There are so many social networks these days. If you’re new to social media, or you’re a startup and you’ve been busy with other things, how do you choose the best one? Here are some ways you can get through the maze of choices you have.
Pick from the Most Popular Networks
Don’t go with that social network your cousin started as his senior class project. There are only 14 users, and besides, there are still a boatload of bugs! Choose from the most popular ones:
Where’s the Competition?
Check with other brands like yours. If you sell makeup, you probably want to be on Instagram and Pinterest because they are good for visual brands. Additionally, Pinterest’s audience is largely female. If you sell real estate, Facebook and Twitter might be better choices for you. Again, see what your competition is doing.
Is Your Demographic There?
Please don’t say your product or service is “for everyone.” The narrower your audience, the easier it is to choose a social media platform. If you don’t know, Pew has a terrific explanation of the Demographics of Social Media Users. For instance, many CEOs are on LinkedIn, but not on Twitter. So if CEOs are part of your demographic, you’d be better off on LinkedIn.
Choose the One You Like Best
You’re more likely to post frequently if you choose the place you like to go. I’m a firm believer that if you really learn to use a platform, you can get tons of traffic there. My brother, who had a plumbing service, had tremendous success with Yelp, for instance. Since it’s locally based, having good reviews on Yelp can be valuable to a local business like a plumber or electrician.
Pay Attention to Where the Action is!
Even if you really like the platform, if people post and run, that’s probably not a good option for you. For instance, Google Plus doesn’t seem to attract and hold people’s attention for very long. If you must be on a platform without much action, monitor your efforts and see if it’s worthwhile. Use your analytics to check out what’s working and what’s not. Here are analytics for Twitter, in case you’re wondering.
Realize That Social Media Isn’t Free
Sure, signing up is free. But will you be available to post? How much time can you give it? If you can’t give it the time it deserves, hire someone to do it for you! Ahem. I might know of someone! And should you do your own social media? I don’t think so!
Get a Reality Check
Hire a social media manager for an hour or two to brainstorm your proposed choice. That might be the boost you need to get started. And you’ll feel that you’re on the right track if you do. Otherwise, have someone take it over for you, after you’ve worked out a strategy together. By the way, here are ten worst ways to hire a social media manager!
Check That Your Name is Available
You want a similar name across platforms. You may need to change the name you use slightly across platforms, but make sure that you use a recognizable logo on each.
Set up Social Accounts
Even if you don’t use an account, grab the name so you can use it later. I call that squatting. Later, when you’re ready to start using it, it’ll already be there for you. If you don’t grab the account, someone else might nab it!
Be Successful with One First
You don’t have to start all your social media platforms at the same time! Get one ball in the air before you start juggling with three. And you might not need or want a second ball, depending upon your success! Startups in particular can do a staggered start.
How Did You Choose to Get Started?
Leave me a comment and let me know! Thank you.