Social Media tip of the week: what to use, when

Instagram. Pinterest. Facebook. LinkedIn.  Twitter.  Where do you start when defining your social media strategy?  Which platform is right for you?  Which ones will work hardest for YOUR particular business and which ones can you go without?

I'm about to tell you.

WHAT
First off, consider what it is that you are trying to achieve with your social media: Are you wanting to educate?  Inform?  Show a curated portfolio of your work?  Offer advice and tips?  

TYPE
Next, consider what type of content you'll likely be publishing (guesstimate 90% of what your content will look like, consider the other 10% a bit of flex to move and shift to respond to the changing dynamics within your industry)

WHERE
Figure out where your customers (both current and potential) are hanging out. Are they big into one platform but haven't quite figured out another? Conduct a bit of market research to get answers to the types of questions that can help you figure out where they are.

FACEBOOK
The biggest social media platform by a long shot and is probably where the bulk of most businesses' customers are hanging out. It offers a variety of opportunities to connect with and promote your business. But to make it work, you need to be doing things a bit differently these days: showing the personal, human side of the business, videos, going live and generally encouraging engagement.  This platform is ideal for most businesses, especially those that would appeal to a wide variety of audiences.

LINKEDIN
If you're establishing yourself as an expert in your industry, then this is your platform. This space is ideal for editorial content, professional networking and lead generation.  You need to be writing blog posts and articles that educate and inform rather than outright sell.

TWITTER
This is a great platform if what your business is based on is news, announcements, journalism and one-liners.  To be successful here, content needs to be easily digestible and disseminated in just a few characters. If your brand is largely built on visuals, this is not the platform for you.

INSTAGRAM
If you're business is reliant on visuals and imagery, then you'll need to be playing over here. But you should be boasting some seriously good pics that aren't low res, blurry or dimly lit.  Be on your A-game to fit in with the other kids.

PINTEREST
If you're in a creative field that relies heavily on imagery and visuals then you need to be focusing a lot of your digital time on this corner of the internet.  It boasts more female than male users which allows you to refine your target market and cater your message to a specific demographic. To work, it does however require a lot of consistent activity, so be prepared to spend a substantial amount of time here getting it right and generating content to grow your monthly views. 

Of course, you don't need to be on every platform out there to make social media work for you - choose one or two and do them DAMN well.  Refine your message on each platform to ensure it works for that particular audience.

But this is what I do day in and day out, so if you need any help, flick me a mail: info@shoutandco.com