the conversation and/or cause, and then take the time to formulate a thoughtful response. If that means taking more time to join social conversation, that is fine. Quality over quantity is key.

Figure out who you are. This sounds like an existential challenge, and in some ways, it is. Defining your thesis and what you are working to accomplish can help you better understand what your social media content should focus on, what platforms you should be using, and what audiences to target. Your content plan should ladder up to this thesis.

Use social media data to better understand your audience and create your 2021 marketing plan. People across sections of society are adjusting to a new normal and spending a lot more time on social media. As marketers, this is an optimal time to use available tools (like Sprout Social) to study social media data, including engagement, audience behaviors (e.g., what things they like, what they are concerned about, how they want to connect), what competitors are doing, activity peaks, etc., and then use that data to draw insights that inform your content plan.

Don’t be afraid to do a full overhaul. Is what you used to do still relevant, or do you need to switch it up? This year, we saw experiential content take a hit with fewer public events, the daily news cycle speed up exponentially, and brands temporarily pause their social media advertising. With this, marketers have had to adapt their content strategies, including topics, tone of voice, posting schedule and post copy/creative to reflect the changes. As these changes happen, take time to evaluate everything you’re doing on social media and change it as needed.

“Social is a data set of real time conversations that can be leveraged across all aspects of business.” — Leslie Pinckney, Omnicom Experiential Group. We have unfettered access to how people think, how they behave, and their tics. Through social media data we can find quick answers that help address business challenges. To the extent that companies are already doing extensive traditional research, social media insights can help to provide continuity between the studies.

In 2021, we can expect more CGI-created social media influencers. While brands navigate the challenges of securing real people to participate in campaigns given social distance guidelines, computer-generated influencers have generated significant traction over the last two years, and they are beginning to replace real people. This is expected to grow next year, particularly in the experiential marketing world.

To learn more about Sprout Social’s content management and social listening/analytics capabilities visit sproutsocial.com.

As we continue to help you understand the latest happenings in social media, we’ve also put together the following digest of recent social media news:

Facebook Is Removing Its Restrictions on Text Content in Facebook Ad Images

Source: Social Media Today

Digital marketers familiar with Facebook’s advertising platform are well aware of the channel’s strict 20 percent rule for the amount of text allowed in graphics for ads and promoted posts. However, Facebook is slowly phasing out this requirement. This article explains why this is big news for Facebook advertisers and how this could positively impact your  social advertising strategies.

Pinterest breaks daily download record due to user interest in iOS 14 design ideas

Source: TechCrunch

If you’ve updated to iOS 14 and are looking for guidance on how to customize your iPhone’s home screen, you’re not alone. Throughout the past couple of weeks, Pinterest has seen record global daily downloads as users seek design inspiration for custom icons and widgets. Check out the details of Pinterest’s speedy rise up the App Store’s top charts.

The Best Times to Post on Social Media in 2020 [Infographic]

Source: Social Media Today

Are you curious what time you should post on social media channels for optimal engagement? While each Instagram account’s audience is unique and therefore can vary behavior-wise depending on a variety of factors, these bite-sized tips and insights on general user behavior from Social Media Today and Zenesys can be a great place to start.

If you have thoughts, questions or comments about this digest, please reach out to Amaris Modesto or Holly Fuller.