Social Media Campaign vs. Social Media Strategy
Over the last day or two, it struck me that a lot of social media marketers havenâ€™t consciously considered the difference between a social media strategy and a social media campaign. Understanding the distinction is the key to long-term success in this space.
As a social media agency, we get asked for both, or we get asked for one by folks that need the other. So whatâ€™s the difference?
- Social media strategy: A social media strategy should always come before a social media campaign. Ideally, it should come at least six months before the social media campaign. In it, you re-evaluate your internal assets and begin to (a) analyze and (b) engage with the community, but you donâ€™t â€œaskâ€ for anything in return yet. We did this first for Ignite, and it pays huge dividends.
- Social media campaign: A social media campaign derives from a social media strategy. The major difference here is that now you (a) understand the audience that cares about your subject and where they gather, (b) youâ€™ve given quality information away and developed followers, andÂ© you now have measurable goals. Now youâ€™re activating people and trying to â€œgetâ€ something.
Too often, though people wait to start considering social media until the have a campaign, they need to achieve set goals and they need them now. The problem with that is that they donâ€™t have a social media base from which they can act. So we have to start by building a platform from which they can speak. Then we have to re-assess what they have to offer that is of genuine interest to a certain set of the population. Then weâ€¦ Well you get the ideaâ€¦
The problem is that all of that takes time. Time to create, but even more so time for Google to find it, index itâ€¦ Time for people to find it, care about it, share it.
Are there individual things you can do quickly with social media? Sure. But if you want a full social media campaign in the next year, you probably want to work on your social media strategy nowâ€”right nowâ€¦