We know how difficult it must be to always come up with new and interesting social media posts. Your customers require more engagement from social, which is why the team at Market Your Craft put together 60+ ideas to lead your business in designing a content calendar for August that helps drive tasting room traffic, increase customer clicks and earn new sales. We call it Social Setting and the goal is to give you confidence that you’re getting the most out of social each month. In it you’ll find timely and topical business talking points; lesser-known craft holidays worth messaging; and recos on ways to share your brand story, culture and energy with followers and fans.
Take me straight to August’s calendar >
This week we’ll look at the important role social media already plays in the marketing mix for your craft beverage brand and how to connect your content back to a greater marketing strategy, maximizing your social ROI while growing engagement.
- the basics – using social for storytelling
- getting crafty – holidays, observances, grab bag
- behind-the-curtain – calendar your content
Many craft beverage brands are missing opportunities to convert followers to customers on social because posts are uninspired, inconsistent or irrelevant. What’s needed is a deliberate social marketing strategy that defines the objectives, tone and personality of your messaging. Successful brands then look at the calendar and other topics to message their brand story in a meaningful, authentic way, leaving room for impromptu posts that add energy to their BRAND VIBE. Maximizing the return on your team’s social investment comes from listening, analyzing and reporting not only your own efforts, but those of your peers and competitors.
the basics – using social for storytelling
Why are you and the team spending time on social? Is it to keep up with your competition? To drive traffic to on-site events? Or something else? Social media is a content distribution channel within your overall marketing plan, similar to your website, advertising and tasting room experience. Posts and engagement should support your broader brand story so customers have a familiar experience. It helps to answer some basic questions about your company and the part social will play in telling your story to customers:
|What is your brand story
Which social channels matter to you
Who will be managing social content
What are your social goals
What is your brand voice/personality
|How do you measure success|
How do you want people to feel
Which brand(s) do you follow
Who are you talking to
A clearly-articulated brand story helps you design an engaging experience for your customers across all marketing channels, including social media. For an even more complete review of the Why behind your craft beer brand, download the free workbook: Brand Vibe – Writing an Impactful Brand Story.
getting crafty – holidays, observances, grab bag
When it comes to identifying content worth sharing, where is a craft beverage brand to start? Is it enough to post photos of your last event? Maybe. Perhaps the new addition to your facility? Couldn’t hurt. Truth is, there’s no single social posting strategy that works for every brand. Ideally your fans, followers and customers will help direct your social efforts, engaging more or less in content that you post as it interests them. If you’re listening closely enough, you will also pick up on cues as to where they want your craft brand to go, from product to marketing and everything in-between.
Starting with a clearly-defined brand story and understanding of your target audience, it’s easier to pick and choose the content that makes sense to post. You will soon find the sweet spot is where customer and brand relevance meet. Many craft beverage brands have been successful engaging their social audience by posting content in the following categories:
|State and Federal Holidays
Events and Sponsorships
It’s important to put yourself in the shoes of your customer when planning content, which is sometimes difficult to do! What’s meaningful to you may not be to them, and their non/response will be a clear indicator of whether you connected at some level. Take pride out of the equation and make sure your content calendar is relevant to your audience. Download over 60 content ideas to help you get started!
behind-the-curtain – calendar your content
The assumption by many craft beverage brands is that to be successful at social you must post content at least every day, if not multiple times a day. Some brands may claim that to be the case, but when asked about how they measure success and the ROI of their efforts, most do not have a clear idea of social performance. Let alone the impact on traffic, engagement and sales. Which is why the team at Market Your Craft likes to start craft beverage brands off with a 2×3 posting schedule: two calendared posts per week on each of three social channels (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, where relevant). Scheduling can be as simple as completing a Microsoft Word calendar template online, so long as it’s clear what and when posts will occur. Once you establish a routine of posting consistently across all your social accounts, you can start to fine-tune your messaging by social account (Facebook for longer-form text and visual content; Instagram largely for visual content; and Twitter for short-form, timely updates).
After about a month of posting, your business will start to see patterns of engagement that will help direct your future content creation/curation and posting frequency. The team at Market Your Craft has seen this firsthand with clients using social management tools like Sprout Social to access listening, publishing and performance data from a single, intuitive interface. While available to everyone, we partnered with Sprout Social in 2018 to provide craft beverage brands with the same best-in-class tools used successfully by over 20,000 companies worldwide. We’re happy to pass-through our partner pricing and take a back seat to managing content if you’d like. Or we can help get you up-and-running quickly by setting up the platform and initial reporting for your team. We can even draft a full calendar of social posts for your brand to approve and publish to take one more thing off your plate.
Social media is a business imperative for craft beverage brands. Whatever your approach, our goal is to help you take more ownership of your social setting with a deliberate content strategy; timely and relevant messaging points; and tools to help manage listening, publishing, engagement and reporting.