Welcome to My Social Game Plan

Your One-Stop-Shop for All Things Digital Marketing

What’s up!? I’m Jonathan Payne, Founder and Author of My Social Game Plan,¬†where I’ve spent the last six years writing about digital marketing in an effort to help brands and marketers stay on top of the rapidly-evolving marketing landscape.

If you’re curious about how social media can help grow your business, but aren’t sure where to start, you’ve come to the right place.

My Social Game Plan is your one-stop-shop for all things digital marketing, with a heavy emphasis on social media.

My goal here is simple: you should walk away knowing a little bit more about social media marketing and understand how to work that knowledge into a broader digital marketing strategy for your business.

Below you’ll find my free Social Media Starter Kit. Take a look and feel free to reach out with questions!

Jonathan Payne, My Social Game Plan

What's a social game plan?

Think of a social media strategy as your offensive and defensive game plan entering a sports match.

Social Media Strategy

Social Media Offense

Offense is taking the initiative to score. In social, think of offense as the content you create, the brand story you tell, and the conversations you actively start. That could be…

  • Sharing your latest blog post on Facebook
  • Tweeting at a prospective customer to start a conversation with them
  • Holding a contest or giveaway for your fans
  • Creating a video that provides a solution to a common problem your customers experience

Social Media Defense

Defense is preventing the other team from scoring. In social, defense equates to anything that helps protect your reputation. That could be things like…

  • Replying to a customer’s tweet to resolve a negative experience they had with your company
  • Monitoring customer conversations on social and noting their pain points, so you can provide a solution
  • Managing online reviews to address negative feedback and highlight positive feedback

Social Media Starter Kit

Social media is a big, sometimes confusing arena.

But with a few handy tools and an understanding of what people expect from your company, you’ll be making leaps in no time.

Get your hands dirty using the social media starter kit below…

Social Media Starter Kit

Your Website and Blog

Your website and blog are home plate. Every single social media initiative you take should ultimately drive people back to your website, where you control the customer’s entire experience.

While there are free options like Tumblr or WordPress.com, they come with disadvantages.

  • You won’t have a dedicated domain name with any free service, which raises questions about your credibility.
  • You’ll have far fewer design and customization options.
  • Free means your website could flat out disappear if the platform goes away or makes changes that don’t favor your business.

My suggestion — and what we do here at My Social Game Plan — is build on WordPress.org (different from WordPress.com).

This allows you to self-host your website, so you have more credibility, you have unlimited customization options, and nobody can undercut your website overnight.

The Best Website Hosting Provider

I’ve used a few different domain and hosting providers over the years and, so far, Namecheap takes the cake. I’ve had zero downtime and their customer support has been awesome.

Namecheap speaks for itself — would you ever guess they have affordable domain names and hosting?

I know, shocking.

You’ll have an easy time setting up WordPress once you’ve bought a domain and their support team will take great care of you if you run into trouble getting started.

Namecheap Domain Names Hosting

Choosing Social Media Channels for Your Business

Every time you turn around, a new social network or social mobile app is taking the world by storm.

On one hand, you can’t and probably shouldn’t be everywhere all the time, but on the other hand, you never want to miss an opportunity to listen to and engage with fans of your brand.

So, solving the problem of choosing the right social media channels is crucial. Let’s do a quick rundown of today’s popular social networks…

Social Network Descriptions2

With a solid idea of what each social network offers, you can narrow down where to put most of your attention and effort. Think about your ideal customers:

  • Are they B2B or B2C?
  • Are they on the younger end of the age spectrum?
  • Are they visual and creative?
  • Are they more likely to watch a video or read?

After you’ve established who you want to reach, pick 2-3 networks as your main focus. Don’t worry too much about your selection, just make an educated choice. You can always expand your social presence if one channel isn’t working.

You’re ready to roll once you’ve chosen a few areas to focus. Now, let’s create some content!

Creating a Social Content Calendar

If you’ve ever taken a stab at social media marketing and fell off the wagon, you’re not alone.

Consistently posting high-quality, unique, and engaging content is a tough task.

There are a few reasons a social media content calendar will help you save time and your sanity…

  • Social media has lots of moving parts. On any given day, you might be updating four or five social networks with different content. That’s tough to track mentally.
  • We all get busy. With a content calendar, you’ll organize and create your content in bulk ahead of time. This keeps you from inevitably skip updating some days.
  • Consistency is the key to social media success and planning your content ahead of time is the key to consistency. A calendar helps you stick to your strategy!

With that said, let’s get to the good stuff!

Below is a link to download an awesome content calendar template from Hootsuite (scroll down to #4 on their list).

Scheduling Social Media Updates

It’s no secret that social media is time consuming and scheduling updates can go a long way in helping.

Worth noting, scheduling updates isn’t a “set it and forget it” strategy.

Instead, it’s a way to keep yourself organized and free a little more time, so you can start conversations and handle any issues with your followers in real-time, without losing track of your overall social media strategy.

Buffer - Social Media Scheduling Tool

There are tons of social media scheduling tools out there, but Buffer is by far my favorite.

From how easy it is to set up a schedule and start posting to their awesome support team and culture, Buffer tops the charts in all aspects.

I always recommend Buffer as a key element to a successful social media strategy. Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Pro tip: learn how you can automate your Twitter updates using Buffer!

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  • Which tools you should be using to manage your social media presence!
  • How simple automation using Buffer and IFTTT can help you get more Twitter followers!
  • How to have more free time to engage Twitter followers!
  • How and where to share your newly-published blog posts to get the most traffic, email subscribers, and attention!
  • What social media and digital marketing blogs I learn from (and you should learn from too).