If your business isn’t on social media, you’re missing out. Social media has become an essential marketing channel that you can’t afford to ignore.
However, with over 200 social media platforms to choose from, it’s hard to know which one is right for you. And you can’t realistically be on every platform.
So whether you’re just getting started on social media or you’re considering expanding to new platforms, this article is for you.
We’ll make the choice of which social media platform to choose for your business less overwhelming by walking you through a step-by-step process.
It all starts with determining the following for your business:
What are your social media marketing goals?
The first step to choosing the right platform is to determine your social media marketing goals. Do you want to engage followers? Share new content? Find new leads and customers? Drive sales? Increase brand awareness? Offer customer support?
Any of these are viable goals and you can probably achieve more than one. But first you need to make your goals specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based (SMART).
That way, you can measure success and have a better chance of reaching a desirable outcome. Ultimately, your social media marketing won’t be a success unless you set goals.
What is your social media marketing budget?
Next, it’s important to be realistic about your available resources. If all you have to run your social media presence is a part-time intern, you’ll be limited in how many platforms you can be on.
So set a budget from the outset so you know what you have to work with. That way, you don’t disappoint yourself if you can’t market on social media as much as you’d like.
What type of social media content do you want to create?
Different social media platforms cater to different types of content. For example, YouTube is for videos, Pinterest and Instagram are for images and short videos, Medium and Quora are for long-form written content, and Twitter is for 280-character text content.
The type of content you’re interested in creating and sharing will help determine what social media platform(s) you should choose. So decide early on what you’re interested in publishing.
Who is your target audience?
If you haven’t defined it already, define your target audience (aka your ideal customer).
Be as specific as possible. Narrow down your target audience by age, gender, education level, income status, and more.
The more specific your target audience, the easier it will be to choose a social media platform.
What social media platforms does your target audience use?
At this point, all that’s left for you to determine is which social media platforms your target audience spends the most time on.
According to Datareportal, social media users are on an average of 7.4 platforms. But not every platform is the same. You need to look at the demographics of each one to see where your target audience is likely to be active.
For example, younger generations might have a Facebook, but they are less likely to be as active on it as they are on Instagram and TikTok.
Likewise, far more women use Pinterest than do men. So find the platform that best matches your target audience demographic. For example, if you sell teenage clothing, you might choose to be on TikTok.
That’s it! Now you know how to choose the right social media platform(s) for your business. Once you’ve chosen, it’s time to leverage automation tools and content calendars to put your social media marketing strategy on autopilot. Only then will you begin to reap the full benefits of social media.
Just be sure to follow all the rules of whatever platform you choose. If you’re not careful, you could end up with an account suspension that you’ll then need to reverse.
Before you know it, you’ll be attracting more leads and gaining more customers than you thought possible. But it all starts with choosing the right platform.