How to create a social content strategy for your business
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HOW TO CREATE A
SOCIAL CONTENT STRATEGY
FOR YOUR BUSINESS.
Købmagergade 45, 2. • DK-1150 Copenhagen • falconsocial.com • firstname.lastname@example.org 2
Benefits of creating a social content strategy 4
Get started: Define your story 5
Purpose of your content 6
Tone of voice 7
Content planning and creation 9
Mapping audiences 9
Content themes 9
Content calendar 10
Tracking performance 11
Organizing your team 13
Setting up your team in Falcon 14
Købmagergade 45, 2. • DK-1150 Copenhagen • falconsocial.com • email@example.com 3
“IT’S IMPORTANT THAT CONTENT IS CAREFULLY PLANNED OUT
to ensure that you reach your objectives for social. When content
is created on an ad-hoc basis, you risk communicating content
that’s off-brand, or off target for your long-term objectives.
Planned content promotes regular posting, and allows for
a consistent workflow to maintain the quality of the content
that you create. Most people working in social media have
busy schedules, and benefit from routines and established
workflows; great content flourishes from this consistency. “
Helle Tyllesen, Head of Customer Strategy, Falcon Social.
4Købmagergade 45, 2. • DK-1150 Copenhagen • falconsocial.com • firstname.lastname@example.org
BENEFITS OF CREATING A
SOCIAL CONTENT STRATEGY.
Determining and documenting a social content strategy guarantees that your brand is conveyed correctly
and consistently over time. It’s crucial to have a strong understanding of your target audience, their needs,
and most importantly, what they can gain from your content.
Optimize time spent
communication & content
Keep daily execution in
line with your objectives
for social media
Build a narrative around
Increase the amount
of interactions and
Track performance and
GET STARTED: DEFINE YOUR STORY
Start by defining the overarching story surrounding your brand. Often, inspiration can be taken from the
mission defined in your business plan and/or social media strategy. What’s at the heart of your brand, and
how are you trying to make a difference?
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For Nike, their mission is “To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete”. This statement acts as a
guiding rule for all their activity, including the content they distribute on social media.
Once you’ve defined your mission, you need to get into more detail about what kind of content supports
your overall narrative. You need to determine the pillars of content, so to speak. Define 4-5 content themes
that will make up your content calendar and guide your content creation.
Looking at Nike’s content, a few of their content themes could be defined as something like You vs. You,
Across the Globe, and Play Anywhere.
With their powerful and visually striking images imbued with mantras of “just do it” spirit, they are crafting
a powerful story for their brand. Note how all themes support the overall mission.
You vs. You Across the Globe Play Anywhere
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PURPOSE OF YOUR CONTENT.
Content is one of the key parts of the tool kit when working towards your long-term goals for social (along
with e.g. advertising, community management and internal alignment). Content should always be aligned
with the social media strategy, and with the goals you’ve defined. That is, if your overall goals for social focus
on awareness and engagement, tailor your content accordingly.
Creating content deliberately and thoughtfully, and giving forethought to the action you want the user to
take with your content, creates targeted and powerful messages.
“Good content always has an objective, it is created with intent.”
Ann Handley, Author and Content Marketing Expert
Examples of content purposes:
• Reach - typically, these are messages designed
for paid distribution
• Engagement - actions like comments, likes,
shares, retweets, repins, favorites etc.
• Consumption - photo views, video plays,
Twitter’s detail expands, Facebook’s “other
• Insight - for instance, product feedback or
asking your users which kind of content they
would like to see from you
• Conversion - whether it be converting to fan/
follower, event sign ups, offer and promo code
claims, or newsletter sign ups
• Traffic to website or App Store and Google Play
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TONE OF VOICE.
Social media is a fragmented narrative consisting of atoms of content relating your brand’s story to the
world. For that reason, and because your audience is bombarded with so many messages, you need to
establish a clear profile. In essence, being a brand means standing out from the rest.
Tone of voice is a crucial means to that end. You need to define the guidelines for how you communicate
verbally on social media.
To get you started, here are a few tips.
• Think about the values and brand image you want to project. Which type of language supports that image?
• Write down a short description of how you communicate. This could be an example: “our brand provides
down-to-earth expertise and accessible inspiration on cooking and food. Our brand is not about fine
dining, but the quality everyday meal that you enjoy with family and friends....”
• Write a list of rules of thumb to guide your content creation. These are typically a mix of general best
practice and company-specific issues. For instance, we communicate in short and simple sentences, we
don’t use slang or jargon, we don’t use these particular words when talking about our products.
In our work, we often find that tone of voice is taken to mean verbal tone of voice. In fact, pinning down your
visual tone of voice is even more important, because most social media networks prioritize visual content.
Here are some tips for getting your visual tone of voice right.
• Think of the brand image that you want to cultivate on social. Which values or attributes do you want
to exude? Quality, Scandinavian design, retro feel? Then create visual imagery projecting these qualities.
If you’re a packaged foods product wanting to project freshness and quality, create images with your
product situated next to fresh ingredients to support this claim.
• Use the design manual of your company to pin down details surrounding the use of fonts/weights, logo
and color palette (use RGB codes, so everybody gets it right). Specify how all these aspects are to be used
• Speak the language of the platform. On social, it is important to be authentic and human, so be cautious
with the use of commercially loaded material like stock imagery (polished photo studio feel) or POS (Point
Of Sale) material - it usually doesn’t translate well. Focus on real people and situations, and authentic
• Guard your visual tone of voice! Don’t let the pace of your day or your workload compromise your
tone of voice by choosing poor imagery. Social media is a fragmented narrative, and to stand out from the
plethora of messages out there, you need a clear profile.
• User-generated content often won’t meet the standards you’ve defined. If you curate content and post
it on your page, determine what you are OK with, and what doesn’t meet standards and shouldn’t be
widely distributed (note: this doesn’t mean you should remove pictures that users upload to your page or
profile. It refers only to whether you should repost it or not).
TIP: Falcon’s Content Pool helps you streamline
your tone of voice. Upload stock content for
future usage and to keep track of content posted
in various markets or on various pages. It acts
as an archive for previous content, and stock
hub for future content. Essentially, it’s assets
management for your social presence.
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TIP: Learn how your segmented content
performs with Facebook’s “dark”, or
unpublished posts that allow you to
promote posts not publicly visible while
testing performance. Test content on a
carefully defined target group, such as non-
fans that match your target group criteria.
CONTENT PLANNING AND
Planning ahead is paramount in social media. As the person responsible for social media, you’re typically
heavily strapped for time and wear many hats. To ensure steady flow of quality content, you need to
establish tactics around executing your content strategy. The tactics consists of mapping audience
segmentation, content themes, planning your content calendar, tracking performance and organizing
Consider segmenting your content based on the
different levels of target group relationship with
your brand or vertical. That is, create some content
for followers/ and fans, and other content for non-
fans. Both groups should always match your actual
target group. Consider crafting content tailored for
the different steps of the customer lifecycle, if this
makes sense for your brand.
When looking at your content themes, carefully
consider the type of content you will be creating. As
a rule of thumb, good content is a mix of curated,
creative and commercial. Depending on your
brand and your position in the market, this balance
should be individually defined, but be careful not to
post too much commercial content, as it tends to
cause audiences to lose interest.
Taking our previous example, Nike’s content
themes are very closely related to each other.
Content themes don’t have to be abstract or
conceptualized. Other examples of content themes
could be Sustainability, Behind the Scenes, or
Home Improvement Tips. Keep in mind, though,
that the more uniquely defined your content
themes are, the more your content will stand out
from the rest.
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The content calendar is an overview of the content going out on social channels in the next period of time.
Typically, content calendars span a period of a month or two. Anything longer than that and you run the risk
of posting outdated messages, so stick to a month at a time. Naturally, you should keep an eye on activities
further into the future than two months, so you can properly plan the execution of campaigns and other big
events, but don’t create actual updates for longer than two months at a time.
When working with content, try mapping out the year in content - how many posts a week do you have, and
how many pieces of content does that add up to? Most companies underestimate the time and resources
necessary to keep up a steady flow of content throughout the year, so think about what you’re able to do and
your dry spells throughout the year - what do you do then?
You can’t plan ahead to the same extent when
working with curated content, it requires more ad
hoc work. But if you’ve covered your creative and
commercial content in advance, you have more time
to spend sourcing content. Remember your content
themes and overall narrative when
A content calendar consists of the following:
• Creative: Image, text, link, video
• Date and time of posting
• Purpose of content
• Content theme
TIP: If you work in a tool like Falcon Social, you
can create your content calendar within the
platform. This makes it easy to collaborate on
content and to hone content over time (edit and
adjust). You can create drafts, send them for
approval or proofreading by a team member and
once they’re finished, schedule them for posting.
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There are two sides to tracking and analytics on social media. One is to track progress and prove value (ROI),
the other is to understand and learn more about your content and your community, all with the purpose of
revising your approach to improve performance.
Tracking top-level objectives: Measure performance and value
Taking a top level look at the performance of your social media presence is key when proving the value (ROI)
of social media and to track progress with your long-term social media objectives. Many companies find
this to be a very elusive thing, but it doesn’t have to be. Look beyond social metrics when trying to prove the
value of social. Broader digital metrics like page visits and dwell time on your website make excellent KPIs for
determining volume and quality of your social media efforts.
The actual metrics you want to focus on depend on your objectives and social media strategy. Here are some
of our favorites:
Define the various conversion targets
along the sales cycle. Don’t simply
think of the end goal in terms of direct
revenue, but determine the value of softer
targets such as event sign ups, brochure
downloads, campaign offer claims etc.
Quality and value of traffic
For traffic generated by social media, use a
web analytics tool to determine the value
and quality of this traffic. How do social
users compare to other types of users in
terms of page views, bounce rate, session
duration, conversion? You may be able
to convince your boss to allocate more
budget to social if he sees that conversion
rates for social are twice what they are for
Traffic to website or other off-social
destinations. Google Analytics already
gives you data on traffic referral, but
you can go much further than that with
Falcon’s URL Builder to create custom
URLs with tracking (UTM tags or similar).
This way, you can track amount of clicks
and connect traffic to your website.
This directly translates to the good old
awareness or exposure factor.
Development of community
Is your fan/following count increasing, declining or remaining steady? Focus on the composition
and general health of the fan group, not mere numbers acting as a vanity metric. A constant
increase in fans is not necessarily the best for your brand.
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Content Performance: Analyse, Learn, Revise...and repeat
Social media changes constantly, so what worked 6 months ago when you created your social content
strategy may not work today. Also, target groups are people of flesh and blood and they will defy your
preconceptions of what they might like and not like.
So, make sure you’re regularly looking at data to determine if you need to tweak your approach. To do so,
use actionable insights and data displaying the details of content performance. Here, you’re looking at the
micro level view, whereas measuring performance and value deals with the macro, big picture of your social
Here are a few things to keep your eye on:
• Negative feedback
Facebook in particular provides excellent data on how your content is being received. People tend to
focus on “positive” metrics like Likes, Comments and Shares, but this one tells it to you straight. If a
substantial part of your audience chose to hide your posts, unlike your page or report your content as
spam, you need to take a closer look at that piece of content. Highly popular content will always generate
some negative feedback.
Instead of placing all emphasis on interactions like comment/like/shares, you should look at
consumptions. The best content doesn’t necessarily generate a lot of interactions. Often, you’d rather
have them click a link to your website than like the post. Consumptions include photo view, clicks and
video plays. Facebook has recently introduced detailed stats for videos (uploaded directly to Facebook),
so now you can measure how long users have been watching your video, which parts of your video are
particularly popular. Even more insight for you to drive action on refining your content.
This one is hardly a surprise, metrics such as favorites, likes, comments/replies, retweets, shares are still
a key way to gauge performance of your content - if engagement is a key component of your social media
strategy, that is.
• Type/composition of post
When are you seeing the best response to your content? Images, hashtags, videos, plain text or link posts?
What about the length of your text? There are rules of thumbs for this, but your community might be
different, so track and revise and keep doing so.
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ORGANIZING YOUR TEAM.
Creating good content requires streamlining your organization to prepare for the pace and nature of
social media communication. Social media is one of the fastest forms of communication and transcends
departments. For this reason, social media cannot be the sole responsibility of one department; all parts of
the organization must carry a part of the load.
Create a basic internal structure for social media success:
• Define roles within your organization. Know who
is responsible for producing content, publishing
posts, approving content, and who serves as first
responders in a crisis.
• Within each department, appoint contact people
to expedite social media requests and problems.
• Set up back up contacts for illness, time off, and
time zone differences, and clearly communicate
the designated parties.
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The reasons for setting up a team structure are straightforward:
1. Facilitating a fast response
First, you need quick access to key stakeholders within your organization. When opportunity knocks or a
crisis erupts, there’s no time to jump through the hoops of your organization’s hierarchy; you need direct
access. These key departments include Legal, Marketing, PR, Product Development, IT, and Customer
Service -- your stakeholders.
2. Source content
Social media runs on storytelling, and the most telling content are usually those small, captured
moments that show your company’s human side and personal success stories. They may not reach the
Marketing, PR, or Social Media departments, or headquarters. These are customer-facing roles such as
store personnel, technicians, and other people “in the trenches” - your ambassadors.
3. Communicate that social media success is a company-wide achievement
If the company’s social presence is not universally and continually communicated as valuable, your
organization, especially those furthest from your marketing teams, may be slow to support or
contribute to your efforts. Send the message that an open and healthy company presence is useful and
appreciated, by having a process for capturing staff information.
Admin Moderator Editor Team leader Content Creator
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SETTING UP YOUR TEAM IN FALCON
Falcon supports your team structure, whatever it looks like. Our user model is completely flexible and allows
you to customize team roles. For instance, your colleague in PR could be a Team Leader on your Twitter
channel where she needs to be able to respond quickly and interact with press, but only have Moderator
access to Facebook.
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Drawing upon every facet of your company, your social presence can bring the best of your organization
to the forefront. When there are clear directional lines between the needs of your audience and the
corresponding content, it’s usually representative of a company that has distinct, functioning social goals.
The actualization of good social content strategy becomes a tactical, consistent voice that your audience
will recognize, and that will proactively meet their needs. This voice isn’t a bland industry message, it’s an
approachable human resource that naturally points the right customers in the right direction.
We hope this handbook will be of service to you in shaping your organization’s social content strategy, or in
giving you some inspiration for further points of discussion.
Thanks for reading!
Visit our website to learn more about Falcon Social’s products and services at
Looking for extra help with social strategy and getting your organization started?
Learn more about what we can offer with our Premium consulting services -
please contact Helle Tyllesen, Head of Customer Strategy, at