8 Social Media Platforms That Your Business Should Be Using
Social media has grown dramatically over the past decade and since its constant growth many businesses have decided to hop along for the ride. Using social media for business purposes can be an inexpensive way to connect with potential customers so yet many companies are still not making the most out of this sales opportunity. Here we run through the top 8 social media platforms which businesses should be using and how they can benefit a business.
Arguably one of the most important social media platforms in today’s industry. With a staggering 1.59 billion monthly users on Facebook (Dec 31. 2015 via Wikipedia) every company should be using Facebook regardless of their size. Facebook is used to connect people with friends, family and colleagues.
Why Use Facebook For Your Business?
Facebook is not only used by everyday people but also businesses can use Facebook to create company pages, receive reviews, share events and company updates. Facebook is free to all users and as their tagline states ‘it’s free and always will be’ however if you would like to increase customer traffic to your site then Facebook advertising is available where you can pay a fee for sponsored advertising or to boost your posts.
As a relatively new social media platform, many people are still unaware of Google+ and what it is used for. Google+ is a social network which is an extension of your Google account. What makes it different to Facebook is that Google+ is much less of a sharing with friends platform and more of an interest and community platform. Within this platform you are given the opportunity to choose your interests and follow Communities in which you are interested in.
Why Use Google+ For Your Business?
Google+ may not seem like the trendiest social media platform out there but the truth of it is that because you’re using Google+ from Google you are improving your relevancy to Google search engines alongside improving your local search visibility which is fantastic for smaller to medium sized businesses.
A visual content sharing platform. Instagram is an app which people use to share images of their day to day lives, most notably food and selfies. This app is a fantastic tool for businesses to use to increase social engagement, why? Because people react better to visual content – images and videos, making this app ideal for many businesses. Benefits of using Instagram include increase engagement allowing people to use tags, hashtags, likes and comments to share with friends.
Why Use Instagram For Your Business?
Instagram is more of an informal social media platform allowing businesses to show more of a personality behind the brand, this breaks down that corporate wall between customer and company and allows your customers to see a different side to your company. You can alternate between sales and promotional posts to fun and trending topics to show that you’re not just trying to make money!
Using hashtags within your posts allows you to reach your target market and in turn increase your traffic. Did we mention that the app is free? That’s right, you can advertise your products, brand and services for free. Overall this is a great app for businesses which sell products that can be visually represented.
Often referred to as the ‘Corporate Facebook’, LinkedIn is used widely by businesses and business professionals. This social networking site is a lot more prim and proper than some of the other social media sites within this glossary. Used primarily to show off your skills, on LinkedIn you can create a professional personal profile including your previous jobs, work experience, training and awards, recommendations and references.
Why Use LinkedIn For Your Business?
Alongside your personal profile you are able to create a company profile. Company profiles are a great way to tell the world about your company credentials, history and job vacancies. As well as showing your company and personal achievements, LinkedIn also allows you create and share content with your connections, check out what you’re competition are doing and also differentiate yourselves from your competition. Other benefits of using LinkedIn for your company include you being able to advertise job vacancies and improve your ranking in search engines.
Pinterest is a virtual pin board for users to pin, like, share and follow images which appeal to them. Users create boards which have a focus such a ‘Bedroom Design’, from creating this board the user can then use the search bar to look for bedroom designs which they like, when they find something they like, they can then pin it to their board. Pinterest is like an online scrap book, anything you see online can be pinned to one of your boards and then you can reference back to it later on.
Why Use Pinterest For Your Business?
Businesses can benefit from using Pinterest because it is a great platform to encourage brand customer interaction. You can create boards relating to products which you sell or that your customers may be interested in then fill the boards with relatable images including your products. You are able to link back to your site so if a potential customer sees something that they like then they can find it and buy it on your site.
Pinterest is an informal tool where customers can organically find you through finding your pins, if they like what they see they can follow your brand, a particular board or pin one of your posts to a board of their profile. Pinterest is a regularly indexed site by search engines which provides a lot of opportunity to achieve SEO using keywords and unique images. Other benefits for businesses include your ability to build a brand reputation, customer relationships and increase traffic to your ecommerce site through sharing products.
Snapchat is a video and photo messaging app used globally. Users can use this app to share their day to day lives with their friends and family through sending photos or up to 10 second long videos. Users are able to send snapchats directly to people or share them on their stories which all of their friends can then watch as many times within a 24hour period.
Why Use Snapchat For Your Business?
Only recently has Snapchat become more relevant to businesses and companies. Snapchat used to be more of a personal app where you may only have a handful of friends which you shared videos and images with however with popular celebrities and brands joining the Snapchat hype, everyone has begun sharing their Snapchat usernames. Customers are generally very intrigued and dare I say it, nosey, as to what celebrities get up to behind closed doors. Brands can use snapchat to preview upcoming product lines, special events or simply what is happening in the office.
Snapchat has a Discover section where 23 media companies show live updates to keep customers updated, these companies include MTV, BuzzFeed and Sky Sports. Other forms of advertising on the app include Filters where people can take a selfie of themselves with the filter as an overlay and sharing it with friends, on stories or sending it to the company which acts as online promotion.
Admitted, Filters and Discover would cost your company a pretty penny to use so how can a small to medium size company use Snapchat to their advantage? Simply share your Snapchat username with your customers via another social media platform such as Facebook or Twitter and then add videos and images to your story about what your company is doing, special events that you’re taking part in or new products, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by how many customers engage with your brand.
Twitter is a social media platform which primary selling point is its 140 character limit. What’s so great about having a character limit? It allows users to quickly scroll through their twitter feed and instantly get a gist of what each tweet is about. Twitter users are also able to include links, photos, videos, GIFSs and polls.
Why Use Twitter For Your Business?
Twitter is a fantastic social platform for businesses and customers to use because users can directly contact each other. This lack of boundaries allows consumers and businesses to build a brand relationship and communicate easily.
Youtube is a free video sharing social platform used by millions of us every month. YouTube allows users to upload videos on any topic to the site and share globally. Many businesses have become successful through using YouTube alone however if you plan to use YouTube as a side social media strategy within your marketing campaign then there are still many benefits which you can expect to see for your business.
Why Use YouTube For Your Business?
No matter what your business, there is almost definitely something which you can make a video about including new products which have just been delivered, video tutorials on how to use your products or updates to your overall company. People spend endless hours each month watching videos online and chances are that if your content is relevant and tagged correctly then it will be watched.
Creating an online video can be as easy as recording it on your mobile phone and then uploading it to the site, a big budget is not advised just a little bit of patience and a good idea. Benefits of using YouTube to promote your business include your increased site authority, ability to appear on Googles search engine for your video as opposed to your site and the ability to track your customer views via Google Analytics.
If you are not currently using social media within your marketing campaign and would like to know more information about the benefits of each social media platform then don’t hesitate to Contact Zelst directly where we will be more than willing to help you to come up with a successful social media strategy for your business.