The Digital Age has presented businesses with an ever-growing number of online marketing opportunities in the form of social media platforms.
These days, there is a social media channel designed for just about everyone. Although social sites initially started out as a way to connect people with family and friends, social media channels have also made it possible to network more efficiently and get your business in front of a larger audience.
Read on to discover the five key steps to selecting the best social media channels for your business and overall digital marketing efforts.
Crafting Your Social Media Channel Strategy
1. The first step to creating a solid social media channel strategy is to determine where your target audience spends the most time online. This boils down to understanding who your target audience is. You can figure this out by creating a buyer persona of your ideal customer. Ask the following questions:
- How old are they?
- Where do they live?
- What is their profession?
- What’s their average income?
These simple questions can go a long way in determining where you will find this audience online. For example, younger consumers tend to use Snapchat and Instagram. On the other hand, people in the business workforce may lean more towards using LinkedIn.
Gather as much detailed information about your target audience as possible to pinpoint which social media accounts you should be focusing on.
2. Determine which social media platforms align with your brand. Just because the platform is available doesn’t mean that you should create a business account on all of them. The best business social media accounts are effective in spreading brand awareness because they are compatible with your company’s values.
If you are running a B2B company, you will find that social media marketing efforts on LinkedIn and Twitter will be more beneficial to you than Snapchat. On the other hand, certain B2C companies (for example, in retail, wellness and food) might find the largest population of their target audience gathering on Instagram or Pinterest. This depends on the market segment you are in.
To make it easier to find the best business social media accounts for your brand, ask yourself the following questions:
- Is my company B2B or B2C?
- Are my products or services best conveyed through visuals?
- If so, can my brand produce enough visual content on a regular basis?
- Are there any alternative or new social media platforms that are less saturated?
3. To further narrow down your options, take the time to check out where your competitors are. If they seem to be generating a good amount of social media traffic, you can study their techniques and incorporate some of their content marketing methods into your own strategy.
Keeping close tabs on your competitors’ social media accounts can give you a leg up and even prevent costly digital marketing mistakes down the road. When you start looking at your competitors to determine the best business social media accounts for your brand, ask the following questions:
- What platforms are they using?
- Which accounts seem to be generating the highest level of engagement?
- What type of content is driving up their engagement?
- How often are they posting?
- Who is following them?
4. Next, you will need to figure out what type of content will resonate best with your target audience. For example, if you run a cosmetics company or apparel brand, visual elements will obviously be vital to your social media channel strategy. Images and videos will go a long way in showcasing your products. Therefore, you may find that Instagram and Pinterest are two of the optimal social media accounts for your business.
Keep in mind that you should crosspost between multiple social media channels by using scheduling tools.
5. The last step before deciding on the best social media accounts for your brand is to set specific business goals. What exactly do you hope to accomplish by creating social media accounts for your business? If your answer is “to make money,” then you need to head back to the drawing board.
Every business owner wants to make money. In order to set achievable business goals for your social media channel strategy, you should ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I want to boost traffic to my website?
- Should I focus on building an online community?
- Do I want to generate new leads?
- Is customer service a priority?
The answers to these questions will help you set goals and get on the right path to reach them.
The Best Business Social Media Accounts for Your Brand
Once you have finished the these first steps in creating a social media channel strategy, it’s time to pick your platforms. The top social media channels for businesses include Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube and SnapChat. Let’s take a closer look at the three most popular ones.
- Facebook ― Arguably the most recognizable social media platform on the list, Facebook can be a goldmine for businesses. With over 1.5 billion users, Facebook offers access to the largest online community in the world. As of April 2019, a Statista report found that 10% of global active Facebook users were women between 18 and 24 years with the largest demographic group being male users between 25 and 34 years.
You can post text, images and videos to the platform. There is even a scheduler that has already been integrated for your convenience.
- Instagram ― With over 1 billion active accounts and a user-friendly interface, Instagram is another popular social media platform that you could be leveraging for your business. The majority of users are 52% women and 42% men.
You can enlist the help of Instagram influencers to boost brand awareness. This is the digital version of word-of-mouth. You can also create your own unique hashtags (or use popular ones that are already available) to cultivate a tight-knit community on the platform.
The main criticism with Instagram comes with the event algorithm changes. These changes have caused a drastic decrease in organic reach which has resulted in lower engagement levels.
- LinkedIn ― If you are operating a B2B company, there is no question that you should be using LinkedIn as your main social media account.
From a 2019 survey on digital tactics, 72% of respondents say that by 2025, the majority of their company’s revenue will come from B2B ecommerce websites that they own and operate. This means that B2Bs are already planning to open up direct, online selling paths to uncover new revenue sources.
So, use this channel to target executives and other decision-makers as part of your social media channel strategy. LinkedIn will enable you to market your brand to a vast network of professionals, though marketing on this channel can get very expensive.
Wrapping Up the Best Business Social Media Accounts
Although there are multiple platforms that you can incorporate into your social media channel strategy, choosing the best social media channels for your business is key to optimizing your brand’s digital marketing strategy. Use the above steps to decide on the best business social media accounts to leverage for your business and get set up for success in 2020!
By leveraging social media marketing combined with marketing automation, your social media channel strategy can pack a powerful punch and boost the bottom line. One of the many benefits of SharpSpring Social is being able to post to your social media channels with only one easy-to-use platform. For example, you can create and schedule posts to LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter as well as see how users are interacting with your brand through its social listening feature.
Your social media channel strategy is a vital part of your business’s digital marketing strategy, but to ensure that your social efforts are effective, you have to continually look for ways to stand out from the crowd.
For more information on selecting the best social media channels for your business, check out SharpSpring’s social media management to see what we can do for you.