Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Snapchat…the list goes on and on. With all of these social media sites, how is a small business ever supposed to keep up? Exhale a huge sigh of relief because you don’t have to be on every social network to have a powerful online presence. The key is to strategically select which sites will have the biggest impact for your business, and then to focus on posting excellent content to those sites.
Ask yourself these five questions to determine which sites are the best fit for you and your business:
1) How much time do you want to invest? Some social media sites require more frequent posting than others to be successful. Decide how often you want to post and how long you want your posts to be, then determine which social media site is the best match for your time commitment. Not sure which sites have the highest frequency of posting? Look at profiles that belong to other businesses to see how often they post.
2) What kind of content can you realistically produce? While infographics on Pinterest are awesome, they take a lot of time and a high level of skill to create. Posting video from your phone to vine, on the other hand, can be done on the fly without any special knowledge or equipment. If you have the resources to blog or create visually interesting graphics, then do it! But if that’s just not realistic, stick to social media platforms that are easier to maintain.
3) What social media sites does your target market use? If your typical customer is 65, some of the newest social media platforms (like snapchat or swarm) are probably not right for you. Stick with the social media platforms that are most likely to connect you to potential customers. One way to find out the sites your typical customers use is to simply ask them. Another helpful resource is the Pew Research Center’s social media fact sheet.
4) What social media sites do you enjoy and use personally? Let’s face it, it’s a lot easier to spend time online if you are on a social media site you understand and enjoy. Using sites that you are already familiar with is the easiest way to make sure your posts fit the site’s etiquette and format. To ensure you will keep posting long term, select a social media platform that doesn’t feel like just one more thing to cross off your very full to-do list.
5) What’s working for you and what isn’t? Measure and adjust after a trial period. If you give youtube a try and you still aren’t seeing any traffic after 12 months, then consider deactivating the account and focusing your efforts on something new. The best way to see if something is working or not is to post consistently for several months before making any judgments because social media engagement can fluctuate from week to week. Once you decide to abandon a social network, make sure you delete the page. Having a profile that doesn’t get updated is worse than not having a profile at all!
Don’t let social media intimidate you! With a little planning you can maintain an engaging online presence, without it taking over your life. If you have questions about social media or need more direction to determine which sites might be right for you, our Marketing Specialist would be happy to speak with you. Check out the Enertech social media pages for inspiration.