There are a lot of social media apps out there vying for your attention, but here are some of the big ones and some things to consider before jumping in.
Facebook is great for people over 35 but it is a busy market place and you really need to be posting very regularly to get any exposure on someone’s news feed organically (i.e. for free). Paying to be seen is better and I have been finding lately that boosting posts is getting better reach than paid advertising. That is how Facebook is currently working.
Facebook is also giving preference to group interaction and video content. So you need to be sharing things from your business page that align with Facebook’s current trends and predilections. And these change occasionally too, so keeping up with what Facebook likes can be a full time job!
If you are posting regularly from your business page, building your audience through likes and followers, linking to your website content and using great images or videos then you are ahead of most small business owners – you should pat yourself on the back – it is not small thing!
I find Instagram tends to attract a different audience and it is often, but not always, where brands follow other brands, or small businesses follow other small businesses, rather than individuals sharing photos. Because Instagram is such a visual platform, photos are king and great images will help your followers to connect with your brand.
Instagram is owned by Facebook these days so you can share the same content across both platforms at the same time by asking Instagram to push it from Instagram to your Facebook business page if you have them both setup and linked, saving you time and getting you extra brand exposure.
Canva is an amazing platform where you can create gorgeous images, memes and business collateral for free or for a small fee you can get the upgraded version to develop even more gorgeous things.
Canva is kind enough to tell you which sizes of images and posts the various social media platforms prefer so whether you want to make a Facebook post, an Instagram post or a blog post header, it will give you the correct dimensions for you to create your images within.
This way they easily comply with what they are looking for, meaning you are more likely to have your posts shown in others’ news feeds and gain more exposure organically.
Pinterest is another interesting platform for growing your business. Some people think of it as social media, but in reality it works like a search engine for images. These images can be linked back to your website, your blog or your latest free offer and provide another different audience for you to share your brand and your content with.
While the majority of Pinterest users are women (over 80%), they are not all pinning pictures of home décor (although I confess I am very guilty of this) or gardening tips (also guilty). Pinterest can be a powerful driver for traffic to your website if you use it correctly and wisely. Pinterest have very strict terms around how you use their site to promote yours and you will gain amazing traction if you play by the rules. Abuse the privilege though and you may well be cut off.
Snapchat for business? Maybe or maybe not. Snapchat is a camera that is connected to your friends and is probably where your kids or grandkids hang out. You can do all sorts of weird and wonderful image treatments and even produce 3D images in Snapchat. Emojis are big on Snapchat.
If you want to find out more about Snapchat, then head over to YouTube and watch a confident teenager with black nail polish show you how to use it. It’s actually a really intuitive drawing program and it is a good place to practice things like image balance, use of colours, filters, emojis, text styles and so on.
The images on Snapchat don’t last long, so if you are spending time creating online collateral for your business then Snapchat doesn’t keep it long – but again it depends on your brand. If 10 – 15 year olds are your target market then Snapchat may just be the thing that takes your business to the next level. Never say never.
And then of course there is Linked In. Which is kind of like Facebook stories for your professional story. But instead of sharing personal insights or what you had for lunch, you share stories or articles you have written, or found interesting written by other professionals and it is a great way to build your professional credibility. It is a lot more than a place to simply update your CV.
It’s also a great way to keep track of work colleagues and professional contacts that you have known for 15 years but never contacted. Because in the world of business sometimes it’s not what you know but who you know and if you’ve worked together in the past, you just might work together again.
I was at a face to face networking function recently and someone mentioned that they were keen to connect with a certain business. I happened to have a contact who I had worked with in a past life who I knew was now a significant player within that business. I was happy to connect them up so that both their businesses could benefit. And that’s really what Linked In is all about – networking.
No matter where you find yourself and your business succeeding in an online setting, it is important that you always remain on brand, professional and family friendly. And if you try one app and it doesn’t seem to work for you, give it at least 3 months of consistent weekly effort before you move on.
Try multiple apps and see which ones work better for your brand. Creating great content and distinctive branding for one platform often means you can translate that quickly and easily for a different platform without having to go right back to the beginning. Maximise your brand exposure by thinking cleverly about how collateral can be utilised across several apps. Getting known in the online world is a long term game, not something that can materialise overnight. Like most things, the effort that you put in will be reflected in the benefits you get out of your efforts.
Found a spelling or grammatical error in this post? Then contact me as soon as possible and let me know. In return for your super proof reading, I will offer you a free 30-minute review of your digital presence and some fresh ideas you can try out for free.
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