[bctt tweet=”Planning your social media for business is like creating the blueprint to your dream home.” username=”michellearbore”]
It’s essential to design your dream home right. When you design your dream home, it is designed to suite the occupants’ preferences and needs.
Similarly, you can think about your social networks the same way – there are people you want to attract and with whom you want to interact with. That means you need custom designed and inviting places where they feel comfortable connecting with you online.
Each social network has its own culture, best practices, and purpose. Think of each social network you us as a different room in your dream home that you need to plan and design for its specific purpose.
Getting Started with Social Media
- Define Your Goals: The first thing every single business owner should think about before starting with social media is their goals. You need a sense of direction – a clear vision of where you want to go and what you want to achieve from your social media. What do you want to get out of your social media? I’m sure your first reaction is probably going to be “more sales,” but you need to think about what actually drives those sales? Another thing to think about is what engages your community? Establish a purpose that aligns with what your community responds to.
- Who’s Your Target Market? Is your target market small to medium sized companies, large companies, do you sell to B2B or B2C, how much money do they make, male or female, age range, location, etc. Figuring this out will help me guide you to the social media platforms that will work for your business.
- Where’s Your Audience? Don’t assume, know! Do your homework first before you assume your audience is on all of the social media platforms. This is where your target market comes into play. Once you find out where they are, make sure you understand what they are doing there. Watch how they interact with brands and then determine if you should be there.
- What Platforms Are Your Competitors Using? There’s no rule that says you can’t spy on your competition! Make a list of your local competitors and see what platforms they’re on, what they’re doing, and what’s working for them. Jot down what you like because that is something we can work into your social media strategy. Then look at other companies who are not local, but still in your field, and look at the same as mentioned above. This will help us decide on the platforms to focus on and what types of content may work with your audience.
- What Type of Content Are You Going To Share? Make a list of ideas. If you’re unsure, this is something my clients and I brainstorm about at the very beginning, and then they let me manage their accounts by finding content for them and sharing it on all their platforms. This has been very educational for me, because I get to learn more about client’s business. Always remember the 80/20 Rule – 80% helpful information, such as articles you find or your own blog posts and 20% about your company, such as specials, product information, and so on.
- Which Social Media Platform is Right For Your Business? Not all social media platforms are going to be right for every business. I do suggest creating accounts on all platforms, that way your business name cannot be taken by anyone else. I also suggest picking 2 platforms to focus on and giving them 6 -7 months before throwing in the towel. After that time frame you see they’re not working, move on to another platform. Remember, social media does not happen overnight.
Now that you have your goals and target market figured out, it’s time to figure out which platform to use.
Which Social Media Platform Should You Use?
Use if you sell to B2B
- It’s the most overlooked social network out there
- LinkedIn is very credible and demonstrates your expertise
- Used for sharing industry articles and general professional content
- As of November 2016, LinkedIn has more than 400 million members in over 200 countries and territories.
- In the US alone, there are over 122 million members.
- LinkedIn’s sweet spot is among 30-49-year-olds where 24% of the users are men versus 19% are women.
Use if you sell to B2C
- It’s definitely more fun and visual.
- As of September 2016, there are over 1.55 billion monthly active users.
- As far as mobile users, there are over 1.39 billion active users.
- 23% if users login at least 5 times per day
- 47% of Americans say Facebook is their #1 influencer of purchases
- 70% of marketers use Facebook to gain new customers
- The most common age demographic is ages 18-29 (87% of users), 30-49 is 73%, 50-64 is 63% and 65+ is 56%
- Facebook users are 77% female and 66% male
- Highest traffic occurs mid-week between 1-3pm – according to Forbes, if you post at 7pm, it will result in more clicks on average than posting at 8pm
- On Thursdays and Fridays, engagement is 18% higher
- Future outlook is strong emphasis on video content (Facebook Live)
Use if you sell to B2B
- Twitter is extremely dynamic, visual and fun
- Ideal for the younger market
- There are over 550 million users
- 34% of marketers use Twitter to successfully generate leads
- 320 million monthly active users
- 80% active users are on mobile devices
- 24% are men and 21% are women
- 37% are between 18-29 and 25% are between 30-49
- Great for customer service
- An effective tool to build awareness and drive traffic to your website or blog
Use if you sell to B2C
- It creates inspiration for both business and personal use
- As of September 2016, there are over 100 million users
- 85% of those users are female
- 45% of users are from outside the US
- 67% of users are under the age of 40
- 66% of users pin things that inspire them
- Can be an inexpensive way to position you or your company as a thought leader in your industry
Use if you sell to B2C
- There are over 400 million monthly active users
- Users share over 40 billion photos, and now sharing an average of over 80 million photos per day
- Considered the most important social network by more American teens (32%) than any other network
- Over 75% of users come from outside the US
- 29% are women and 22% are men users
- 53% are 18-29 years old, 25% are 30-49, 11% are 50-64 and 6% are 65+ years old
- 96% of US fashion brands use Instagram
- Photos with faces get 38% more likes
- Posts with at least one hashtag(3) average 12.6% more engagement
Now that you know which platform to use, how do you know what time to share? First, you want to look at your insights, but here is a handy cheat sheet of tested days and times. All you have to do is click here – no opt-in required!
Comment below with your social media goals and which platform you are going to use for your target market.
In my next blog post, I will talk about some Must Dos for your social media.
Keep Calm & Love Social Media!