Which social media platform is the best for an organisation?

by

A social media strategy takes time, resources and commitment to achieve any sort of results. Every industry from gardening to banking has some sort of social presence online (or they should).

Not all social media platforms are created equally though. Investing your resources into the wrong platform wastes time and can be detrimental to your overall brand image.

Ask yourself a few questions before you look to a Social Media Strategy:

1. Where are your customers?

What are your customers demographics and where are they likely to be found online? A younger target market will be using different social platforms and using them in a different way than older generations.

Your grandmother isn’t likely to be using Instagram or ‘Tweeting’ about the latest events.

Find out where your customers like to be online and make your presence known on that platform.

2. What Industry are you in?

There is a great disparity between an investment firm and an energy drink company in terms of what platforms they should be using.

This ties back into where your customers are located, but most importantly how your content should be structured.

As an example, an investment firm would be less likely to use graphics to engage with their followers which determines the platforms they should / shouldn’t be using.

3. Are they the right customers?

Every social platform has some sort of inbuilt analytical tool. If you can’t answer the above questions, then use the data provided to help you gauge whether or not your social media efforts are targeting the ‘right’ and relevant customers for your business.

If they aren’t the right customers – then your strategy or platform is off and should be re-assessed.

Let’s look at the different platforms and who / what you should be using them for:

Facebook

Who Should use it?

· Everyone.

What should I post?

· Facebook is a community – use engaging content to interact with your customers and show who you really are as a company.

How often should I post?

· Aim for once a day

· Or at least 4x per week.

Instagram

Who Should use it?

· Travel

· Food

· Lifestyle

· Personalities

· All companies Millennial related

What should I post?

· As a visual only platform:

o Use compelling images & short videos.

o Everything is about providing value – humour, information and relevance are a great place to start.

How often should I post?

· Aim for once a day – at a minimum – 4x per week.

· Use analytics to determine the right amount of and the timing of your posts.

Instagram is a place to visually show your brand voice. Show your office, showcase your team, your events and everything that makes your company great.

But Instagram is not for everyone. If you’re an accounting firm, then your resources would be best spent elsewhere – if you’re a restaurant then Instagram may be your most valuable social platform.

Twitter

Who should use it?

· If you have the time/resources – everyone.

What should I post?

· Interactions: Comment, share and engage with other brands and customers. Any conversation that is being held on Twitter regarding your industry – you should be involved in.

How often should I post?

· 2-3x per day.

· Twitter requires a high level of commitment to remain relevant – consider whether or not you have the appropriate resources before you begin.

With 330 million monthly active users(MAUs), about a four percent increase over last year, Twitter is immensely under-utilized by a lot of businesses.

If your ideal customer is aged below 29, chances are they might be found on Twitter. Twitter itself says that 80 percent of its users are “affluent millennials.” (Hootsuite)

LinkedIn

Who should be Using it?

· Businesses (especially B2B), recruiters and professionals in general.

What should I post?

· As with every other platform, LinkedIn is a way to show your brand voice.

· Arguably the most powerful social tool to showcase your voice in regards to industry relevant topics.

· Share articles, research papers and job descriptions. Keep it professional.

How often should I post?

· 2-4x per week

LinkedIn is a networking event in the form of an online platform. Connect with other businesses, thought leaders and relevant individuals to share your own viewpoint on your industry.

Conclusion

There are countless other social platforms that weren’t listed above – Pinterest, YouTube, and Google + just to name a few.

These are also incredibly powerful platforms depending on your audience.

Take Pinterest for example, which has a 4-1 ratio of females to males. It isn’t typically the first platform that comes to mind when considering starting a social strategy.

If used correctly, Pinterest may be extremely beneficial as it is unsaturated by other businesses in comparison to larger platforms. Pinterest isn’t as easy as posting and sharing, but, if your target demographic is younger females – then a Pinterest strategy may be worthwhile investigating.

Everything is dependent on resources. That is how you determine how often and how many platforms you are posting on / to. There is no one size fits all strategy and each company is different. Use data to determine the correct posting / content strategy for your customers.

Spread yourself across as many platforms as you can BUT only if you can do them properly. It is better to use a few platforms well than to use many improperly.

“It is better to walk alone than in a crowd going in the wrong direction” – Diane Grant.

Just because your competitors are on one platform, doesn’t mean you have to be – use your resources wisely and find the platform(s) that best suit your organization. When in doubt, use data, conduct surveys and find out how your customers like to be communicated with.