Choosing the Proper Social Media Sites for Marketing
The good news is that social media has leveled the playing field for all businesses by providing marketing opportunities that were not available a little over a decade ago. Business owners and marketers wouldn’t have it any other way.
The bad news is that the social media environment is constantly evolving. New platforms are introduced and old algorithms are being updated regularly. Deciding which platforms to use and keeping up with the latest techniques can be daunting for business owners and entrepreneurs – especially if you are just jumping into the whole social media scene.
Businesses may try to utilize all social media sites thinking that will give them the most outreach and viewership. But that’s not always true. Ultimately it depends what your marketing goals are, what type of content you will be publishing and what type of business you are promoting. You must also be realistic with how much time you have to devote doing your own marketing or determine what your budget is in terms of hiring an advertising agency. If time and funds are limited, stick with one or two social media sites. It’s better to be extremely knowledgeable and dedicated to a couple of sites than to manage multiple platforms inefficiently.
4 Considerations When Determining Social Media Success
1. What is the Goal of Your Social Media Campaign?
You may be thinking, that’s easy, sales! Isn’t that everyone’s goal?
Yes, but narrow it down a bit further. Is your goal to get brand recognition or is it to get leads? Or maybe your goal is to drive someone to download an app or visit your brick and mortar location.
Snapchat is a good way to get people to download an app while LinkedIn will be better choice for getting leads. Facebook will help you in both of those areas and will help you with brand awareness as well. In fact, if you choose to run a Facebook ad campaign, you will have the option indicate what the goal is of your campaign and Facebook will do a lot of the work for you.
Either way, it is important to consider your marketing goals before investing your time and money into a social media platform.
2. Who is Your Target Audience?
Each social media has a different audience with Facebook being the most diverse. For example, LinkedIn is popular among professionals while Instagram and Snapchat users consist of a younger audience.
Here are some interesting facts based on Pew Research from 2015:
Pinterest users consist of primarily women. Also, those living in suburban areas are more likely to be interested in Pinterest.
Unlike Pinterest, LinkedIn attracts uses from urban areas. It is also popular with those with college degrees and higher incomes.
Twitter users are typically younger and live in urban areas.
As mentioned, Facebook is the most diverse platform with users from all income brackets, all living areas, young and old
Although these statistics are not 100% definitive of all users, it is certainly worth doing your research and examining how different social media sites will meet different marketing needs.
3. What Type of Content Will You be Promoting?
Adding content is one of the most important pieces of the social media puzzle. Have you given thought to what type of content you will be producing? Will it be blog articles, videos photos, or perhaps a combination of all three?
Youtube, Vimeo and Facebook a must for video content. If your content will mainly consist of photos then Pinterest, Snapchat and Instagram may be the perfect platforms.
Twitter is perfect for posting smaller pieces of information.
The types of content will vary from business to business. Businesses that provide a visual product or service should be posting a lot of photos and video. Examples of these businesses would be landscapers, hairdressers, clothing boutiques, home decor stores … you get the idea. If you are an accounting firm or an insurance provider you likely will be posting more blog articles on social media to educate your audience. A fitness studio would highly benefit from videos displaying workout techniques, before and after photos and informative health articles.
4. What Are Your Competitors Doing?
Competitive analysis is a crucial step in almost every business decision – and determining the digital face of your business is not a decision to be made on impulse.
Certainly many of your competitors are already on social media sites so review what platforms they are using, what type of content they are adding and how often they post. And study various competitors. The idea is not to copy off their exact schedule and content. Instead, study the overall model and strategy of your competition and then figure out a plan to outperform them.