A Guide To Social Media Platforms
Getting your small business on social media
So, you’re a small business who has just set up a website. But you’re not sure what to do on the various social media platforms that are out there. Here’s a guide to some of the different social media platforms.
Remember you can’t be across them all, so pick a few that resonate with you to use for your small business.
People using Twitter for business and those who do it well, pass on lots of valuable information to others. They aren’t all about selling themselves or their products either.
Twitter is all about interaction. Showing your brand and your personality – which in turn builds loyalty. It’s succinct. It provides a wealth of information too. It’s fast-paced though it can be considered noisy.
It also offers you a huge reach to a wide audience – simply though, retweets, mentions and #hashtags, amongst other things. Its fast pace and the information provided is what I particularly love about it.
Instagram is a visual social media platform allowing you to share photos and videos. So your content’s primary focus is not words but an image.
As a business, you can share photos about your brand, your staff, your brand’s identity. The main focus on Instagram is the image – but you can supplement it by adding captions with hashtags too.
How can a business use Instagram? Well, a clothing brand on Instagram can share images of their products, their sales, but also images of their customers using their products.
Facebook allows different options to Twitter and Instagram. Facebook lets you add images, videos or just post comments. You aren’t limited by a set number of characters and can write a fair bit in a post.
Facebook is about building networks. You can like posts, comment on posts, run polls for your customers. You can interact and build relationships with Facebook too.
As a business on Facebook, it’s not as fast moving as other social media but not posting anything can have a negative effect too. Business pages in Facebook can be found via a search.
Facebook is a great networking tool for business. It also allows you to interact with your customers too – providing customer service, tips and tricks, ads and a lot more. You can generate polls and ask for customer feedback to help drive leads for your business. You can also join private communities to gain a wealth of knowledge and network.
LinkedIn has grown from a professional network showcasing a user’s professional resume, to company pages that you belong to and other communities that you can follow too. While Twitter is an open social media platform, LinkedIn requires permissions to follow people and companies. People can find you via a search, and view a public profile of you or request to follow you – then giving them access to your full profile, and the ability to engage with you.
You can post comments, links to blogs, highlight company news releases and the like. LinkedIn’s profile is based on your work history, your skills and people can verify your skill set. Jobs are also posted via company LinkedIn pages too.
As a networking tool, LinkedIn allows you to grow your network as it suggests people to connect to based on who you are currently both connected to.
Google+ offers communities to engage with, Google Hangouts, Google Circles, Google Reviews and also allows you to use hashtags to reach a wider audience.
As a small business, it offers you the ability to use Google Hangouts to connect with your customers with conversations and even video calls. Letting you interact in a more dynamic way. There’s also Google reviews which potential customers may come across for your business – a bit like testimonials
Circles in Google+ allow you to segment and deliver your content to different audiences. So you are more directly marketing specific content to your customers or network.
Tumblr is known as a micro-blogging platform. You set up a blog page which lets you post a variety of content. You can add audio, video, quote or link to other sites. You can set up your Tumblr blog with the same styling as your main blog that’s hosted elsewhere and seamlessly integrate between the two.
When you paste a blog with a link to your website through the Tumblr mobile app, it opens the website straight on Tumblr and doesn’t open up a web browser elsewhere. Tumblr has been noted as having a younger audience. You can link to your Facebook and Twitter accounts. You can also use hashtags, follow people, like blogs written by others, and interact through comments and direct messages.