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4 Tips on How to Choose the Right Social Media Platform for Your Business

Facebook has the greatest ROI according to industry leader, Hubspot.  That said, many businesses are not seeing the results they want from Facebook. It may be that you’re not using it correctly or consistently.  Or it may be that Facebook is not the right platform for your business.

4 Tips on How to Choose the Optimal Social Media Platform for Your Business

As a small business owner you absolutely do not have time to manage numerous accounts. So take another look at your marketing efforts and consider these factors in choosing the right platform(s) for your business:

  1. The Numbers: what do they tell you? Research each platform to learn who uses that platform and, as importantly, for what reason.  For example, users come to LinkedIn for business/work reasons, not to interact with friends (that’s Facebook). So the numbers may say you’ll reach more of your target demographics on Facebook but the message your communicating is more relevant to a smaller group on LinkedIn Or you may have a fashion/home furnishings brand that consumers need to see to get inspired. Head to Pinterest where the data shows that Pinterest users demonstrate greater intent to purchase. They’re looking for ideas. Net: why people use the platform is as important (or maybe even more important) than who uses the platform.
  2. Content Focus: effective use of a platform requires that you align with the optimal content type for that platform. Creating content is hard and time consuming so only post content that aligns with that platform. Example: you have a product that sells best when a consumer views it in its entirety, e.g.a car where you can see the interior, the exterior and how it functions.  This likely requires long-form video content so the business would look to YouTube. If it’s a B2B company featuring interviews with company owners or industry mavens endorsing the product, look to LinkedIn where your target customer is spending “work” time. Conducting a poll? Go to Instagram. Building a community? TikTok is your platform (FYI–TikTok is not just for kids anymore. Today only 47% of their users are below the age of 30).  You’ll likely have multiple messages, offering in-depth video content on YouTube but fun, engaging visuals on Instagram. Net: your content will only be effective if it aligns with the platform.
  3. Goal Alignment: before you spend time on any social media platform, set goals for what you want out of the effort. You might also use different platforms for different parts of the customer journey. For example, if you’re looking for brand awareness, TikTok with its large communities or Pinterest with a user base looking for inspiration are the right platforms. Then when you’re looking for sales, test some Facebook ads. If you’re building your professional credibility, look to LinkedIn. If you want to promote a visual concept, use Instagram. Net: different platforms have different strengths. Don’t go into this thinking you can create one post and have it be effective on a range of platforms.  Customize to the goal!
  4. Test and Refine: measure more than sales on social media—brand awareness, loyalty, brand reputation, customer satisfaction and more. Each platform has an analytics section for you to learn how you’re doing on their platform. Create a spreadsheet to track which have the highest engagement levels, click-throughs to content, best and worst reach, impressions and more.  Refine your plan to reflect this learning. Develop an ROI factoring in not only the costs (software, services, outside freelancers, cost to make a video and more) but also your work hours to create and post on that platform.  If your hours are breaking the bank, go outside for help.  Do not undervalue the time you put into this. Could it be spent elsewhere and generate more results? Social media is essential today so it may be worthwhile to find a good freelancer who can help you do this better and faster.

Need help with this or other business questions?  SCORE Cape Cod & the Islands provides free, confidential mentoring.  Contact us at [email protected], at 508-775-4884 or on our website at www.capecod.score.org