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Why You Need Both a Proactive and Reactive Social Media Strategy

Social media managers have a unique role that requires a great deal of agility. A successful social media strategy is made up of both proactive components, like strategy and campaign planning, and reactive components, like utilizing real-time events and opportunities.

How can you achieve a healthy balance of both proactive and reactive social media marketing? These six activities will help shape your understanding.

Developing a Social Media Strategy: Proactive

Why You Need Both a Proactive and Reactive Social Media Strategy

Developing a social media strategy for the month, quarter or year is the first step in proactive social media management.

In order to drive the best results, marketers need to be able to holistically look at their past performance. Depending on your goal, whether it’s driving brand awareness or leads, using social analytics will give you a great idea of what works, what doesn’t and how to optimize for the future.

Newsjacking: Reactive

Screen Shot 2015-06-02 at 12.41.13 PMNewsjacking (jumping on realtime trends and event coverage) is a great way to expand your audience, drive engagement and, ultimately, foster more brand awareness. For whatever reason, newsjacking gets de-prioritized when people are putting together their social media plans. However, newsjacking has led to some of the biggest moments in social media marketing history (i.e. Oreo’s Super Bowl win, Ellen’s selfie, etc). Newsjacking is what people gravitate towards on social and it’s extremely challenging to plan for these things. Instead, keep an eye on trends happening in your city or across the globe using Trendsmap or social listening tools like Hootsuite.

Planning Your Campaigns: Proactive

Nobody should enter a social media campaign without knowing where you want to go. Before you Tweet or post, make sure you have an objective, goals and a tactical plan. During your planning phase, make sure you’re consulting past data to identify what works, what doesn’t and where you can do better.
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Interacting With Your Audience: Reactive

Let’s not forget — the point of social media is to be social. Nobody enjoys being broadcasted to without any interaction. When you see an opportunity to reach out to a follower or someone in your community, do it! Any gesture, no matter how big or small is usually appreciated. In addition, keep an eye out on customer service requests. Social media is one of the most convenient places for your customers to ask questions, voice concerns, etc., so you should be responsive. If you’re part of a bigger social team, I would recommend triaging these customer service requests using Hootsuite’s Team feature.

Content Planning: Proactive

Content is at the cornerstone of every social media strategy. What types of content does your audience like to consume? What kind of content is best aligned with your objectives? Which content lends itself better to this network or that network? These are all questions you should head off at the pass, before you throw your content team into the production phase. Dig into the data (if you have Simply Measured, I recommend running pivot tables on the Mentions tab) and find out which pieces are working best for the metrics you care about (engagement, traffic, downloads, etc.).

Social Listening: Reactive

It’s always important to stay in touch with what people are saying about your brand and your competitors. Set up a dashboard in a listening tool, like Hootsuite or Tweetdeck, and track keywords that are related to your brand or industry. This will not only keep you in the know, but will also give you lots of opportunities to interject in conversations that are relevant.

Your social media strategy should have structure, but be agile and ready to jump at a moment’s notice. Keep these 6 things in mind as you plan out your strategy, campaigns or day-to-day.

Jade Furubayashi

My name is Jade and I'm the Social Media Manager for Simply Measured. We can find common ground in Beyoncé and Chipotle burrito bowls.

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