Social media can be an overwhelming thing to do well -- between Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Snapchat, and niche sites (like Untappd or Houzz), it can be a lot to juggle. Managing multiple sites can turn into a full time job, so it’s important to pick and choose the sites that will work best for you.
Always remember that the main goal of social media is to connect with potential customers -- and to do this you have to be strategic in the sites that you choose to use. While social media is an important part of almost any digital marketing plan, spreading yourself too thin by trying to manage every site available won’t get you anywhere. We recommend selecting two or three sites that will give you the best return on the time you invest.
Each platform has a unique identity based on the people who view it and how they are engaged. It’s important to know where different demographics spend their time online, what kind of content will catch their eye, and what platform will best showcase your products or services.
When thinking about your target demographic, you should ask yourself two things:
1- Who are your current clients?
2- And who do you want your clients to be?
Social media isn’t a quick fix to getting you the types of customers that you want -- but, done consistently and done well, social will develop into one of the most valuable tools in your marketing arsenal.
So, without further adieu let’s jump into some quick facts about each platform.
FACEBOOK: Let’s start with the most obvious site -- Facebook. With 1.44 billion monthly active users, Facebook is arguably the most well-known and widely used social site there is. Because of its wide reach and varied user base, Facebook is a must for business. 63% of people 50-64 and 56% of people 65+ use Facebook -- this makes it the best platform if you’re aiming to reach older people. The leading demographic of Facebook users are also college educated. And 74% and 72% of adults who make $50,000-$74,999 and $75k+ (respectively) use Facebook -- making it a good place to market luxury brands.
Post ideas: Announcing limited edition products or daily specials, sharing customer reviews, or the details about an upcoming events.
TWITTER: If you’re looking for the challenge of whittling your message down to 140 characters or less, then Twitter is for you. Twitter is best described as an ongoing conversation… kind of like texting back and forth with someone. Connecting with clients has never been easier. By retweeting, utilizing trending hashtags, and following others, you can quickly gain a lot of reach. Like most social sites, Twitter skews towards the younger crowd, with 37% of 18-29 using Twitter. Because of it’s fast paced nature, Twitter is great for quick feedback and breaking news. One of the best ways to gain some fast reach on Twitter is to hop onto a trending hashtag!
Post ideas: Your take on trending topics, polls, quick tips and tricks.
INSTAGRAM: Where are you? What are you doing now? Who are you with? Instagram is one of the best places to answer these questions for your potential customers. Perfect for behind-the-scenes updates, Instagram can help your customers get to know the “real” you. With the capability to upload snippets of video, an arsenal of filters, and handy editing tools, you can take a picture from blah to drool-worthy. If you take great photos and invest time in finding the right hashtags, you can make Instagram work for you. Instagram is one of the trendiest platforms right now, and is perfect if you’re looking to capture 18–29 year olds. With over 53% of 18-28 year olds using Instagram, it has overtaken Facebook and Twitter as the most popular site with younger audiences. It also has a predominately female user base.
Our top tip? Take the time to stage photos properly. For more on that go here and here.
Post ideas: Feature customer reviews, behind-the-scenes shots of your office, or show off a collection of your products.
PINTEREST: A mecca for designers, interior decorators, and brides-to-be, Pinterest is the place for all things girly. On a site built for browsing, you have to be able to catch a potential customer's eye -- this means carefully curating the look of each board, and keeping your boards organized by category (such as food, travel, design, etc) so that people can follow just the board they're interested in. Pinterest has a predominantly female audience with 42% of online women pinning on the regular. These women also tend to have more disposable income -- make it a good place to sell expensive products or optional services.
Post ideas: Organize boards focused around your products, or inspiration that relates to the services you sell.
SNAPCHAT: With 79% of its users under the age of 25, Snapchat is definitely a younger man’s game. Use Snapchat to share real-life action -- it allows your clients to see exactly what you’re doing, and if you are selling products it’s perfect for taking your audience behind-the-scenes. We don’t know alot about the average Snapchat user -- but we do know that 71% of everyone who uses the platform is under 25, and around 70% are female. With the exception of business like boutiques, Snapchat probably isn’t the best platform for a small business to utilize.
Post ideas: Employee takeovers, behind the scenes, and day-to-day life.
PERISCOPE: Periscope is a video streaming app that allows real time interaction with your followers. By “going live” with Periscope you stream and connect with your followers at any time, from any location. The best part about Periscope is that it integrates with Twitter -- allowing you to utilize your existing audience and reach a larger audience.
Post ideas: live Q & A, tutorial on how to use a new product, or live event updates.
LINKEDIN: LinkedIn is like a virtual resume -- it’s all about making connections with other professionals. You can upload your resume, link to your portfolio website, share your professional insight, apply to jobs, and connect with employers all in one place. LinkedIn is great for people who need to market business-to-business or business owners who are looking to use their personal profile to make direct connections with potential customers. Specifically, LinkedIn Pulse is a great place to stay in the know about industry information, and show off your own expertise. A news feed within LinkedIn, Pulse is designed for members to share self-published content. You can also follow major brands or industry leaders!
Post ideas: Business insights, new job postings, and industry updates.
Each network has it’s own benefits and drawbacks, and there are tons of sites we weren’t even able to cover! The key to success is picking 2-3 sites that work well with your services/products, sticking with them, and posting regularly. Seeing a return on social media can take months of diligence -- but in a digital world, it’s an inevitable investment.
Thinking social media still might be a little much for you to handle? Need full time help? Give us a call at 336-365-8559 and we can set you up with all the help you need to get your social media up and running smoothly!