In this blog, we’ll take quick look at the most popular social media sites and share information that can help you decide where to spend your time and budget. When you’re reviewing these key statistics and information, here are some things to remember:
1.) Think about your audience. Who are they? (Age, Gender, Location, Interests, Issues etc.) It seems simple enough, but very few businesses think about exactly who their audience is. If you don’t know, how will you know where they are or how to communicate with them effectively?
2.) How do your current customers and clients like to communicate right now? Email? Store visits? Snail Mail? Fax? Do they text? Spend a lot of time on their phone? Prefer meeting in-person? Do they share a lot or are they private?
3.) Don’t get lost in the B2B, B2C shenanigans. One thing we forget is that even in spite of all the data available suggesting certain demographics prefer one social site over another, at the end of the day they’re just people. Even if you’re a B2B, remember that people make the decisions in a company, so while LinkedIn or Facebook may seem like a natural fit for a B2B you may find you get more engagement via Snapchat.
4.) Do your clients & customers want to hear from you beyond controlled conversations? Have you asked your clients how they prefer communicating? What about which social sites they use themselves? Why do they use social sites?
5.) Perform a basic audience search using social site ad tools. A perfect example of this is the Facebook Ads Manager. If you’re a business in Alberta focused on fitness, you can use Ads Manager to gage the number of people in the province who are interested in fitness (you can actually go as deep as postal codes!) This will give you an idea of how big your potential audience is on that specific platform. You can do similar things with Snapchat, LinkedIn, Twitter and search platforms like Google Trends. They’re not perfect, but should give you an idea of where your people are.
6.) Find existing clients online by uploading customer email lists to ad platforms. Tools like Facebook Ads Manager and LinkedIn Marketing Solutions allow you to upload customer email lists – that way you’ll get an idea of whether your clients are on the site or not.
8.) Listen and use social listening tools. Tools like Mention, SproutSocial, Google Alerts, Sysomos, Twitter advanced search, even Reddit are helpful if you have no idea where to start. For one, you’ll get an idea of volume on the sites – is your brand or industry mentioned? Products? Services? Competitors? You may find that the social media sites you originally thought would be popular with your audience are not.
9.) Take a peek at your competitors (large and small.) In one company I worked with, we knew a certain large competitor had mega ad dollars to put toward social. Knowing that they had an agency doing research for them, we tagged along for the journey (and it probably saved us time and money!)
When choosing which sites, make sure you’re realistic in terms of the time you have to commit to them and what your goals are. Here are some additional resources:
Sources: SproutSocial, WordStream, ReadyContacts Blog, Hootsuite, Omnicore