For entrepreneurs and established businesses alike, a strong presence on social media is no longer optional — it’s a must-do for anyone who wants to grow a brand and enhance revenue. Unfortunately, we’re a far cry from the social media landscape of even just five years ago — to say nothing of the Internet from a decade ago.
Today, there are many more major social platforms beyond Facebook and Twitter. Pinterest, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube and others create an endless amount of opportunities. They also produce a seemingly infinite amount of headaches as you struggle to gain traction for your content. Could the problem be that you’re not using the correct platforms for your brand?
Why All Social Platforms Aren’t Equal
In years past, all brand exposure was considered good exposure. Today, we know that you can’t succeed by funneling money and time into every platform, even those that only give you a few excellent engagements every month. The reality is simple: the audiences you’ll find across social platforms differ dramatically. What users of each platform want to see and experience differs, too, and that’s before we even consider that different kinds of content perform better on specific platforms. You wouldn’t try to get an important blog post noticed on your YouTube channel, for example. So how do you figure out if you’re in the right place?
Understand Your Audience — and Where They Go
Whom do you want to reach? It can’t be “everyone.” Your business likely has a specific set of target demographics that are most likely to purchase your goods or services. What social media platforms do those audiences use? Investigating this answer is essential. If your primary audience includes mostly women, targeting platforms such as YouTube or LinkedIn won’t yield the same results — those platforms are majority male. Some 60% of YouTube users are men, for example. Pinterest, on the other hand, has an audience that is roughly 80% women. Refocus your efforts where your audience is.
Stagger Content at Sensible Intervals for Your Platform
You can’t be over-eager with content marketing. In other words, don’t dump everything you’ve produced onto your social media platforms within hours. For YouTube, for example, videos that go up two to three times a week will keep viewers engaged over the long term. Even once a week can be okay. On platforms such as Facebook, you need to ramp up to multiple posts per day. While aligning demographics matters, so too does publishing content for your audience at a rate that makes sense for the platform. If you want to be on Twitter and you aren’t publishing tweets for at least half the day, your content becomes lost in the mix.
Don’t Forget to Check Your Metrics
Re-structuring your approach to social media is a smart way to reinvigorate a strategy with flagging success. However, don’t make changes just for the sake of doing so, and try to avoid changing too much at once. Give your efforts time to be reflected in your metrics, whether it’s engagement rates on Twitter or likes and comments on Instagram. With a clear sense of your audience, useful content, and a reliable schedule, you can consistently find the right platforms for your brand.