This post is part of a series we’ll be writing on putting together your own social media strategy.

Assess, plan, then implement!

Our approach to social media is very much assess, plan and implement. What we don’t want is random stabs in the dark. We all make mistakes and we all regret hitting the submit button, but if we can make that whole process seem more formulated and run it off the back of a plan, at least we can measure our actions and adjust our strategy as needed.

We like to give our clients a clear set of guidelines which we have discussed and built up together, so they can run their social media with confidence and share the duties with their team.

To help you build your strategy we need to understand from what position we are starting, who our audience is already and with what social media channels we engage with them on. No doubt you will have the instagram app on your phone but then also login to twitter on the computer or tablet and I bet you’ve had to undertake password reset many a time?! Well with this audit we can gather all this information together and begin to put in place the processes which will save your time and gain you new followers.

If you haven’t downloaded the free social media audit template already, grab it here and follow on below.

Step 1: It’s all about the spreadsheet

Data required: Social Network, URL, Owner. Start with a “Google sheets” spreadsheet with a row for each social network and the columns specified above. It’s actually really important to keep track of this information and it will build a larger picture of your business. Oh and save you time in the long run I assure you.

Step 2: The Keep column

Head to Google (use private browsing) and search your for your business, we want to establish if you have imposters or competitors using your details. You will also get an idea how Google treats your social accounts, do you rank for them? Are you represented in a good/bad light based on your visible social media. You can add this information in the “Keep” column.

Step 3: It’s Mission critical

So what are you trying to achieve with each account? Work it out and write it down in a column for mission. This is a useful check to your business objectives and helps clarify the strategy.
A clear mission statement will help you focus on a very specific goal for Twitter, Instagram, or any other social network. When you’re wondering what to tweet or dealing with a challenging follower it will help steer you in the right direction.
You may decide at this stage that a particular account has no value to your business and in fact it can be closed. But before you can determine which social media networks are right for your business, you first need to know who your audience is and what they want.

Step 4: Is your Branding consistent?

So let’s now make sure that each of the remaining accounts all sing the same message. Your brand needs to be represented clearly and consistently across each account. Make sure you have a profile picture, cover photo, bio and strapline that fits your branding and also looks correct on each account. A badly sized profile image and a poorly written bio could be the first impression you didn’t wish to make. Capture it all in the brand column.

Step 5: Are you in Control?

One of the benefits of a social media audit is to take back control of your social media accounts, so you know who’s in control of each and what the passwords are. Its often a good opportunity to use a centralised password store.

Whats next..

Once you’ve carried out your audit you should have a good picture of every social account representing your brand or business, who runs or controls them and what purpose they serve.
You will also have a clear idea which accounts need to be updated and which may need to be deleted altogether.

let’s go ride…