Managing and maintaining the social media accounts for your business can be a stressful and unwelcome task for many small business owners. Often small business owners and entrepreneurs make the mistake of thinking they have to be on every platform, or they ignore social media all together. Both of these paths are not ideal and can impact the growth of your business.
By avoiding social media altogether, you're not utilizing one of the most effective free marketing tools and also not meeting your customers where they are. Recent research from PEW shows that over 72% of Americans use some type of social media. That includes your current and potential customers.
But what about the other side of the coin? Being active on every social media platform?
For many business owners, this just isn't necessary. Creating content for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Youtube, Pinterest, Snapchat and others is time consuming and, unless you outsource this, can take you away from the logistics of running your business.
Most importantly, you don't need to be everywhere. Utilize the platforms where your customers are, but only when they can be appropriately funneled to your business.
Let's start with an example. Let's say you run an online clothing boutique. Sharing your merchandise offers plenty of visual potential that could thrive on Instagram and Pinterest. Having a presence on Facebook and Twitter could be a great opportunity to share new arrivals and sale information. Lastly, you might choose to be on Snapchat (depending on the age of your potential clients - Snapchat skews younger) to share live views of the clothing.
In this case, it probably isn't necessary to create long form video content for Youtube or do much business networking on LinkedIn. Consumers on LinkedIn aren't looking to shop and Youtube is not generally where customers are looking for this type of product. Shorter form videos on Instagram stories or Snapchat would be ideal to quickly share details of your product that may not be visible in photos.
The Incorporators Ltd. is on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. We don't feel it's necessary to utilize Instagram, for instance, because we are providing a service that isn't very visual. It simply wouldn't translate well to tiny squares. Additionally, most customers looking to form an LLC or who need a Certificate of Good Standing, aren't using Instagram to find a business like ours. If our clients use Instagram, it's generally for personal use. The same goes for other visual platforms like Youtube, Pinterest, and Snapchat.
So which platforms are right for your business?
Think about the type of product or service you offer. Now take a look at an individual social media platform.
1. Would your potential clients be on that platform looking for a product or service like yours?
2. Is it necessary for you to be on the platform to share information and updates?
If you can answer yes to either of these questions, you may want to have a presence on that social media platform. Want to bulk schedule your social media updates? Check out our post where we share 6 social media management tools for your small business. We hope you found this helpful in choosing which social media platforms your business should be utilizing.