As a business owner, you wear many hats and do what is needed to make your company as successful as possible. So, when it comes to social media, you already know that you can reach a large group of people and you have every intention of making the most of the free social media networks. Then—reality sets in and you realize that creating content for LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest and any others take a lot more time than you thought—and that’s just the planning!
Each platform reaches a different audience, but ultimately establishing your marketing goals and strategy and sticking to your plan will help you pick which platform or platforms are worth the time and effort.
Before we dive into the different social media platforms, you need to identify a few things first to find the right fit for you and your company.
Define your target audience
Each platform caters to a different type of audience, so pay attention to the gender and age ranges of those you are trying to target. Be as specific as possible. If you are struggling to find where you fit, do some research and see which platforms your competitors are using and evaluate if they are using them well.
Have a plan
Once you have defined your ideal audience, it is time to create a strategy. Choose which platforms you would like to focus on (we recommend starting with no more than two), create a posting schedule and a branding guideline so you can make sure your messaging matches how you want people to view your business.
Know your limits
It is a good idea to claim your business on all social media platforms to secure your name and branding, but you do not need to be active on them all. To maintain all accounts would take a small army of social media experts to craft content, film videos and manage your pages. Most business owners are already stretched to the limits so there is no need to let social media stretch you further.
Now, let’s review some of the common attributes of the individual platforms to help you decide which channels could be right for your business:
Facebook is the most popular social media platform worldwide, and one of the best social media websites to market any business. On this platform, you can specifically target your audience by age, employment, interests and other characteristics, making this a very dynamic platform to advertise and build brand awareness.
Best known for providing real-time updates, this platform is mainly used by news outlets, politicians and trending topics. Originally designed for quick and concise thoughts, this platform has upgraded to allow users to share videos and photos, but ultimately text posts still are the most popular posting style.
Twitter uses the application of hashtags, which is a way to “tag” terms to become searchable through the platform using the pound sign “#” (similar to Instagram), but you are limited to 280 characters. Twitter is a great way to get top news and to stay current on trending topics, letting you as a business owner keep timely posts on your content calendar.
LinkedIn has an old fashioned feel, but a basic principle that drives networking —everyone is connected in some way, just like everyone is connected to Kevin Bacon.
Having a company page is a great way for other professionals to find your business and get a glimpse of who you are as a business owner. LinkedIn also uses SEO similar to your website and Facebook so it’s important to keep your descriptions and information as current as possible.
Instagram has made huge strides in the social media world—it’s no wonder since it is owned by Facebook. Instagram is a visual-heavy platform that allows users to publish photos and short video clips that stick with audiences. According to available studies, people remember 80 percent of what they see and only 20 percent of what they read.
As a business owner, one of the best things about Instagram is the ability to grow your follower base organically through the use of storytelling, good images and hashtags. Authenticity goes a long way on this platform.
Pinterest allows users to save “pins” of images from around the web. These images can lead to websites, blogs, videos, services and products. It began as a site for women to share recipes, home decor, fashion and wedding planning ideas, but has grown to include many other topics as well. It still is predominantly used by women, but it is slowly increasing in popularity among men.
At Rooted Web, we understand your unique needs when it comes to getting in front of the right audience and we know that mastering social media can be time-consuming. Targeting the wrong audience not only wastes time but also money. We are ready to help you achieve your business goals and objectives and help your company flourish. Contact us today and see how we can help your business flourish.