So you’re ready to enter the new year with a strong social media marketing strategy? If so, then follow along.

In this guide, I’ll offer a beginner’s class on social media marketing. I’ll also show you how to get the jump on your competitors as we exit the pandemic.

To make things clear, I’ll go through a hypothetical about how a new company that’s developing a social media marketing strategy.

Keep in mind: for the most part, this article will focus on organic, rather than paid, strategies. I’ll cover paid strategies in a different article.

Green Cali

The hypothetical company is named Green Cali. It sells surfboards in my own stomping grounds of California.

Moreover, Green Cali is environmentally conscious. The company donates money to programs that clean beaches and help the environment.

So how should that company launch its social strategy?

Read on.

It Starts with Personas

The first thing Green Cali needs to do is create personas.

What are personas? They’re fictitious representations of actual customers in the company’s target market.

A typical persona in the market for surfboards would include a young male who lives in California and loves surfing.

But that’s just one persona. In reality, Green Cali will need to come up with at least a few of them.


Next, Green Cali needs to gather demographics on its potential customers.

Fortunately, I know quite a bit about the demographics involved here because I’m a surfer myself.

About 70-80% of surfers are male. They range in age from 13-49 years old. They also live in coastal communities.

So those are the folks that Green Cali needs to target in its outreach efforts.

Target market


There are plenty of social media platforms. Where should Green Cali focus its efforts?

Surfers tend to hang out on YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook. Those are the three channels where the company should gather a following.

Fortunately, those three social media sites give the company plenty of opportunities for different types of content.

What to Post?

So what kind of content should Green Cali post on social media?

One option: videos of wipeouts.

Yep. Those go over well within the surfing subculture.

Another option: instructional videos. That’s a great way to reach newbie surfers.

Green Cali could also post top surfing clips. That will raise engagement.

Finally, the company can post videos about surf-related products.

The Editorial Calendar

Green Cali has decided what to post, but what about when to post it?

That’s why an editorial calendar is so valuable.

An editorial calendar specifies the types of content the company will post on specific social media channels over time.

The objective here is to post five articles per week. That includes four during the work week and one on the weekend.

The Weekly Campaign

Next, Green Cali needs to develop a weekly campaign.

For that, the company can go with something like a pic of the week.

Surfers around the country can upload photos of awesome tricks, beautiful beaches, or environmental activists doing their part.

Green Cali can ask for photos through an app like Woobox. That’s contest software.

Woobox website screenshot

The company can advertise that everybody who enters has a chance to win a beautiful surfboard.

Further, Green Cali could promise to donate $10 to some beach cleanup operation for every photo that folks submit.

The Quarterly Campaign

Green Cali needs a quarterly campaign in addition to a weekly campaign.

During the quarterly campaign, the company can finally give out that free surfboard to one lucky winner.

People who don’t win will be sure to enter the next quarter.

Network-Specific Strategies

Green Cali needs to determine the best times to post on each social media channel.

How does it do that? It’s not easy.

Truth be told, it might be best to let a tool like Sprout Social schedule posts based on historical engagement rates. Then, the company’s social media marketer won’t have to worry about poring over analytics.

Setting Goals

It’s always good to set goals because they give business leaders something to reach for.

Green Cali should set goals regarding followers, subscribers, and engagement rates.

Further, the company should set those goals within a specific timeframe (for example: 10,000 new followers on Instagram in the first quarter).

Instagram followers

Doubling Down

Green Cali should double-down on social media posts that gain a great deal of traction.

The company can pay social media channels to promote those popular posts and make them even more popular.

Then, the company will generate quite a bit of buzz about its brand.

Wrapping It Up

There’s the hypothetical for a surf shop.

However, keep in mind that the underlying principles I discussed here will work for just about any business.

If you haven’t yet developed a solid social media strategy for 2021, why not start today?