A solid social strategy is crucial for today’s business owners.

strong social strategyActually, a strong business strategy is what’s most important. Your social strategy should complement your overall business plan. It should serve as a tool to help you achieve your business-related goals.

As part of my previous job as a director of social media, I learned from others and researched on my own what it takes to be successful in today’s business landscape.

Below are four keys I believe are important if you’re seeking to incorporate social media into your business strategy.

1. Keep the ‘Social’ in Social Media

Be there for your audience. When you share a thought on Facebook, remember to check in from time to time to keep the conversation going.

Customers (and potential customers) are connected to businesses like never before. Responsiveness (or lack thereof) could be the deciding factor in determining with which company an individual wants to do business.

2. Focus on Your Mission

social strategyCaleb Gardner, the deputy digital director at Organizing for Action and BarackObama.com at the time he spoke at the 2015 Public Relations Society of America Spring Conference in Salt Lake City, believes mission-driven organizations are the future and encouraged attendees to identify their personal missions.

“When people know and understand you’re about more than making money,” he said, “they’re able to better identify with your brand.”

3. Work Toward an Objective

Caleb also advised us to think about what journey we’re asking people to come with us on. It makes sense that if you have a clear objective in place as a business owner, others who believe in the same thing are more likely to help you get there.

Whenever I speak to business owners about social media, I always start by asking one question: What is your objective? If you know that, you can formulate a social strategy that complements your mission.

4. Don’t Rely on a Social Strategy

Wait, what? Yes, social media, for as beneficial as it can be, still has a lot to prove. It’s an outstanding way to communicate and connect with new people. But be careful to not let it take away from your other proven business-building activities. And don’t let it be your business strategy.

That said, if you’re committed to providing value and taking a sincere interest in your audiences’ needs, social media can give you a definite advantage over business owners who don’t have a strong social presence.

Social Strategy: Call to Action

What is your personal mission statement? How do you incorporate that into your business? I encourage you to write it down and, if you feel comfortable doing so, please share it in the comments.

For me, my personal mission statement includes increasing my knowledge of the world around me.

Social media helps me achieve that goal. I’m able to read and learn about different technologies, cultures and social issues and apply what I learn in my job (as I did with this blog post).

How about you?

Note: A version of this blog post originally appeared on What’s Up, USANA? on May 14, 2015

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