The rise of social media over the last several years means your business’ presence on these networks is no longer an option – it’s a requirement. If you’re not there, you’re missing out! From Facebook to Twitter to Instagram to LinkedIn and more, there are dozens of social media websites to choose from. How do you pick which one(s) are right for your business? Here are three questions to help you figure it out.
What are you trying to achieve on social media?
First, look at your goals for establishing a social media presence for your business. Do you want to increase your search engine rankings? Build brand awareness? Increase sales? Increase customer loyalty? You’ll be more successful in achieving your goal if you pick the right social media platform:
- Google+ and YouTube can help improve your search engine rankings
- Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest are good at driving targeted traffic to your website
- Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ are good places to post news and build community
- Facebook users spend an average $71 on products they “like” on Facebook
- LinkedIn is the place to network with other professionals, connect with like-minded business owners, and find potential employees.
- Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest let you connect with users through pictures, which is important if your business is very visual.
How you use each option is important, too. Facebook, Google+, and Twitter allow your fans and followers to easily interact with your posts and share them with their friends. Twitter has proven effective for short, quick posts releasing news, promotions, sales, coupons, etc. Use clever and trending hash tags (they look like this: #socialmediarocks) to get your content in front of other users who might not be your followers but are searching trending hash tags.
Photo posts are always compelling, and they’re especially popular with Facebook and Pinterest users. You don’t have to have a visual business – like graphic design or floral design, for example – to see the benefits of posting photos to Facebook. Users like to see the faces behind the brand and glimpses of life inside your business.
Where does your target audience hang out?
There’s no point in spending your social media time on Vine or Snapchat, which are popular with younger users, if those folks are not your target customer. Just because a social media platform is new and cool doesn’t mean it’s right for you. Find out where your target customer goes for social media, and establish a business account there.
- Facebook is huge – it is estimated that nearly half of the U.S. population has a Facebook account. You can’t go wrong setting up a Facebook page for your business.
- Twitter is also huge, and popular among people of all ages. Twitter is another sure-bet platform to join if you’re looking to reach a wide audience.
- LinkedIn trends toward professionals, and if you’re looking for other small business owners or more formal interactions, it’s worth your time to promote your business there.
- Pinterest is predominately used by women. If they’re your target customers, a Pinterest account may be a must for your business.
How much time do you have?
The list of social media options is overwhelming, and new ones are launched all the time. Who knows what the next big thing will be? You don’t have time to effectively use them all, so choose just one or two. For a small business, accounts on Facebook and Twitter could be enough for you to successfully market your business on social media, especially since you can link the two accounts so that posts from one show up on the other. Spending a couple of hours a week gives you plenty of time to post to these two social media networks a couple of times a day – especially if you use a scheduler like HootSuite to plan posts in advance.
Not sure how to start your social media journey? Contact us today – we can help!