Social media can be a great tool to help drive traffic to a company website, engage and develop relationships, and offer an online experience that helps communicate a brand.
Many business owners believe they need a presence on every social media network, while others don’t see the value in any. The truth is, not every social media network will benefit every business.
Typically, it’s best to focus on maintaining two to five social networks. The tricky part, however, is knowing which social networks are most beneficial for your business.
What is your social media goal?
Some companies want to engage employees on social media to help foster a culture. Some may wish to engage with customers and potential customers to increase brand recognition and drive website traffic. Defining a social media goal and audience will help determine which social networks to use.
For example, Facebook is typically great for engaging with employees and some vendors. LinkedIn can also be ideal for vendors and possibly potential customers.
Many reporters and journalists are on Twitter, so it is a perfect channel to build rapport with the media.
If you are targeting customers and potential customers, some businesses have had success with Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube. Google+ is almost necessary for search engine optimization.
What do you sell?
If you sell a product or service that is very visual, focus on a social media network that is also visual such as Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook.
If your company is more B2B, LinkedIn is typically the most strategic, as many decision-makers are active on LinkedIn. It is also a great tool for sales people to use for networking and HR to use for employee recruitment.
Is your product or service slightly complicated? Host a YouTube channel with videos that show how it works. Share the videos on other social networks and on your website.
What types of content do you already have?
Has your company already developed case studies or white papers? Share them on LinkedIn and receive a large amount of clicks. Do you have a number of photos that capture your employees working or having fun? Behind-the-scenes photos perform well on LinkedIn and Facebook.
Do you have captivating images of your work or products? Share them on Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook. Also, include an engaging caption and use relevant hashtags.
Articles perform well on LinkedIn and Twitter. It’s a best practice to share your blog articles on all of your social networks to help increase blog traffic. Company press releases also perform well on these channels.
Does your industry use niche social platforms?
Many industries have their own dedicated social media channels. If yours is one of them, seriously consider becoming active on it.
There are hundreds of social media networks that can help a business’s online marketing efforts. When choosing which one to use, keep your goal, audience, content and industry in mind. Strategic choices reap the most rewards.
Kelly Borth is the CEO and Chief Strategy Officer of GREENCREST, a 25-year-old brand development, strategic and interactive marketing and public relations firm that turns market players into market leaders. Kelly is one of 35 certified brand strategists in North America and offers a Build Your Brand DIY Workshop® in Central Ohio for executives who want to learn how to better brand their businesses.