Skip main navigation

New offer! Get 30% off your first 2 months of Unlimited Monthly. Start your subscription for just £29.99 £19.99. New subscribers only. T&Cs apply

Find out more

How businesses create social media marketing campaigns

When you’ve got a message to share with your intended audience, it takes more than simply publishing to social platforms and hoping it gets seen.
Lisa Salem: I’m Lisa Salem. I’m a freelance social media strategist and creative. So the first thing I think about is, what are the objectives of the campaign? What’s worked before? What hasn’t? Review other campaigns, or just generally how our social media has done in the past. I think about who the audience is that we’re trying to reach and what tactics we might use to reach them. I look at what other people are doing in a similar space and see what’s worked for them, and to think about whether I want to duplicate that. And I think about how I can measure our objectives. So what are the sort of key performance indicators that we might use?
We will also review the assets that we have in archive that we might be able to use to turn into content. And then we compare that to the objectives of the campaign and our audience stereotype/prototype and see where the two things can fit.
Danielle Haynes: My name is Danielle. I work on the social media team at FutureLearn. We’re in charge of creating brand awareness for FutureLearn and letting people know about the awesome products we have, and about FutureLearn as a whole. Your typical social media activity is probably going to be about overall brand awareness and bringing attention to your business as a whole. Whereas a campaign is going to be a collection of posts with one central theme and a central goal as well. So that may be about bringing attention to a new product that you have, or bringing attention to a discount that you have for deals and trying to get more sales.
An example would be at FutureLearn when we had our new product called Unlimited, a subscription service. We did a series of posts over a few weeks talking about Unlimited and letting people know about the new product we had. When you’re creating your social media strategy, one of the most important things to consider is make sure you have a strong objective that lines in with your overall company strategy. You want to make sure that you have a strong call to action on all of your posts so that you’re directing your audience to your website or asking them to share your content.
So when I’m thinking about which platforms to use, I think about where the audience is going to be. There are different places where different people hang out, and sometimes at different times of day. So I definitely think about going to where the audience already is. What is good content on one platform isn’t necessarily good content for another platform. So on Facebook, which is the only place where you sign in as yourself, emotional content, something that sort of moves people, is going to be more effective. Whereas, let’s say on Twitter, you would want to start more conversations and have more timely things because it’s much more about being in the moment.
When you’re watching YouTube, you’re in a bit more of a passive mood, willing to go down a lot of rabbit holes and just relax. Instagram is a really versatile platform. It’s more curated. It’s more inspirational. A bit glitzier sometimes, if that’s the kind of audience you have. But then you also have the stories which are raw and intimate. And they take over your whole feed. And so you have the opportunity to command somebody’s attention in a way that you don’t do when you’re competing with everything else that’s on someone’s feed. People also like other places that are a bit less used, like SoundCloud, because they’re less mediated. And so they trust what’s on there more.
And they feel more of a sense of discovery. And then they have more of a relationship with that content. And they feel more ownership over their interactions with you. So there’s lots to consider each time you’re deciding where you’re going to put your content or what content you’re going to create for each platform.
My top tips for running a social media campaign are, firstly, always think like a user. We’re all users first. We’re all consumers of social media. If you want to make good content, think about the person on the other end, and put that hat on every time you make something. Secondly, always know your objectives. All content should have a purpose. And obviously, all campaigns have a purpose. So create meaningful content with an objective. And lastly, know your audience really well. Get under their skin. And create content that speaks to one person. And the odds are then, it will likely speak to a lot of people.

When you’ve got a message to share with your intended audience, it takes more than simply publishing to social platforms and hoping it gets seen.

Having a social media plan and campaign allows you to target messages effectively, schedule activity and think about objectives and measurement.

Now it’s time to build on your understanding of social media campaigns by exploring how businesses approach making them. In this video, two social media experts, Lisa Salem and Danielle Haynes will talk about how they create effective social media campaigns that connect with audiences.

Give feedback:

How do you feel about the challenges of social media planning?
Share your thoughts in the Comments section.
This article is from the free online

Create a Social Media Marketing Campaign

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Reach your personal and professional goals

Unlock access to hundreds of expert online courses and degrees from top universities and educators to gain accredited qualifications and professional CV-building certificates.

Join over 18 million learners to launch, switch or build upon your career, all at your own pace, across a wide range of topic areas.

Start Learning now