Think back to when you began your business. Most likely it was just you, a dream, and a pencil. Do you remember what you wrote down on the first few pages of that legal pad? You were planning the conception of your baby and it was exciting. At that point, everything stemmed from an idea. Whether it would work, or not, hardly crossed your mind. All you wanted to do was map out a course for your fledgling company's future although, more likely than not, a compass hadn't even crossed your mind yet.
A marketing strategy for your business or brand speaks to creating an emotion around it. In order to tap into the social emotion, you first and foremost want to clearly define what the end product will be. When someone sees your logo, what do you want that individual to feel? You will set out to create triggers, images, memes, or copy that will instill a lasting impression in your target client or consumer. This is not accomplished in one day. Rather, it becomes a process which you will repeat daily. Everything you post will speak to that trigger, that emotion, that feeling. You will systematically define the proverbial dots and embark on a journey of joining them.
While planning your strategy you would be well served to do some research into what your clients and competitors are saying, how they're saying it, and in the case of your competition, what degree of success they're achieving. Social media listening is a parallel task to doing brand competitor analysis or customer surveys while drawing up your business plan. Why reinvent the wheel, right? It stands to reason that if it will work for one, it will work for the other. In this way you'll be prepared when it comes to raising brand awareness, selling, or creating brand loyalty and retention. Remember that these are each individual goals and should not be tackled as if they all achieved the same outcome. They don't.
So, what sort of person does it take to be successful at social media marketing? The answer, it turns out, lies with two words: "passion" and "honesty". If you are a business owner or the founder of an organisation, the two words would have featured saliently in your initial formulations as to how your baby would grow and mature into your eventual vision. Often, a social media manager will enter into a position having to "fake it till he/she makes it". If you, as an individual, are the type of person with an ability to empathise with another, it shouldn't be too difficult to absorb an impartation of passion for an industry, whether product or service based from your colleagues or superiors. Certain companies, like Apple or Google, aim to install this passion in their employees from their very first day. Honesty, it turns out, however, is a little more difficult. Often, this requires a degree of vulnerability from the individual as a way of projecting humanity into the brands' DNA which can be daunting for some. Regardless, it must be understood that nobody wants to communicate with a bot. Communication skills are essential when it comes to social media marketing. You will soon be found out if you make a habit of providing people with "canned responses" and it will do serious damage to your brand reputation.