What social media should you be using for your business?


Using social media as a means of marketing can be a strange concept to get your head around. What exactly is a dog filter? What hashtag is going to be popular? Why is liking my own posts social destruction? You might have asked yourself a few of these questions when first coming to terms with social media for business, I know that I did.

Fortunately, with a little guidance it’s not too difficult to master social media for your company and start to see results being delivered. When you’re deciding on how to utilise social media platforms to maximise your reach, it’s important to understand what each is most commonly used for, the benefits and how to tailor content for every platform.

I’m going to give you a quick run down on the best platforms to use and why, with a few extra tips to help you start utilising social media for marketing.

Facebook

As the biggest social networking outlet, Facebook can be a phenomenal tool to use for your business marketing as it has the potential to push your content to go viral. Unfortunately it’s not as simple as posting one great status and suddenly you have over 20k shares, but with the right effort and understanding of your target audience, with some time, that could happen.

Regardless of your industry, Facebook is the one social media networking site that can be used for all because of its versatility and usability. Both these aspects mean that once you’ve set up your Facebook business page, you’ll be able to understand how to use it quite easily, and post different types of content. Facebook also offers advertising or sponsored posts, so you can publish content to your page and if it performs well, you can boost this for a reasonably priced additional cost and it acts as an advertisement, reaching potential leads and customers.

Tip: Facebook can be the perfect place to spread awareness about your brand and get your name out there.

Twitter

Some people often tell me that they’re completely baffled by Twitter, but once you’ve started using it, you’ll see how simple and great it is. Twitter is the second largest social site after Facebook, and therefore can also be used to increase your reach world wide and build conversations with people you may have not been able to interact with before.

Content needs to be short and snappy as you only have 140 characters available, but there are other ways to optimise your tweet for the best results. You can include images and you can tag up to 10 other people in that tweet - all of which do not take away from your character count. When you craft a well-written tweet, you should include an engaging image, and tag similar accounts that are likely to retweet your post. This way you’re enhancing your share rate, which means that more and more people will see your content. With Twitter, you also want to ensure you’re promoting others (this is super important) and giving a good amount of attention to not only your own content. With retweets and quote tweets you can quickly share others content - and they might just share yours back.

Tip: Twitter is a great tool for creating conversations with a large audience and finding relevant people to connect with.

LinkedIn

Nearly everyone knows that LinkedIn is great for business and professionals, but not everyone fully understands how to use it for growth. LinkedIn tends to come later on in a customer or client’s journey, therefore you don’t need to rely on it too heavily when it comes to publishing content. Set up your business page and post informative content, which focuses on helpful information relevant to your end product or service.

LinkedIn isn’t the place to post short updates or ask a quick question, it’s the place to update your connections with posts that have been written in a professional manner and offer something a little more to your readers. You can also use LinkedIn to search for and connect with people within the same industry as you to help strengthen your general network or to see if they’re interested in your service or product - it’s great as they will be able to see your experience in the field, others who you’re connected with and see you are a reputable business.

Tip: If you’re looking to connect with potential clients or customers, LinkedIn is perfect to reach out in a professional manner.

Instagram

Instagram can be a difficult platform to master, as it’s mainly about imagery more than anything else. Although Instagram is great for personal use and posting random pictures of funny things in the street, it’s a slightly harder tool to use when it comes to business, but if you have the right kind of business you will flourish.

If you’re a Lifestyle and Travel Magazine, Instagram will most likely be more useful and rewarding for you as you’ll have beautiful images taken professionally to post on your page, which are bound to gain you followers and exposure. If you’re a plumbing company, it’s going to be considerably harder as there’s not quite as many people out there that want to see images of plumbing problems. Graphics can be useful for content on this social site, so can quotes, funny images and before’s and after’s. Although not beautiful imagery, if you use engaging text that encourages comments and people tagging their friends with the relevant hashtags, you’ll soon start to see your followers growing and traffic being pushed to your site.

Tip: Invest in an app that can help you to manage your following and unfollowing. There are free ones out there, and they’ll help you to grow steadily.

Pinterest

This platform is definitely one of the smaller ones, and is only really worth investing time in if you have a business that will suit the style. Pinterest is another visual focused platform, however, it doesn’t solely rely on extremely beautiful imagery. What’s so engaging about Pinterest is how user friendly it is, and the fact that you can integrate this into your browser so that you can Pin anything you find on the Internet.

Most Pinterest users are females, interested in DIY, make-up, hair, crafts, fashion, exercise, travel, food and photography. Therefore, if your business is within any of those industries, then this outlet is going to be successful in helping you to reach out to your audience. If your company doesn’t fall under these industries or a similar one, my advice would be to focus your efforts elsewhere - there’s no point in trying to do really well at one social site which will never work, especially when you can concentrate your time elsewhere.

Tip: You should aim to have over 50 boards, and pin regularly to them (everyday if possible). Also credit original sources where possible to build trust.

YouTube

The biggest video sharing platform there is out there, and one that you should really be taking advantage of. Your videos that you upload to YouTube won’t only stay on that platform, but they suddenly become easily shareable and can be posted on your other social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. By creating video content, you’re making content for your other social platforms, therefore meaning you produce double the work.

Content on YouTube will again be dependent on your business type - you might want to create informative and educational videos or you might want to focus on creative and entertaining pieces instead. You really need to think about the type of videos your target audience is watching, and use that in your briefs for when you’re creating the content. If you don’t have enough experience in this field and you’re still looking for the right person to handle video content, then you can utilise people already doing YouTube well. If you have a product, you can reach out to well-known bloggers and pay for a review of your product to get your name out there. Although you’ll need to invest some money, it’s a sure way to get people involved with your brand, and closer to that buying stage.

Tip: Content that you already have can be repurposed for YouTube. Take your most popular blog post and turn it into a video to capture a difference audience.

Snapchat

If you’re a small business then you may want to think about using Snapchat to create compelling content and help your audience connect with you on a different level. All content on Snapchat automatically deletes itself, therefore, if you don’t have time to make sure the content itself is 110% perfect, it’s fine because it will be deleted very soon.

Snapchat is great tool to publish quick content by taking advantage of the stories feature that allows you to create compelling short videos. However, only those that have added you can actually see what you’ve posted, therefore you’ll need to build up an audience on a different channel first and then send them over to Snapchat.

Tip: Snapchat can be used for quick content, to reinforce your brand name and make sure you’re the first that comes to mind throughout the day.

Let us know over on Twitter or Facebook your thoughts on social media and business!

#socialmediamarketing #socialmedia #facebook #twitter #linkedin #snapchat #digitalmarketing

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