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Social Media: A Diagnostic Checklist

Your social media activity is a vital way of interacting with your audience, so it’s important to make sure it’s delivering on all relevant platforms. Ask yourself the following diagnostic questions to understand how your organisation is approaching social media, and if any improvements can be made.

The basics

  • Does your desired audience use the same platforms as you?
    • If your target audience has low interaction levels on the platforms which you spend time and resources maintaining, think about how restructuring your efforts might improve your results.
  • How much time do you have to build your audience and build a community?
    • Assess how important your social media is to your overall marketing plan and allocate resources accordingly.
  • Do you have access to image or video editing tools, or any existing content creation expertise in your team?
    • Using the skills of video creators, designers or copywriters in your organisation in the right place is vital to make the best content possible. If your resources are limited, the options for creating content can be scaled accordingly.
  • Do you have social media guidelines?
    • Make sure this includes information on language style and tone of voice.
  • Do you have an approved asset bank you can use across social media?
    • An asset bank is a collection of images, videos, GIFs or any other relevant content types that have been pre-approved to be used by your team when needed.
  • Do you use a content plan?
    • A content plan is a document which lays out all planned content within an organisation, providing an overview which can be shared with team members and any relevant stakeholders.
  • Are you using an editorial calendar?
    • Working alongside your content plant, an editorial calendar can be used to plot out relevant dates, trends or specific content themes that you want to focus on across a set period.
  • What is it about your organisation that you’re trying to showcase?
    • Consider which platforms and which features would allow you to do this most effectively.

Strategy

  • Why are you on social media?
    • Establish the key reasons you need to use these platforms and how this relates to your business/digital goals.
  • How does your content contribute to your digital goals?
    • The content you create for social media needs to have a definite purpose, whether it’s increasing awareness for a campaign or driving engagement figures to expand the reach of your platforms.
  • Do you have a content strategy?
    • Adequately planning the content you share will make life easier for your social media manager and allow you to measure the impact of everything you do.
  • Do you have a strategy for each social media platform you use?
    • Different social media platforms have their own idiosyncrasies, so a curated approach to each will help you ensure you’re using them in the most effective way possible.
  • Are you using social media insights to shape your content strategy?
    • Reporting back on the success of social media content is vital to keep your audience engaged – whether a piece of content goes viral or sinks without trace, it’s important to understand why so you can incorporate the learnings into your social media strategy.

Overview of current activities

  • Who currently manages your social media channels?
    • Whether it’s a dedicated role or one split across several functions, having accountability or somebody that is overseeing your social media is important for keep a consistent tone of voice. Make sure there is a social media manager who is responsible for your social media community/audience.
  • What social media platforms do you currently use?
    • If you’re more comfortable with some platforms than others, there’s a chance you could be missing out on new audiences and content opportunities.
  • Which of your social media performs best against your goals?
    • Experimenting and testing content on different platforms can provide valuable insight around where your organisation is performing best on social media, and how you can plan to excel across multiple platforms.
  • What does success on social media look like to you?
    • Setting Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for social media is an important way of measuring success, and can include factors like engagement level, the reach of your posts or the number views on your videos.
  • Do you use any scheduling programmes?
    • Hootsuite and Buffer will help you automate content and save time, as content can be bulk-uploaded to your desired social media platform and scheduled for publication at the time when it will have the most impact (for example: allowing you to maintain a presence out of office hours).
  • Are there any organisations or brands that you think use social media well?
    • Having an awareness of what you like in the work of other organisations can be an inspirational way to improve your own content – learning from what you feel is successful content can give your social media new energy.

What next?

This checklist has laid out the key questions you need to ask yourself about your social media strategy, and how you can address some of the most pertinent issues affecting your organisation. To learn more, you can read one of the articles linked below.

The Digital Culture Network is here to support you and your organisation. Our Tech Champions can provide free 1-2-1 support to all arts and cultural organisations who are in receipt of, or eligible for, Arts Council England funding. If you need help or would like to chat with us about any of the advice we have covered above, please get in touch. Sign up to our newsletter below and follow us on Twitter @ace_dcn for the latest updates.

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