Just as every business’s products and customers are unique, so too are each business’s marketing needs. For your business, do you aim to use social media to boost your site’s SEO, or are you most concerned with customer engagement? Are you trying to reach customers in particular age groups, or are you trying to reach as many general users as possible? Asking yourself the following questions can help you decide which social media platforms would be most effective for your brand.
What Type of Media Will You Post?
Certain types of media thrive on some networks but sink on others. For photos, you may want to focus on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, Reddit, and Instagram. For articles, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn will probably be the most helpful.
What Do You Aim to Achieve?
Using social media can help you in four main areas: SEO, generating traffic to your site, brand exposure, and customer engagement. When it comes to generating traffic to your site, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, and Reddit are great tools. Facebook and Twitter are also helpful for engaging customers, along with YouTube, SlideShare, and Google+.
How Many Users Do You Hope to Reach?
Facebook boasts the most potential unique views with its network of about 1.1 billion people. YouTube follows close behind with just under 1 billion users. Next is Twitter with about 500 million and Google+ with roughly 350 million.
Where Can You Find Your Target Audience?
Users between 25 and 34 make up the largest age group on Google+ while those between 34 and 44 as well as those 55 and up comprise large groups on LinkedIn. On Facebook, expect users between 45 and 54 to make up a large portion of your followers. For younger crowds between 18 and 24 Reddit takes the cake, and for those under 18 Google+ and Pinterest are especially popular.
What Skills Do You Need to Post to Each Network?
Now that you have an idea which networks you should concentrate on, it’s time to consider the skills you’ll need to run successful social media campaigns on those networks. Assess the skills and resources currently available to your business and decide proactively if additional staff or external help will be needed.
Copywriting skills will be helpful for almost all social networks, but if you plan to focus on YouTube, Instagram, and Pinterest a dedicated writer may not be necessary. Graphic design is essential when posting to Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, and SlideShare. Videography will be most helpful for brands focusing on YouTube, of course, and photography skills will come in handy for those posting to Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. Finally, trend spotters will help you in any area as they understand what your target audience lives and breathes.
Considering your goals, your target audience, and the resources available to your brand, which networks have you set your sights on so far?