As an entrepreneur, deciding on a social media site to promote your business can be very overwhelming, because of all the choices.
So. Many. Choices.
So the obvious question is… where to start?
You can put any anxiety to rest right off the bat by recognizing that you don’t need to be on every social media platform in existence. In fact, to try to do this is a recipe for disaster. For one thing, doing so will dilute your focus, efforts and resources.
The smart thing to do is to channel your energy into one or a handful of social media platforms that give you the greatest results.
So what’s the BEST social media site for your business?
I wish there was an easy answer, something like… “FACEBOOK! FACEBOOK EVERYTHING.”
But sadly… no.
The answer is going to be different for every business owner, because every business and every entrepreneur is different.
But don’t hyperventilate! Here are some simple steps to take you through the process of determining what social media marketing platform is right for you and your company:
1. Trust the Big 5
You can narrow down your choices (and spare yourself a ton of anxiety) by turning to social media’s so-called “Big 5” first.
The Big 5 are social media’s current heavy hitters and have proven track records as powerful marketing tools for business owners.
They are: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube.
These platforms aren’t disappearing any time soon, and pretty much everyone on the face of the Earth who doesn’t live under a rock is heavily engaging on at least one of them. In other words, if you are trying to reach a potential client, chances are they are on one of the Big 5.
2. Lock on target
As a business owner, you must have a handle on your target audience.
If you do not know exactly who you are trying to reach, you need to revisit your branding.
After all, how are you going to reach an audience if you don’t know who they are?
Once you have an idea of who your target audience is, find out where they are on social media. Where are they engaging, where are they asking questions, where are they socializing?
Find out, and then go there.
Do not make the mistake of assuming that everyone is going to sign up for Twitter just because you are on Twitter. That will happen if your brand is already immensely popular and has a lot of clout, but not otherwise.
Know your audience, locate your audience, and then join your audience.
3. What kind of content producer are you?
Know your audience AND know yourself.
Shoot videos if you are great in front of a camera. Do audio podcasts if you’re amazing at conducting interviews. Write a blog if you can write well.
Then choose a social media platform that leverages your talents.
Alternatively, don’t try to be a on a platform that doesn’t align with your content creation abilities: in other words, don’t be on YouTube if you can’t produce quality videos on a consistent basis.
Keep in mind that delivering bad content is worse than not delivering good content. Putting out inferior content will work against your brand.
4. Don’t forget to have fun
Pick a platform you enjoy.
Yes, using social media for business is 100% work, but it can be fun work.
You are are more likely to stick with it and be consistent if you enjoy it.
Furthermore, your audience will sense when you don’t really want to be there. Remember that social media is SOCIAL and it is very difficult (virtually impossible) to fake it.
It’s okay to lose your passion for one social media platform and then drift to a new one. After all, your target audience does the same thing. If you feel like you want to pull away from a social media platform for a while and try something new, it might be your business intuition trying to tell you something.
5. Understand the nuances
Pick a platform that you are willing to understand on a deeper level than most people.
You are, after all, using social media for business, so you need to treat it like a business (even if it’s fun business).