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Social Media Strategy

A strategy is essential to social media success. It defines guidelines and goals and gives purpose to every post.

Pre-Strategy Work

Before starting to draft a social media strategy, take a step back. Evaluate the current state of your social media accounts. Make note of which platforms you’re using and how you’re using them in terms of content type, post frequency, and messaging tone. It’s also a good idea to analyze your follower growth and engagement on each platform.

Complete this analysis on similar brands, organizations, departments, and units. Identify what you like and dislike about their social media accounts – and why you feel that way.

From there, take a broader look at the landscape by researching social media news and trends. Make note of which platforms are projected to gain followers and which platforms are facing challenges. Which features are on the roadmap for these platforms? How are the audience demographics shifting? What kind of content is king? These insights are valuable.

Goals and Success

With a clear sense of the landscape, you’re ready to shape the direction of your social media strategy. Start by defining your goals. What are you trying to achieve with social media? From increasing web traffic to boosting sentiment, choose a few key goals to be the backbone of your strategy. Make sure the goals align with your overall communication strategy and brand.

Next, determine how you’ll measure the success of your goals. Set key performance indicators and decide what you’ll measure, why, and how often. Use this data to help drive social media decisions and updates to your strategy.

Style, Voice, and Content Guidelines

What is your social media presence’s personality? Determine this by setting guidelines for tone of voice and style. Your tone could be humorous or serious. Your style could be professional or fun—or maybe a combination of both.

Regardless, it’s important to include this information—with as much detail as you can—in your strategy. This will help your social media properties look, sound, and feel consistent.


Be realistic about implementing your social media strategy. Outline what you’ll need—meetings, tools, or other resources—to execute your strategy.

Additional Resources

Below are links to relevant resources shared at Social @ Michigan State events. See the meetings and workshops lists on the Campus Community page for additional information regarding these events.