Running an ecommerce business is never an easy feat, especially during the holidays. You’ll be busy fulfilling orders, engaging with customers, and handling other day-to-day operations. It is important to prepare for the influx of customers beforehand. You must have a plan to gain new customers and keep current ones engaged. Social media marketing is a great way to heavily influence current and potential customers. In fact, 202% more ecommerce orders came from social media in 2015.
Leveraging your social media channels to market your business is essential to having a successful holiday season. Don’t wait till you’re in the midst of the holiday frenzy to plan out your social media strategy. Think ahead and map out your strategy with a social media calendar. A calendar will allow you to develop a detailed plan and easily manage all accounts in one location. Here are the top benefits of using a social media calendar and tips to plan out your holiday social media marketing strategy:
Benefits of Using a Social Media Calendar
- Keeps you organized: Using a social media calendar will ensure your content stays organized across your many social channels. You can keep track of how often to post on each channel, who to target with certain advertisements, and what your overarching goals are for the season. By staying organized with a calendar, your social media won’t take a backseat to other business operations. You can make sure there is enough content to run an effective holiday campaign, and ensure you don’t miss any important dates or posts.
- Saves you time: During the height of the holiday season, the last thing you want to worry about is what to post on social media. By using a social media calendar and pre-planning your posts, you won’t have to worry about it. The calendar will have those posts ready. You will save yourself valuable time that you can put towards other business efforts.
- Creates a detailed plan: Having your social media strategy on a calendar will allow you to create a detailed plan you can follow. In turn, your content will be more effective. You can ensure the posts are relevant to your audience and that there is enough content for the entire holiday season. You can also research when is the best time to post for your business, rather than rushing to post something because you forgot. Also, you will have a record of everything to analyze and reflect on for next year’s holiday season. You can see what worked and what didn’t, and then apply those findings to future strategies. To ensure your plan doesn’t miss any festivities, our partner, Justuno, created this infographic with the most important dates for this holiday season:
Social Media Calendar Tips
Now, let’s start building your strategy for this year. Luckily for you, we’ve created a FREE social media calendar template for you to download (link at the bottom of this post). Our social media calendar template will allow you to plan content for each social channel, set and monitor goals for the season, and have an overarching plan month-to-month. By organizing your strategy in our calendar, you will be able to monitor your progress, create campaigns, and most importantly, be prepared with pre-constructed, quality content. To fill out your calendar, use these tips to craft your strategy:
- Use real data to plan your strategy. Basic data such as knowing your audience’s average age and where they’re located can make a significant difference in choosing which type of content and advertisements to use and spend money on. Use the following options to gather data about your audience:
a. Try the built-in tools on your social media platforms, like Facebook Insights, to pull data on your current social audience.
b. Use Google Analytics for extensive research about your website and current customers. Use this tool to find out which channel more traffic to your website, which posts are getting the conversions you want, and if your advertisements are leading to paid customers. If you’re new to Google Analytics, they offer a free tutorials.
- Create consistency across channels. Keeping a consistent voice across all of your social channels is important to creating a successful marketing experience. Use the same tone, imagery, and style across all channels to build a cohesive look. You can then filter customers from one platform to another via giveaways, cross promotions, and multichannel campaigns.
- Use a social media management tool. Once your social media strategy is on a calendar, use a tool like Hootsuite or Buffer to automate it. Scheduling your posts ahead saves time. You can use this extra time to be more active on your social channels by sharing and engaging with your audience.
- Be creative. Your competitors boost their social media game for the holidays, too. Help your posts stand out by getting creative. Use holiday-themed graphics, plan a virtual event, have a photo contest, or create a holiday-themed logo.
This holiday season, think two steps ahead and use a calendar to plan your social media strategy. Spending the time before the holiday rush to build out your strategy on a social media calendar. You will breathe easy knowing you’ve created enough quality content geared toward your audience for the entire holiday season.