Whether you're a business or organization that's just starting on social media or pivoting to try a new social media platform, it can get overwhelming to decide what platform to choose.
Here are four key things to consider when picking a social media platform for your brand
1. Go where your target audience is
If you're a brand offering products or services, you should already know your target audience, so go where they are. What are their age, profession, likes, dislikes, and pain points? More importantly, what are their habits on social media, and how are they using the platform.
This article in Business Insider showed that Tik Tok got more traffic than Google in 2021
Because of the uniqueness of Tik Tok and how it prioritizes authenticity, trends like #tiktokmademebuyit and reviews from everyday people allowed people to start using the platform as the go-to platform for honest feedback on products they may want to buy. Recently, Tik Tok has upgraded its algorithm, which operates as a search engine.
2. Go where your competition is
If you're solely relying on your website traffic bringing you brand awareness and sales, then you are already losing out on the free marketing tools social media platforms offer. Since most social media platforms are moving towards operating like a search engine, this gives brands the chance to optimize their profile. Now people can find products and services by industry, products, and even location. A part of market research is checking out the competition, and knowing what platforms they are using, lets you see whether content strategies are working or not. It can help you get some inspiration for curating your feed, the best hashtags to use, and the questions or pain points their current customers are experiencing with their product or services.
Please do not copy them. Be unique. Learn to stand out.
3. Understand the features and tools of the platform you have chosen
One of the biggest mistakes brands make is treating all social media platforms the same. Although they have similar features (videos, live, direct messages, interactive stickers, pictures, etc.), they all have different structures, styles, and app culture.
For example, Youtube is perfect for longer-form content. Unless you upload Youtube shorts, your videos should be uploaded in the 16:9 landscape dimension so it is correctly optimized for the platform. Instagram has short-form content called Reels, similar to Tik Tok content, but they both have different in-app functions such as duet, stitching, interactive poll stickers, and length for videos. While Tik Tok is only a video app, Instagram allows you to post static images /pictures and carousels
4. Be realistic about your capacity and resources
Unless you are outsourcing your social media marketing efforts to an agency or freelancing service, trying to have a social media presence on all the platforms can lead to frustration and burnout. Some social media apps require more work and maintenance than others.
For example, Youtube prioritizes high-quality videos that keep your viewers engaged and coming back for more content. So to get the results you want (growth and leads), uploading a video at least once a week is recommended.
Tik Tok and Instagram, on the other hand, require you to post at least once/ day in some cases.
Ultimately, your efforts will come down to your marketing goals, and with a strong content strategy, it will come together.
Margarette Leandre is a social media strategist and content creator with 5+ years of experience. She helps small businesses and organization create EASY and SMART marketing strategies by leveraging social media.
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