The Best Social Media Platforms for Your Business

Social media. It’s a term that means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. Some people use it to connect with old friends while others capitalize on its unique ability to grow their brand. The real question is: how? Well, the answer isn’t cut and dry. It depends on a number of factors; what is your brand? Who is your audience? What is your goal? So, to help you navigate this brand new world, here’s a breakdown of the 5 most used social media platforms.

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Facebook

Facebook is 2016’s largest social network by both name recognition and a number of users. Facebook has garnered over 1.55 billion users, so it’s a great means of contacting potential customers all over the world for your business. It isn’t just the largest; it’s also the most versatile. Since launching over a decade ago, Facebook has grown from a simple website for college students to an enormous web and mobile platform that all people can use for pleasure, hobby, business, education, or social life. Facebook has unlimited options for any organization, regardless of your industry. It’s easy to share photos, videos, and important company updates. Facebook’s platform requires lower maintenance than other networks, whether you post a lot or just a couple times a week. Your fans won’t decide about you based on frequency (however, you should post at least 3-5 times a week) – depth, importance, and interest are king.

Twitter

Twitter is another social network where you can post anything (limited to 140 characters, of course): sharing short text updates with videos, images, links and anything else you desire. Twitter is a great, fast business connection tool. When you mention another user in your own posts, you are interacting with them. Connect and touch people all over the globe; there are more than 320 million Twitter users around the world. Twitter does require more maintenance and multiple posts/replies/retweets a day to be successful. Hashtags boost posts and if a popular user re-tweets you, your content has the potential to go viral. It’s important to not just extol your own business but share info about your co-users on Twitter with others, too. Be known as informative and knowledgeable – not dull and vacant.

Pinterest

Pinterest is made of digital entries so users save and display content they like and pin them up by category. Pinterest is very visual and, like Facebook, requires little post frequency. Keeping posts organized and SEO can be very time-consuming, however.
Users are mostly females and popular categories are:
• DIY
• Photography
• Food
• Beauty
• Exercise
This conventionality makes it a great marketing tool for businesses in those fields. If you can connect your business content to Pinterest’s audience, more power to you. With ingenuity, you can make Pinterest work for your company and it doesn’t cost you anything to try.

Instagram

Instagram, like Pinterest, is a visual platform based on photos and videos. The network, owned by Facebook, has more than 400 million active users. The platform is entirely mobile. Instagram is another artistic platform so it is industry specific and may not be the best fit for every company. You need its manager to have an eye for detail and art. Instagram can be extremely effective for giveaways and audience interaction. This may not be the best platform for lead generation, but it’s one of the best for cultivating a following!

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the best choice for B2B sales. You’re able to connect with people in similar industries, search specific job titles, direct message potential leads, and post articles from your blog or portfolio. LinkedIn is by far the most business centered social media platform, so content should revolve around your industry. You won’t need to post frequently (maybe 3-5 times a week), but you will need to only post content with value. One important thing to note, if you’re running ads on linked in, be very organized and strategic – LinkedIn has the highest conversion rate for B2B sales but it also has the highest cost per click. A successful LinkedIn campaign will not be cheap, but it will be effective.

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As I’ve said in almost every article I’ve written on digital marketing: it all comes down to strategy. Before signing up for any social network platform, it would be wise to write down your ultimate goals. Are you looking to capture new leads? Facebook and LinkedIn might be the way to go. Are you looking for loyal fans? Instagram and Twitter could be your new best friends. Are you in a niche market and needing a direct line to your target audience? Give Pinterest a try. The best part is, you don’t have to be committed to just one! Facebook is always a great starting point, but any successful business is going to have multiple platforms. Try them out and let us know in the comments which ones you use for your business!

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