Before we get started

Last week we took a look at one of the biggest problems facing social media marketers, and at the end of that article I promised to layout a method for building a better message. Over the next three posts, we’ll be looking at how to build a better foundation for your social efforts. We won’t be looking at social yet, but the process that I’m going to outline will be vital to building a solid social campaign. Let’s get started.

Declaring your intent

Your intent is the ultimate goal of your campaign. As we develop your campaign we’re going to build and implement plans that will, as all plans do, go off the rails or crash completely. The function of the intent is to have a guiding principle which, regardless of how far off course you might be, you can always turn to and ask “is what I’m doing right now bringing me closer to my intent?”

An intent should be a concrete and measurable end-state to a campaign. An intent such as “improve brand awareness” is nebulous and abstract, leaving it open to interpretation and manipulation. An intent such as “get 100 webinar registrations” is a clear end-state which is easily measurable. Even if the latter end state isn’t achieved, having a concrete goal provides value by allowing you the degree to which it was missed. It’s much more helpful to know you missed a goal by 10 registrations than to feel you haven’t created as much awareness as you would like.

Take a few minutes now to think about what your intent is for this campaign. Your intent can be tailored or changed altogether as we continue to build out this campaign, so don’t worry if you don’t have it exactly right. The most important thing to do is to actually create one.