Find your social media rhythm

Rhythm Nation

Kelly “Rags” Ragland is owner and operator of Rags to Stitches Productions, a holistic advertising-specialty company providing a range of services from web design and development to customized apparel.

Moving into a new year is always enlightening. Every year I take the time to look at the previous year and measure the elements of success along with identifying elements that need improvement, and I encourage others to do so. Invariably, every year I investigate things, it is quite remarkable.

Last year I discovered additional benefits of rhythm.  A constant drumbeat of online strategies that run on a weekly basis focusing on a specific weekly goal. I have written about keeping social media properties posting frequently and staying alive in your followers’ news feeds, and I have written about using an Internet Marketing Calendar to follow throughout the year to keep email marketing timely and effective. That creates an annual schedule that can be steady and successful.

Last year I took those strategies to the next level and applied them to a weekly schedule, created a rhythm, and stuck with it for the entirety of 2018. When December passed on to January, it was simply fascinating to discover that 2018 had more than doubled my online income from 2017. Happy New Year indeed!

A weekly schedule of tasks will vary according to anyone’s business model and their available time for productivity. My rhythm may not be the right beat for your drum, however, I’d like to share this with you for insight and creativity on applying your own weekly drum beat. A basic model to look at for consideration.

Starting Monday, grab the coffee and identify the goal for the week. It may be time for a back to school promotion or Mother’s Day. Is the weather hot or cold? What’s selling at the moment? You know your business best, and you know your target market. Use Mondays to put together a marketing plan for the week focusing on your specific goal.

Next, create an email promotion for the week and apply the usual email marketing strategies. A well-formatted, mobile-friendly email without too much copy but just enough to tell the story and invite the recipient to click through and discover more info. A good subject line is critical for getting recipients to open the email, and good copy with a clear call to action completes the foundation.

Schedule your emails for delivery. I have been running them on Tuesdays and Thursdays, targeting the U.S. East Coast at noon. Statistically, this has been good timing, as the afternoon rolls through each time zone and people run through their daily email routines. Also, once a week may not be effective. Twice a week seems to be a good balance, where three emails in one week may cause recipients to feel overwhelmed and unsubscribe.

Now for social media. You have your goal and email promotion ready to go, so it’s ready to apply to a social media strategy for the week. My schedule is for a global organization covering several time zones, so this may be way too busy for you, but you’ll get the hang of it.

I post to social media Monday through Friday at 3 a.m., 7 a.m., 11 a.m., 3 p.m., and 7 p.m., CST. This keeps the social media properties alive, breathing, and pumping a constant stream of media to the online masses. Going through each post and target time window, I find that the 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. posts catch the majority of eyeballs, so I use those for the current week’s promotion. The others dance in between humor, news, current events, and other items of interest to my followers to keep them engaged and blend a human element between promotional pitches.

Friday evening it is time to look into results. A quick look into your email statistics will show you how well your strategies played out. Open rates, click-throughs, and other insights can tell a story and guide you to what works and what needs improvement. Have a quick look at your social media stats. Which posts generated the most engagement? What generated more likes and shares? Which time periods have been effective? While 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. work for my target audience, I guarantee you a coffee company will be targeting the morning hours for theirs.

Reflecting on your week and what was positive and negative, you are prepared to start Monday again with some solid intel and modify your strategies as each week rolls along. Before you know it, you’ll have your own rhythm going and you’ll discover that you can do it all in a timely manner, working smarter and not harder. In the end, your drum beat will have been heard by more of your target audience and very likely convert to sales.