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Your Business: In this Social Media take over

10.26.2013
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With today’s online world and our online identities and businesses, is there ever a moment where we think, what effect does our online presence have on us and our business, on the particular platform that we are on? Is it chosen at random? Or are we just signing up on
Facebook and Hi5, as we go or one that we deem to be popular or ones that our
buddies always sign up on? Most likely the latter is true.

Well, now is the time to stop going with the flow, because everything is so digital, it is important to choose the right platform for you business. It is very important in achieving your marketing
goals or reaching the audience you want. It’s always good to understand the options out there and what’s better suited for your business and personal needs. With increasing number of choices, it is essential to strategize and wisely pick the right platform for you.

Now, there are a lot of various different choices of online outlets to promote your business. Hence, check out www.theconversationprism.com. However, for the sole purpose of thinking strategically about which social media outlets to use, we can focus on a few that are well known.

But before that is done, there are a few things that are really helpful in choosing the right kind of social media. 
 

1. What are your goals?

-Improving SEO

-Increasing traffic to your site

-Customer feedback

-Informing about your brand

 

These goals will then help in choosing the right platform for your business, because some social media platforms such as Google+, StumbleUpon, YouTube, maybe better to improve SEO, then say getting meaningful customer feedback. If you just want to know what's on the mind of
your customers, then perhaps, a forum geared towards your specific audience, will be helpful.

 

2. Your Audience. Who do you want to reach out to?

Certain age group, income group, as well as professions can differ in the type of social media used by these people. Such as LinkedIn, which is usually associated with high-income earners (75K and above) and Twitter and Facebook with mostly mid-income earners (25-70K). Again,
this doesn't always have to apply.


3. Type of Media used.

What if you had a photography business? Well then, platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube, may not be a good fit. Well... there can be an exception, if you get really creative! Photos, videos, and articles, are main content of posts, knowing which platform is geared
towards certain media, is great in helping to reach your optimal goal.

Now let's discuss the differences in today's most widely known social media, just so that you can be aware of strategic ways in which you can choose the right social media platform for you.

 

Let's talk about Facebook.

To me it seems like, it's mostly used by underage group (under 18), or either an elderly group, who want to see pictures of their grandbabies. In either way, if you want to target these groups,
FaceBook is the way to go. Facebook page is really helpful, where your business, can get exposure through various different media, photos, articles, and even share events or special sales that your business might have. Never undermine the fact that FaceBook has more than 650 million users worldwide, not to mention half of which use FaceBook through their phones. If you want to spread the word, it is a great place. After all that is the goal of its
co-founder, Mark Zuckerberg. “To make the world open”.

 

Twitter

I would consider twitter, a mini-blog. You can only write 140 characters, and add a picture or small video along with it. Twitter is very limited; however it is great for a constant update of your
businesses new products or services. Loyal followers = loyal customers. Twitter could possibly prove that your customer is really ecstatic about your business, and wants to constantly be up-to-date. However, if your business consists of merchandise, or photography, then you might want to opt for another route.

 

YouTube

This one doesn't need too much explanation. Photos and videos are great for YouTube, and it's used by pretty much all age groups. If you are a videographer, lecturer, or if videos can in anyway help your business achieve its marketing goals. Then this would be great. However,
if you are wanting to advertise on YouTube, that's great, but I would let you know that most of us skip those counting-down commercials if we can.

 

StumbleUpon

StumbleUpon is great, for your page to crossover to those people with interests in the realm of your business. However, that's just by chance and the number of times a user clicks the
“Stumble” button. Your page can be share, etc. However, StumbleUpon has fewer users than say YouTube, Twitter, or FaceBook. Another interesting perk of StumbleUpon, from personal experience, StumbleUpon keeps me longer on it's site than any other social media i've ever used. It's geared towards my interests, so it keeps the momentum going.

 

LinkedIn

Well, this is by far the largest online professional network in the world. It consists of a vast amount of high-income earners. Most LinkedIn users are over the age of 22, working professionals or college graduates looking for a job. Suggestions are: Your business should
somewhat attract this group of people; you can most likely recruit employees here for your business.

 

Google+

Powered by the greatest search engine in the world and passage to all knowledge, Google+ is a great way to increase SEO. Public profiles automatically come up in the ranks. Along with its many feature of Google Authorship for publishers, Google+ has many tricks embedded to get your page up the ranks. As far as the media types, Google+ supports any kind of media, in fact, it seems as though the icons that appear for links or photographs are larger than those on FaceBook. One video can cover the entire page on Google+. It's pages or profile layout is well verse designed as well.

 

Pinterest

Graphics, Photos, Infographics! You just pin, pin, and pin your favorites. Again, this is a very popular site, for mainly visuals.

 

Instagram

Lastly, this is a place where pictures get a little more personal. Many fashionistas post pictures to promote their designs. Instagram is well known to attract more of a younger crowd, who are avid smartphone users, as Instagram is almost entirely used from a mobile device.

Every social media platform will have its up sides and flaws. You can always mix up, depending on your goals. If you want to use Pinterest and Instagram for photographs and use twitter to update your customers, then you could probably work it that way. There is no limit to how
many social media platforms you can sign up to join, but using it inefficiently may be not be a good choice. Not to mention it may not be a adequate use of your time. Carefully evaluate the pros and cons of each, and outline your businesses' marketing goals, this will be more effective as far as digital marketing through social media.

This article was written by the Imaginovation team.  They are a Raleigh web design and software development company who uses .NET, PHP, HTML5, JavaScript and jQuery technologies.

 

Published at DZone with permission of its author, Michael Georgiou.

(Note: Opinions expressed in this article and its replies are the opinions of their respective authors and not those of DZone, Inc.)