Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The 4-1-1 on Social Media Calendars



You got the 4-1-1? (Insert hipster slang voice here.) It’s hard to know if you aren’t mapping out your social media and treating it like a real part of your marketing strategy, rather than the red-headed stepchild your boss’ grandson works on when he’s home from college or interning twice a week. Social media can seem deceptively easy: Click, post, tweet, voila, visibility and you’re done! But if you don’t have a calendar, how can you know if you’re following the 4-1-1 rule to be successfully social?

Content pundits coined the 4-1-1 rule to keep self-promotion from overwhelming social media channels, and savvy marketers live it. Simply put, 4 fun, entertaining, relatable posts or tweets or pics or snaps for every 1 hard promotion and every 1 soft promotion. So you’re still selling, but mostly not selling, at least in the strictest terms.




But how do you know if you don’t have a social media calendar? Here’s our 4-1-1 on creating one:

  • Pick your four types of updates: images, links, reshares, plain text/quotes. 
  • Choose your channels (ideally you’d start with three or less, such as Twitter and Facebook, then expand after you have a comfortable strategy rolling). 
  • Find your frequency (consider at least five and as many as 20 for Twitter, up to two for Facebook, for example) 
  • Map out your key events, business cycles, holidays. 
  • Start with a big-picture yearly calendar. Put in the items we mentioned above. Add in product launches, key industry events, repeatable items that happen every year and more. 
  • Move on to monthly. So as not to get overwhelmed, start with a quarter and get deeper into company goals for the month, marketing plan milestones, sales specials, outside or industry events. 
  • Delve down to daily. 
    • Who’s going to post what? 
    • How much of your content will be original vs curated (from outside sources, blogs, other posts and tweets, etc)? 
    • Can you find or develop content ahead of time? How much? 
    • How will you (or an agency) manage your posting? 
    • Will it be automated or manual? 
    • What services and tools will you use? 
    • How will you manage and develop your calendar? 
    • Will you have a key person or a team? 
    • Who will work on which channel and how often? 

And most importantly, how will you make all this happen without outsourcing? That’s an answer for the next post…

How do you get successfully social? Whether you pin, post, tweet, snap, chat or blog it, we’re happy to share our time-proven ideas for success. Contact Randy McDaniels, [email protected] or 309-346-7412.