The ROI of social media is your business will still exist in 5 years.” – Erik Qualman
A statement that rings truer today in 2017 than it ever has before. But, the answer is not simply to have a presence online, it is to have the right presence on the right social media platforms that best suits you and your brand values. Understanding and discovering every facet possible surrounding who your target audience is, is paramount for you and your business to succeed online. What are their likes, dislikes, demographics, age, gender, socio-economic status, do they prefer cream or milk in their morning coffee – You name it! In having this understanding you can then determine which social media platform they tend to use and more importantly HOW do they use them.
Yes you read that right, how they use them – Either for personal social sharing, for discovering businesses to engage and possibly do business with or both.
A prime example of this, is the general assumption that Millennials have abandoned platforms like Facebook, and only use ones like Snapchat or Instagram. Well, this is only partially correct. It is true that Millennials have flocked to Snapchat, the very creative, in the now social media platform that allows for real time communication mixed with fun and interactive filters for both picture and video. Talking with their friends and colleagues on a personal level has never been more creative and enjoyable. So yes, it is true that Millennials have abandoned Facebook for personal social sharing but, when it comes to checking out businesses or products they are interested in purchasing or doing business with, they definitely still use Facebook. In fact, it has been reported that over 41% of Millennials still use Facebook daily.
A demographic who has grown up in a technological age, they have become quite accustomed to using social media to determine if a business they are interested in, is worth their time and or money. How long does it take for a business to answer an inquiry left on their page? Do they respond to comments? When was the last time they posted? Does what they post provide value or does it constantly sell or broadcast; what we at a Cue Creative Consulting like to call it. All of these elements play a part in determining if a prospective individual will want to do business with you.
In essence, your social media platform is generally the very first customer service experience prospective clients will have with you. What If we were to flip the script and concentrate on ROR – Return on Relationship rather than ROI – Return on Investment? Can you just imagine how much better of a first, second or one hundredth impression you will be making with your target audience? It really is a no brainer – Build those relationships online and the sales will come, guaranteed. It might not happen instantly but it will happen I promise.
But, how do I choose which social media platform to build those relationships on?
To help you make this decision I will break down the basics of each platform.
Here we go.
Facebook really is a must have for any and all businesses online. It still is the powerhouse when it comes to online social media marketing. Now with the advent of Facebook LIVE video streaming, the doors have been swung wide open for businesses to uniquely market and connect with their audiences online and build those all so important relationships. Let customers get to know the people behind the logo, and in turn, they will become your biggest cheerleaders online.
Is a platform centered around the art of the conversation. Unlike Facebook, Twitter really is centered around the landscape of being ‘in the moment’. It really is perfect for those businesses who have things to say frequently and want to engage directly. Ideal for breaking news or current events.
Is a perfect platform to reach the younger generation online through the art of visuals. It shows no sign of slowing down while it continues to gain traction with the 30 to 45 yr old demographic. The recent addition of Instagram Stories helps take the customer/user experience behind the scenes of you and your business allowing them to get to know, like, and trust you and your brand in a much deeper way than ever before.
YouTube is the second largest search engine and the third most visited website world wide just behind Google and Facebook. This makes it a perfect tool for marketing through google search engines. Simple how to videos, behind the scenes clips, product demos etc are all perfect examples of how to utilize this platform. It really is suitable for most businesses, especially those that are in creative or visual fields.
Typically it has been reported that the majority of its users are under the age of 40 and are typically female. They generally have an income over $100 k per year. It really is an important tool to keep you in the know of what the current or upcoming trends are. Pinterest tends to influence customer purchases, especially with the addition of buyable pins directly within the platform.
I hope this breakdown gives you some basic insight of what each platform has to offer and how you can utilize them for you business. Ideally, no business can or should be on all platforms. I suggest that you pick the top 3 that would best suit your needs and devote the time, energy and commitment needed to really make social media work for you and your business.
Bonus Tip: If you find even if after reading this blog you are still not sure how to figure out which platform is best suited for you and your business – Check out what your competitors are doing online.
What platforms are they using? What kind or reaction or engagement are they getting, ie. likes, shares and or comments they are getting on their posts? And more importantly, what are they doing right to build those relationships online and what are they doing wrong? Identify where they are falling short and you have found a niche that you can fill.
If you have any questions about social media or how to determine which platform would best suit you and your business. I invite you to give me a shout, and I would be more than happy to support you in your digital marketing needs!
Dina Arsenault Digital Media Strategist and the undisputed reigning Madame of creativity, community and connection for the Ontario Chapter of http://acueconsulting.com/.
A celebrated and sought after speaker and writer, Dina is a caffeine fueled and food delighted ( locally sourced of course) Community Builder, Relationship Nurturer and all around Small Business Supporter. Dina’s online expertise is driven by her desire to promote your business online while connecting and elevating others in the process to foster community and the all around ‘good feels’. If you want to be visible, connected and engaged with your community (and exposed to great food and fun) Dina is your gal!