The ongoing global pandemic has made social media an even more integral part of daily lives. With most of the world stuck in their homes, both individuals and businesses have started engaging with their peers through online platforms more.
With people connected more than ever before to their social media feeds, it’s the perfect time to ensure your social media marketing is up to scratch. With all the different platforms out there, how do you know which ones will work best for your business?
Below we look at each of the popular social media platforms, who uses them and what type of business will benefit most from their usage.
It’s essential only to utilise the social media channels you have the time to update. Poorly managed platforms can give a bad impression. So, with that said, let’s begin.
Possibly the most well-known name in the social media world would be Facebook. With over 50 million daily active UK users, is it any surprise? Generating billions of dollars through Facebook ads – this platform offers something that no other social media platform currently offers.
Facebook is the best way to share content like external links, which can be clicked straight from the posts. This platform allows for the creation not only of business profile pages but also common interest groups. These interest groups can serve to create a tight-knit community of engaged users who will invite other like-minded people, increasing your reach and engagement.
One thing to remember here is to avoid “clickbait” (content that lures a user into clicking on links but then offers little or no further benefit). While this type of content can be very successful in terms of instant engagement, it will devalue your page and eliminate trust with your followers in the long run.
The demographics of Facebook users are diverse, with the platform catering to both the young and old. As such, most businesses can benefit from a strong presence on Facebook
Facebook is particularly useful for B2C marketing. Small local businesses can reach and build a strong local following, and larger companies can connect with their audiences here and offer a customer service outlet. If you have a product or service to sell, the Facebook ads platform is very powerful.
Twitter differs from Facebook and Instagram in that it moves quickly, content has a shorter lifespan, and there’s a 280 – character limit.
Twitter is primarily an information or news-based platform as opposed to imagery and video, although the new Fleets function is similar to Instagram or Facebook stories. This makes it the perfect platform for the delivery of brief and to-the-point information.
The ability to quickly “retweet” content from other users’ pages results in immediate promotion of both your page and theirs at the same time. Twitter, therefore, serves as a great place to network with other like-minded people. While Twitter is not a platform that will usually grow a following quickly, it has many beneficial networking hours in which to participate.
Twitter is great as a customer service platform, with users reaching out to brands via tweets. It works well for those that like to share thoughts or ideas and is excellent to nurture B2B relationships. It’s a very reciprocal platform with its own little etiquette. You can build long-lasting relationships here.
Because Twitter allows you to “hear” what other people are saying, it can be a great place to engage with your followers 24/7. We would not recommend this platform as the first choice for businesses that rely heavily on photography and imagery.
TikTok is strictly for video content. Videos created on TikTok are 15 seconds long. Four of these short videos can be joined together, creating 60 seconds of content, which is the maximum allowable.
TikTok can be an excellent platform to build a large following quite quickly If you have a bit of creativity. You can engage in the various challenges which regularly pop up, from viral dance routines to lip-syncs and adapt them to your business.
TikTok also provides a way to create tutorials in easy to digest short bursts. Makeup artists, for instance, can video themselves doing sped up makeovers, only highlighting individual bits; bakers use this platform as a very condensed way to teach a recipe. This means that in only 60 seconds, the user walks away feeling as though they have truly learned something of value.
The demographic here is generally younger, such as “Gen X.” This is a great place to attract a more youthful following. We would recommend this platform for B2C businesses who have a little bit of time to create the videos for posting. It works particularly well for businesses that create beautiful things, such as beauticians, makeup artists, chefs, bakers etc. It can also be utilised for other business types if you can think outside the box and have time to create content.
If eye-catching imagery and visual content is your thing – then Instagram is your platform. The Instagram grid acts similarly to an online photo gallery. In contrast, Instagram Stories allow you to share information in a fun and interactive way without upsetting your page’s aesthetic.
Instagram offers something that other platforms do not. This platform is excellent for showing your wares. Whether it’s cakes or handbags, jewellery or fashion – consistent posting of beautiful images can go far.
More than any other platform, it is crucial that you consider the quality of your imagery here. Out of focus and fuzzy photos will not get the engagement.
The other thing to consider when utilising Instagram is the use of hashtags. There is no “search” function other than through hashtags or usernames, so make sure you use a hashtag research tool to help you choose the best hashtags for each post. This platform is “like” and “save” based but does not nurture back and forth engagement in the way that Facebook or Twitter do. We recommend this platform for B2C who rely heavily on images to engage with their audience.
Like TikTok, you can utilise reels innovatively and creatively to provide value to your customers on Instagram, so consultancy and information-based businesses can also get great engagement and success on the gram.
LinkedIn is the ‘professional’ social media network. The focus here is on careers, learning and business. LinkedIn offers a premium version that costs money each month to access some pretty powerful tools and learning via courses.
Sales Navigator is another solution provided by LinkedIn, which is useful for sales professionals and people trying to get leads.
Because the majority of the people on this platform are professionals, it suits those offering B2B services, knowledge services such as coaching and teaching, as well as those looking to network.
If video content is your forte, then YouTube is an ideal place to focus your efforts. No other platform offers the same ability to disperse video content as YouTube. Unlike TikTok, there is no limit to the length of your videos. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a short informational how-to video or a longer question and answer session. Businesses big and small alike can use YouTube to share videos across the world.
It is essential to consider your audience and provide value with your videos. Whether you are teaching new skills, providing entertainment or demonstrating your skills, you should always offer watchers value.
When aiming content towards children or younger demographics, remember that the attention spans will be much shorter. You will ideally need to post very engaging videos that run for under 5 minutes.
Once you have a very well-established subscriber base, you’ll be able to know your audience and lengthen your videos. Although adults have a greater attention span, you still need to ensure the delivery is precise, the video quality is high, and the content benefits the watcher.
We recommend this platform for both B2C and B2B, who have a story to tell or information to share. Rather than writing an essay that may not be read, YouTube allows for a large amount of content to be more easily consumed by your followers.
Pinterest is like a mood board. It’s great for people to get inspiration for projects they want to undertake, such as DIY, decorating, Ikea hacks, baking etc. It is also a good website to check out infographics and learn about businesses.
Because most of the content here is repined from content already on the site, Pinterest loves new pins. It’s easy to add content with a Chrome or Firefox browser extension, which allows you to pin ideas from around the web. These pins link back to the website they came from, which can significantly boost website traffic if you’re providing valuable content.
You could create pins to promote blogs on your website, tutorials on your YouTube or products you are selling and drive traffic there.
As it is a very visual platform, it requires some creativity in producing your content, but it can be a fantastic source of website traffic. Pinterest can work well for e-commerce, service-based businesses and knowledge-based businesses. The user demographic tends to be slightly swayed towards females and with the majority of users ages between 18 and 44.
Clubhouse is the new kid on the block, so there’s still a lot of information to be garnered here. Having spent a few days on the platform, we will be writing a more in-depth blog shortly.
This site is audio-based as opposed to videos. Rooms have groups of people talking and a set topic. It has excellent potential for knowledge-based businesses that can share knowledge, teach and offer advice. This proves authority, builds trust and can create lasting relationships and the engagement of services.
As with all social media platforms, you can create posts en masse and post them periodically, but it is crucial to know where you should be posting and what content works best for your followers. When running multiple channels, always tailor your content for each one. If you need some help with strategy, we can create a tailored Social Media Strategy Plan for you or a consultation session to discuss options and provide training where needed.