My FULL Social Media Strategy
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I produce a metric crap ton of content. I have my podcast, a YouTube channel, daily Instagram content, Facebook posts, and a weekly email. There’s a LOT of content coming down the Hey Jessica pipeline. I always get asked why I’m on so many platforms when I recommend focusing on just one. Today, I’m breaking down my FULL social media strategy for you and explaining what my end goal is for each platform.
My FULL Social Media Strategy | Why I’m on YouTube, Instagram, and a Podcast
Want to listen to the podcast version of this post? I’ve got you covered!
Back to your regularly scheduled programming.
I can create a lot of content because I have a team who helps me.
Yes, I create a lot of content. But I would never, ever, ever tell you that I could create this much content without a team – because I couldn’t.
If I didn’t have someone who edited my YouTube videos, edits and uploads my podcast, created social media graphics, and all the things, I could NOT do this. As I’m talking about my strategy, keep in mind that I’m not a one-woman team.
Let’s start with what I was doing as a one-woman team
When I was truly a one-woman team, I was only putting content on my blog (very inconsistently). Before I had a VA or any other support, that’s all I could do. Then, in 2015, Jaclyn Mellone and I started the All Up In Your Lady Business podcast. We were still a “one-woman team” at that point. We divided up the tasks, and my role was to edit the podcast. Because that took a lot of time, that was really the only content I put out each week.
Shortly after, we hired an editor to handle the podcast process which was magically amazing. The next step was hiring a VA who helped with the management of other things so I had time to edit my videos or film or write a blog post. That’s how I really started in content creation. WIth the podcast, it was easy to hand off the management and editing to someone else. With my YouTube channel, it wasn’t as easy. It took me a long time to find an editor who I was confident understood what I wanted (and who didn’t charge me a bajillion dollars because I couldn’t afford that). So, I used my budget to clear off other parts of my calendar to let myself handle the YouTube stuff.
When I first started with social media, I was focused on Facebook. Facebook was really the place to be – Instagram was a thing, but it wasn’t big yet. I don’t think Instagram became a massive thing for businesses until stories came along.
So, I started out focused on Facebook. Then, I incorporated YouTube as I started hiring help. I focused on YouTube for awhile because I had already spent time building up my Facebook. Instagram came next. A podcast has always just kind of been there on the side. We shut down the All Up In Your Lady Business podcast in December 2018. It took me about five months after that before I launched a podcast of my own because I wasn’t sure I wanted to at first.
The way I’ve done it thus far is to focus on one social platform until it grows and becomes easy to manage. Once it becomes easy to manage, I move on to another one. Rinse and repeat.
As you get started on each content creation platform, I think they need to be all you all the time. After you grow, you’re able to move away from that.
What my full social media strategy looks like TODAY (in November 2020)
I still have a Facebook page that has continued to grow through the years. I have not focused on Facebook (or had a strategy) in two years. Facebook is tougher now because there’s a lot of “pay-to-play” involved in growing your page. Facebook ads are a really big way to drive up likes on your page. That being said, I have almost 5,200 likes. It grows at a rate of 100-200 likes per month, and when I’m running ads it grows a little quicker. Facebook is really a passive social platform for me right now.
I obviously also have a YouTube Channel. I publish a video every single week on YouTube. That’s a very active strategy, but it’s gotten to the point where it’s very predictable and manageable. I delegate, so all I do is create the content and show up in the comments. It’s an active strategy, but I’m not obsessive over it.
Passive Income Playbook Podcast
Then I have this podcast (whoo whoo)! For me personally, I can talk something out so much quicker than I can write something out. It also means I can look like death warmed over when I record and nobody has to see me! All in all, the podcast takes less prep and editing than YouTube. There’s also less maintenance because there’s no way for us to chat in the podcast. I also love that I can put more long-form content on there. I also don’t edit my own podcast or upload it, so I focus on planning and recording.
Instagram is the next piece of the puzzle for me. It’s my massively active social platform. I consider YouTube to be a search engine with a social element, and podcasting is just content creation, so Instagram is the social platform.
When I tell you guys to only have one social platform – I literally do, too. Facebook is there (and I did focus on it for several years), but now it’s really a passive thing that grows on its own. Instagram is where I’m at!
So I have YouTube, the podcast, and Instagram. They each serve a different purpose – which is what I need you to know.
The Reason Behind the Platforms
Everything I say will likely lead back to Instagram, so we’ll start here. I use Instagram to create community.
That doesn’t mean the other platforms I have are not cultivating community – but I funnel people from those places to my Instagram. If you want to ask me a question, then dm me on Instagram and I’ll answer it. Instagram is where I hang out and were my people are. Instagram is really where I nurture my audience but ALSO where I build a two-way relationship.
There has to be some way for your audience to build a two-way relationship with you.
You can’t sustain an audience if your relationship is one-sided, so your full social media strategy NEEDS to incorporate This doesn’t have to be on Instagram. It can absolutely be on your email list or in a Facebook group. I choose Instagram because I can get on there and talk face-to-face. In one 15 second clip, you can hear what I’m saying and ask me a question. There’s so much that I can do on Instagram as a community-builder.
You’ve got to find a way to build relationships with your audience and make it a two-way street. If you’re in a friendship, romantic relationship, or family relationship and it only goes one way? It’s no fun and you probably aren't sticking around. The same thing goes for cultivating an audience.
Instagram allows me to talk with my audience in a way that’s really intimate and very purposeful. On my podcast, I can’t do that. Instagram is the main place where I nurture and maintain that relationship. And that’s SO important. If you don’t feel heard by me or like I understand you, then you won’t buy from me. I don’t only cultivate community to get people to buy from me at ALL. But if you really get down to the nitty gritty, that’s a big piece of it.
If I could just be sponsored by brands and make a full-time income, I would never sell to you. No joke. I love putting out free content because I personally know how impactful free content was for me at every stage of building my business. But also, that’s not the case right now – I’m not being sponsored heavily right now or seeking sponsors heavily right now. The price of my free content is that I’m eventually going to sell content. That’s why Instagram plays a big role in my end goal. I want you to trust me and talk with me and want to hang out with me. It’s where I nurture my people.
Do I try to find new followers on Instagram? Absolutely. The feed on Instagram is very much the place where I do that – especially with Reels. If you really want to hear more about the full Instagram strategy that I use, you definitely want to be in my free pop-up Facebook group this week (click here to save your spot).
To be honest, Instagram is mostly where I sell, too. That’s where people have taken the relationship further, so it’s normal and fine for me to ask if people want to buy.
The purpose of YouTube is to find people who are going to want the rest of my content and need to find it. If we’re looking at this like a triangle, then YouTube is at the top. It’s where I find people and add them to my funnel so they can get into the other things I do.
You’re finding me on YouTube if you’re in the beginning stages of figuring out your strategy or your business OR you’re trying to solve a problem. So I use YouTube to help people find me.
In terms of my full social media strategy, my goal is to get people from YouTube to Instagram. From Instagram, I want to both keep people there and send them to the podcast. My goal with the podcast is that if you are new to finding me, then I want you to go to Instagram. Everything right now leads back to Instagram.
That doesn’t mean everything doesn’t also lead back to my email list… because it does, and I very much focus on building that list. However, I use Instagram to build the list, and I want everyone who consumes my content to come over there and hang out with me. Everything is purposeful!
If someone finds me on YouTube, my goal is to make sure that they get in my ecosystem somewhere else as well. The same thing goes for my podcast.
YouTube is the finder at the top of the funnel and the feeder to everything else. That’s why I don’t focus on building that two-way relationship on YouTube as much. I don’t think I can do it well on that platform, and I want people to hang out with me on Instagram for that relationship. And I get messages daily from people who found me on YouTube and had to come follow me on Instagram – which is the goal.
The podcast is to provide content in a different way than YouTube. YouTube is generally how-to videos and getting started content. This podcast can be a little more intricate and high level. The people who watch YouTube and who listen to podcasts are different. They’re usually at different stages. THat’s not to say that beginners don’t listen to my podcast or experience business owners don’t watch my YouTube – because I know you do. However, as a general rule, YouTube is typically for beginners and podcast listeners are usually further along.
I have a very visceral reaction to me saying that because for me personally, that was not the case. When I started out, I was always listening to podcasts and never watched YouTube videos. But I know that I was not the norm, especially right now in our social media culture.
I love that I can share more high-level content on the podcast and keep it more laid back and conversational. I don’t have to think about the transitions I’m going to include to keep people’s attention because the attention span on podcasts is much longer.
The podcast is to nurture. It’s about me showing up and showing expertise to bust through that know, like, and trust wall. If you listen to a podcast episode, you’re going to feel like you know me. And that’s awesome.
Podcasts generally don’t have the discoverability that YouTube has. People tend to come to your podcasts because people know you. I did a speech at ShePodcast last October, and my whole talk was about how a podcast is not the top of your funnel. So many people think that they’re going to create a podcast and use it to funnel people elsewhere, and that’s not true. The discoverability in podcast platforms is just not there.
Sometimes, people do get discovered because of their podcast – but you can’t just create and assume that people will come. There’s other work you need to do to make that happen. The podcast is not the top of my funnel and never will be. It’s deep into the funnel and deep within the strategy.
The rundown of my funnel/ecosystem
Let’s talk about funnels as in an ecosystem. YouTube is the top. The podcast and the blog and stuff are right under that. Instagram comes next, then my email list, and then the sale. That's my full social media strategy – it's all a strategic funnel.
My podcast isn’t where I expect people to find me. It’s where people go to get higher strategy and it’s where we’re really going to hang out in a more intimate setting.
I imagine that people find me on YouTube and then come to my Instagram. On Instagram, I tell them I have a podcast. Then, they listen to the podcast. Now, they're avid podcast listeners and they follow me on Instagram (and occasionally still watch my YouTube videos).
Yes, I’m on LinkedIn and Facebook – but those are irrelevant to me, my content and my strategy. They’re just there and are self-sufficient at this point.
My goal with YouTube is for new people to find me, and not to nurture my existing people. Probably, if I focused on nurturing my existing people there, my channel would grow quicker.
So, people Google me, find my videos and decide they like me. Their next step is to follow me on Instagram. From Instagram, I send them to the podcast and vice versa. And it’s not either or – it’s people who still hang out with me on Instagram. Podcast listeners are people who already follow me somewhere else.
Remember – I have a team!
This is not where I started out. I’ve grown into this strategy on these platforms. Sometimes, people say that you should start producing all this content and doing all these things, but they don’t tell you about the team behind it. I have a full-time team, which is MASSIVE. It makes me possible for me to do the content.
What does this mean for you?
So, what’s the point of all of this as it applies to you? You need a way to create content where people can find you. Create findable content.
Don’t tell my sister that I’m about to tell a story about her. We tease my sister all the time. She’s not in a relationship and she hasn’t been in one for awhile. We tell her that she needs to go out and find one, and she always says she doesn’t know where to go. You can’t just sit here and hope that a relationship falls into your lap! That’s not how it works. You need to have a full social media strategy that gets people into your audience and then keeps them there.
The same thing goes for your content and audience growth. You can’t just put something out into the world that is not findable. If you aren’t doing what you need to do to make sure people see you, they won’t. You can’t decide to start a business and never put out ways for people to find you. Ten years ago? They probably would have found you. Now? Absolutely not. There’s way too much noise.
Back to the relationship analogy. If you’re single and you want to be single, you do you! If you’re looking for a partner but you’re not putting out the effort and doing the things to find one, you can’t be mad that you’re not finding a partner. Your content works the same way.
1. Create content that allows people to find you.
Podcasts do not work that way. Blogging can absolutely be a way that people find you, and blogging can include a podcast. Have a full social media strategy that lets people discover you! You have to be strategic about this. Just putting out a podcast won’t help people find you. Sharing about your podcast on Instagram likely won’t get you discovered either. What will get a podcast discovered is being on someone else’s podcast and telling them about yours. Or running ads on a paid platform to your podcast. You could even create blog posts about your podcasts that are search friendly, so that when people go to Google they find your blog post and then your podcast episode in there.
2. ALWAYS filter those people to a next step in the relationship – and make sure it’s the most lateral move possible!
I think that you should direct people to the next step in the most adjacent way to how they found you. If someone finds me via a blog post, it makes the most sense, if they liked what they read, for them to be on my email list. They came and consumed text content. If they decide they want to continue the relationship, they can sign up for a freebie and get on my email list. Going from reading a blog post to reading emails is a lateral move.
If they found me on video and enjoyed watching it, then they should come to Instagram because my face is on my stories all the time. I would send someone who found me on Instagram Reels and then came to my stories to send them to YouTube or the podcast because they’re used to hearing my voice. If they found me on the podcast (which is rare), then they’ve heard my voice and want more of it, then it makes more sense to move them to Instagram or YouTube. That doesn’t mean that I can’t then take them to my email list.
Here's a recent example:
My friend Emily Baker is a former District Attorney in Los Angeles, California. In the last several years, she transitioned out of being a DA into an attorney for entrepreneurs. In the last little bit, she transitioned into more of a commentator on the legal things happening in pop culture and the news. Her YouTube channel just recently blew up. She started one week with 4,000 subscribers and ended the week with 40,000 because she had a video go viral. Then, she knew the strategy well enough to put out more videos that have gone viral. She has basically been viral with multiple videos for over a week now when I’m recording this.
Guess what else grew?
Her email list, her podcast listeners, and her Instagram following. It’s not that she just promotes all of those things on her YouTube videos. She does a soft promotion. Once people find you in one place, they want to find you in other places – and you should make them want to.
Emily focused on YouTube and growing there. But the growth she had there funneled growth everywhere else – and that’s how it should work.
Sometimes, people think that I mean that the top of your funnel HAS to be YouTube – and I don’t mean that at all! It could be anything. If people find you on Instagram, then you need to be funneling them to the next step. Once you get your audience to follow you multiple places and consuming two types of content, they’re much more likely to trust you. You've got to integrate that funnel into your full social media strategy.
On my blog, we’re producing five days of content every week. Two of those posts are from my existing content (like the one you’re reading right now)! Every YouTube video and podcast episode has its own blog post every week. That being said, there’s also four other posts that go up every single week from different contributors/guest bloggers.
The strategy there is to increase my discoverability. People are still Googling things. If I can be the one to give them the content that helps them, that’s awesome. And if they stick around in my ecosystem because they found that content AND they also go join the ecosystem of the person who wrote the post – that’s even more impactful.
For me, my blog is a discoverability piece. It helps my podcast and YouTube videos be more discoverable. And it gives people one more way to find me.
Let me reiterate – if I were a one-woman team, I absolutely would not be doing all this content. I would have ONE way for people to find me. And then, I would have one way to nurture them. But for now, this is my full social media strategy.
Want to learn how to cultivate a following, no matter what size, that will buy anything you have to sell?
You've got the knowledge about the elements your full social media strategy should have. but now, you need to know how to cultivate that amazing audience to grow your business! If you're ready to take that next step, you NEED to sign up for my pop-up Facebook group. It's called Small Following, Big Impact, and it's all about how to do exactly that.