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Which social media platform is right for your business?

For any business, having a social media presence has become something we as consumers expect.

For many organizations, their social media profile is just as important as their website. Some businesses would even argue that it’s more important.

In the UK, 90% of the population access the internet for personal use every day, and the average amount of time spent each day using social media (via any device) is approximately 1 hour and 50 minutes*. With these statistics in mind, it’s clear to see social media is a major influence and offers a valuable opportunity to reach and communicate with various audiences.

One common misconception that small to medium sized businesses have is that managing social media accounts is easy. The reality is that social media is a time-consuming task. It requires a strategy, careful planning, flair and creativity, as well as an in-depth understanding of the target audience and chosen platform.

Managing social media for a business is not the same as using social media as an individual. One mistake that businesses often make is trying to do too much – it isn’t always necessary to have a presence on every platform. It is often better to manage two or three platforms well, than lots that aren’t at all. The question is, which platforms will deliver the best results for your business?

Identifying the right social platforms isn’t always easy. Start by thinking about your organization, the type of business it is and the industry you are in.

  • Are you B2B, B2C or maybe both?
  • Who are your customers and who would you like to reach?
  • What would you like to achieve?

Once you have the answer to these questions, you can start to consider the platforms which will help you achieve the best results.

Platforms to consider

Facebook

Still one of the most popular social media platforms, Facebook is often the best platform for B2C companies. 95% of businesses worldwide use Facebook in some capacity and, as its users are varied, the chances are that your audience is already using Facebook. Facebook offers great insights for businesses, and presents the opportunity to target your advertising and set up campaigns.

LinkedIn

The obvious choice for B2B businesses, LinkedIn offers extensive professional networking opportunities. In fact, LinkedIn gains two new members every second*.

While it may be considered to be a business only platform, don’t rule LinkedIn out just because you aren’t a B2B organization. LinkedIn can be a valuable platform for attracting talent, so if you are a growing business or looking for new recruits, then it could be worth investing some time and effort in ensuring your business is leveraging the opportunities that LinkedIn can offer.

Instagram

Instagram has grown incredibly quickly over recent years and is the ideal platform for businesses to showcase their creativity and style. Perfect for beauty, fashion, travel and lifestyle brands, Instagram is a great option for any business who wants to show off their products or ideologies using photography and graphics.

Twitter

Twitter has a wide range of uses and is popular with those looking for the latest news, trends and opinions. Twitter is a great place to position your business if you are an expert in a certain field, or if you’re looking to establish yourself (or your business) as a leader in sustainability or corporate social responsibility. Twitter is also one of the places consumers go to complain, therefore monitoring conversations around your brand on Twitter can be vital to offering the highest levels of customer service.

Pinterest

Pinterest is another highly visual platform and, although it hasn’t been in the limelight as much as Instagram, it is still a valuable platform. Its users are predominantly female and it’s definitely the home for all things arts and crafts, homeware, interior design and travel.

Whichever platform/s you choose, the key is to dedicate time and resources to managing them effectively. Remember your goals and always keep your audience in mind when creating posts and planning your content.

*Hootsuite – Jan 2019

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