Locking Down the Strategy

I talk about working in the digital marketing space (specifically with social), but I wanted to take the time to really walk through my process.

The first thing I would say, is I try to constantly stay educated on trends by attending webinars, listening to podcasts, and working on certifications. A few months ago, I completed the Hootsuite Social Media Marketing certification course. Their Advanced Social Strategy certification and HubSpot’s certification trainings are next on my goal list. There are so many sources available today—both free and paid.

Outside of staying educated, I have a few different systems: offline databases, editorial calendars, etc. Depending on the project type, I use Google Sheets and/or a simple Excel/Access database. I also now use the EPIC BLOG one-year editorial calendar.

The idea is to get the thoughts on paper. Everything has a different goal or purpose. So I’m not only platform-specific, but account-specific. For example, my Animedancer87 Twitter account is for candid discussion of everything I find interesting. People know I post multiple times a day and RT continuously.

My personal Twitter account is for marketing discussions and resources. Most know that I keep it for occasions where I’m just going to post a handful of responses so the content will be easier to find at a later date. Following the typical best practices in regards to niche, KPIs, etc.—I’m more intentional with subject matter for work and more spontaneous for personal content.

With work, I have a dedicated hard copy editorial calendar with an Outlook calendar backup. Emails, SNS post subjects, etc. are all color coded for each day. I check off the list as the work is completed and I have sections for tracking outstanding reports and stats. I plan everything out a month at a time and have set times for the standard posts.

For my personal projects, I keep it at the subject level. So a month’s calendar only has the topics I’d like to cover, without a specific date. That way, as I see news and/or find inspiration as I’m out and about, I just write a bit with the intention of having everything completed by month’s end. Those that subscribe to my blog are away that I now only send one recap post a most with links to everything I’ve covered.

It’s just how my mind works best.

No matter the approach, I’m still following the same process:

  1. Brainstorm subjects I’d like to cover.
  2. Break those down into categories.
  3. Assign time frames for each post.
  4. Have an internal KPI tracking method before I move into the next month.

How thorough do you make your digital strategy plan? Are you more spontaneous or intentional with contact?