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Success with Social: 4 Tips for Choosing Channels Wisely

Posted on the 21 July 2016 by Marketingtango @marketingtango
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  • July 21, 2016
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Success with Social: 4 Tips for Choosing Channels Wisely

Potential for growth, engagement, elevating brand awareness and appearing more tech-savvy have inspired countless small businesses to seriously consider social media marketing. Currently in the US, nearly 60 percent of SMBs have some level of social presence, with more than 75 percent planning some form of social engagement starting next year.

Sophisticated analytics and affordable advertising options have made social media marketing downright irresistible for many integrated marketers, effectively drawing them into the fray, with a strategy in one hand and their vision the other.

Quality Not Quantity

To achieve any measure of success, however, it’s imperative that your social strategy include a defensible, intelligently vetted list of social media channels, something that may be easier said than done, even for highly motivated small-business marketers.

“An effective social media marketing strategy goes beyond simply making profiles on as many platforms as possible,” cautions marketing analyst, Sarah Patrick. Writing for the business blog, Patrick adds that “Selecting social media channels that are a good fit [for your company and its resources] and can meet your business goals, is a crucial part of the planning process.” The analyst goes on to offer these tips and others for getting the right channel plan in place:

Tip #1: Know Your Audience. Dig in to this before jumping in with posts and tweets. Who are they? What are their demographics? How do they typically consume social media content? Will they respond better to highly visual elements, such as photos, videos, ads or infographics? Content is all about relevance so this step is essential.

Tip #2: Know Your Goals. Are you trying to reach current customers or attract new ones? Messaging and formats will differ. What actions are you trying to stimulate? Are the right metrics in place to help you gauge each channel’s response rates?

Tip #3: Know Your Options. It may be stating the obvious but considerations for choosing social channels differ greatly between B2C (business-to-consumer) companies and those who strictly sell to other businesses (B2B). Facebook, for example, is more often (though not exclusively) used by B2C companies, while B2B companies may prefer LinkedIn. Other popular platforms include: Google-Plus; Pinterest; Instagram; and Snapchat.

Tip #4: Know Your Limitations: There are definitely returns to be realized from social media marketing. But if you try to maintain a presence on too many platforms, your efforts will be weak and watered down, possibly hurting your brand more than helping it. Most experts recommend focusing on the one or two most appropriate channels and developing a strong voice and content there. Others can come later, as more time and resources become available.

Visit our Social Media Marketing Archive for other useful and timely tips, including Five Focus Areas for Sharpening Your Social Media Marketing.

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