Integrated Business Growth

The Success Labs
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Choosing a social media marketing platform.

Choosing a social media marketing platform.

How do I choose the social media site for marketing my business? To answer that question, we must respond to these 3 questions:

  • What are the more popularly used Social Networking sites?
  • Which is the Best Social Media site for business?
  • Which Social Media site should I be posting to?

What are some of the most popular Social Media sites?

Here’s a quick list of some of the more popular social networks, along with a very abbreviated description of the type of media that is most frequently posted:

Facebook:

Accepts basically all of the media types (see list below).
Pro: MASSIVE community.
Con: Not necessarily always a very engaged community.

Twitter:

Accepts basically all of the media types (see list below), but imposes a strict limit on post length of 140 characters.
Pro: Good for quick, brief updates and brand building.
Con: Harder to directly monetize, character restriction is pretty limiting.

Google+:

Accepts basically all of the media types (see list below).
Pro: Certain communities (early adopters, tech related niches) are very engaged and active.
Con: The social network on the whole is struggling to gain traction and may one day collapse entirely if that continues. Google will undoubtedly try to avoid this, however.

Pinterest, Instagram:

Completely image-centered. Ideal for very visual business, huge audiences for DIY / Craft niches.
Pro: Fantastic for image related content, products, etc.
Con: Other media types are not permitted.

Reddit, 4Chan, 9Gag, Vote:

Accept basically all of the media types (see list below). Broken down heavily into niches, not as easy to directly monetize, although many have done so.
Pro: Fairly active communities exist in most niches, and some are remarkably engaged and helpful.
Con: Anything that seems like self-promotion is typically strongly resisted.

Vine:

6 second videos, great for short, funny / highly interesting content matter.
Pro: Excellent for short form videos.
Cons: Few businesses can capitalize on this content format.

Youtube:

Longer Videos, massive audience, not as interactive or engaged. More for content distribution than community engagement.
Pro: Massive built in audience (YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine, after Google)
Con: Restricted to video only, Video marketing can be difficult/expensive to do in a professional manner.

Which is the Best Social Media site for business?

The answer to this is different for every business. Major brands with a massive budget can afford to run campaigns spread out across a wide number of social networks, but for most small-medium sized businesses it’s a better bet to pick one or two social sites and really focus on them. You can use automation to share your content across numerous social media sites but a real marketing campaign takes interaction and focus, which you won’t be able to achieve on multiple sites unless you have a huge budget. So how do you choose a site to focus on? Pick one or two based on your answers to the following 2 questions:

Is my target audience more heavily active on a particular social network?

It’s sensible to figure out where your target market is most active socially. Do a few searches on social sites for keywords related to what you do, and see what level of engagement or community already exists. When you find a super active community it’s a good sign that you might want to target that social site. Bear in mind that a super engaged community can be a more profitable target than a larger, less engaged community. For example, a group on Facebook with 2 Million members may not be as good a potential target as a LinkedIn community of 200 000.

What media types of content do I want to post?

Text:

Most social media sites allow text posts. Facebook, LinkedIn and Reddit are good examples. Instagram and Pinterest wouldn’t work for this.

Images:

If your niche is super visual, you’ll want to start with Pinterest and Instagram, which are super image-centric, but you might also want to consider Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Reddit. Many social media sites are built around the sharing of images. Possibly just a pic of your baby to delight the grandparents, or maybe detailed shots in chronological order showing how you created something amazing.

Links:

Share the content you’ve found (or created) elsewhere online with a simple link. Possible in most social media sites.

Videos:

Youtube mostly, Vine if you plan on producing mini-vids. Much like image sharing, you can upload and share videos, whether personal or commercial.

Memes:

Most social networking sites. Basically just a captioned image. Common examples: Success kid, Awkward Penguin, Insanity Wolf, Drunk Baby, Good Guy Greg. (Spend any time on Reddit, Facebook, Twitter, etc and you’ll run into these!)

GIFs:

Most social networking sites. Short video snippets saved in .GIF (and now html5 video) formats allow you to share a hilarious or interesting event. Typically just a few seconds long and shown on repeat so you can really enjoy each moment.

Once you’ve answered the two above questions, you should be able to pin your options down to one or two social media sites, and really dig in to the actual campaign. Need advice on that? Check out our post on creating and achieving a winning social media marketing strategy!

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