Which social platforms should I use?

A client recently asked us this question. The advice we gave them is relevant to many businesses looking to bring social media into their marketing strategy.

How do I gain followers / customers?

You're probably using social media wrong for you business. Most businesses are. It's common for businesses to treat social media as an afterthought, rather than treating it as the major marketing platform that they should be. 

If you're putting up the odd post on your company Facebook page, you are probably aware that your following isn't going up and you will only be getting a handful of likes on each post. That's because Facebook only shows your post to a small fraction of your followers. Unless you are putting several posts on your Facebook timeline per day, you won't see much value in using the platform for business. Facebook will rank you higher if you are very active but adding the odd post every couple of days is only useful if people actively seek your page out.

There are two routes to effectively gaining customers on social media:

  1. The free route
    Be VERY active by adding several posts per day and commenting on other people’s posts. This is a good long term plan for gaining new clients but takes 2-3 hours every day to do it well.
     
  2. The advertising route
    This is the route most businesses choose but obviously costs money to do it.

Which social platforms should I spend most time / money on?

There are many platforms available but at the writing of this article we would recommend:

  1. Creating an Instagram account and use this as your main social platform. For most businesses, this is the way to go. At the time of writing this article, Instagram is where the world's attention is at and if you invest time into the platform it will pay dividends. Similar to Facebook though, if you only add the odd post and treat each one as an advert, you won't get much engagement. We would recommend adding 3-4 posts per day, spend time answering ALL comments on your posts, as well as engaging with and commenting on other people’s posts in your sector.  
     
  2. Combine this with paid advertising on Facebook/Instagram. Given the potential reach and targeting power, the cost of advertising on Facebook is seriously underpriced. In 5 years' time, the cost will likely be substantially more and we will all be regreting not spending more today. You can start off at $5 per day to test it and scale up from there but to do it effectively can be a steep learning curve. Again there are two options with this, learn how to do it on places like https://www.facebook.com/blueprint/courses/category/advertising-on-facebook and various YouTube channels or pay someone to set it up and maintain it for you
  3. We would also recommend regularly adding videos to YouTube but spend time presenting these professionally. They should be well edited and engaging to watch, they should have an intro, music and be either entertaining or informative (remember, no one likes watching adverts). There are some good apps available to edit your videos, or again you can pay someone to do this for you.
     
  4. Twitter can be used as your customer service channel, where individuals can ask you questions. At the time of writing this article, we wouldn’t recommend advertising here for most businesses though.

Social media can send your conversions through the roof if used effectively but it needs to be treated as a major part of your business. Speak to us if you have specific questions on how it can be used for your business.