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A Quick Way to Choose the Right Social Platform for Your Small Business

Valeria
25th February 2015

Choosing the right social media channels can be a challenge for small businesses; the biggest mistake businesses make is setting up accounts on far too many different platforms and then leaving them dormant after the initial push. When it comes to social, an abandoned account is worse than none at all since it makes it look as if the business has very poor communication and some customers may even assume that you’ve stopped trading.

Instead of focusing on the largest social network or the ones that you’re most accustomed to, just answer these two questions to decide where you should spend your time and budget to make the biggest impact:

1. Where is your audience?

While Facebook and Twitter have the largest active audiences, you shouldn’t automatically assume that these two are the best options for your business.  For example, if you mainly sell to other businesses or if your target audience is under 20 Facebook may be a poor fit for you.

Instagram and Snapchat have the most prestige among younger users, Twitter skews more male than female, and millennials are more likely to watch YouTube than Cable/Sky television. Information like this is essential when deciding where to invest, so make sure that you research demographics before creating your account.

Once you have a hunch, take a look at your Analytics; even if you don’t have a social account set up, it’s likely that you’re already getting referrals from social sites. This information can be used as an early indicator of where your key audience consumes the most information and where your content is shared. To find this information, log into your Analytics and go to Acquisition > Social > Overview where you’ll see a list of referring social sites.

2. What is your product?

Is your product attractive? Does your service lend itself to photography? Do people want to see what you do, or do they want to read more about it? Are you more likely to take pictures or write updates? On the simplest level, this helps to figure out whether you’re more likely to maintain a visual platform or post on your blog and primarily link to written content.

If you mainly have visual content, you should definitely consider Instagram and Pinterest. If your content is mainly written, Twitter or LinkedIn are better considerations.

 

These are extremely broad questions, but they help you to narrow down your options to make a commitment to 1-2 platforms that your business can realistically manage on a day to day basis.

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