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Understanding the best social platform for your business

In the modern digital age, no company can afford to go without some sort of social media presence. Having an online presence is now a prerequisite to surviving and growing as a business because customers will almost inevitably look you up online before they decide to buy their goods or services from you. If you can’t be found on social media, many will simply go elsewhere for what they need.

Yet not all social media platforms are the same, so you need to think carefully about the sort of customers you wish to target and where they might be looking for you. Here we explore some of the largest social media platforms to help you decide where to focus your efforts when it comes to paid social media advertising.

Facebook

With over a billion users logging on each day, Facebook is the biggest social media platform out there. It also attracts people from all age demographics and backgrounds, so whatever the goods or services you sell, you are almost guaranteed to find your target customers here. Of all the social media platforms, Facebook has the most advanced advertising system which means you can direct your marketing to the right people, based on their age, interests, purchasing behaviour, gender or any other criteria. This means it's suited to all companies, with images and text playing an equal role.

Twitter

Twitter is a great platform for directly engaging new customers and interacting with those who are already following you. Thanks to the hashtag, you can search for consumers who are looking for specific things online and direct them towards your company website. For instance, if you sell bicycles then it would make sense to seek out people who ‘need a new #bicycle’, offering them a route to your site where they might make a purchase. It's great if you have a service to sell, but not so good if you're selling goods and need to rely on a more visual medium to display your wares.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is good if you sell business to business, as it’s often the first port of call for professionals looking to make connections. If that sounds like your company, then it’s a good idea to set up a LinkedIn page for your business and see it’s updated on a regular basis. This isn’t such a great platform if you’re targeting the general public, however, as it’s not the first site which pops into mind when customers want to research a product.

Instagram

With 500 million active users a day, Instagram is a good place to get your company seen and one advantage this platform has over Facebook and Twitter is that it’s almost entirely visual. As most of the learning we do is through a visual medium, Instagram helps you convey your brand in an easy to understand and much more direct way. Uploading images of your products in action can encourage more people to buy, but it’s worth remembering that Instagram is more popular with a younger demographic. The very visual nature of Instagram makes it a great choice if you have a product to sell rather than a service, enabling you to show off your goods.

Pinterest

As with Instagram, Pinterest is a visual social media platform and great if your company’s line of work falls within the creative industries. Some of the most searched for things include recipes, craft projects, how-to lifestyle articles, fashion and wedding inspiration, but the list could go on without end. It’s worth remembering that an estimated 81% of Pinterest users are women, so if the goods or services you sell are really aimed at a male market then this might not be the best platform for your business.

YouTube

It’s always best to show rather than tell, which is precisely what YouTube allows you to do. Plenty of potential customers will head online to find out more about a product before they choose to buy it, so offering a short video demonstration can help drum up some interest in the goods you sell. Videos should be kept short, engaging and informative if they are to have the desired effect – a two-minute clip is ample time to give them the highlights. People of all ages use YouTube, so it’s a good platform if you’re targeting a broad customer base.

If you’re still unsure which social media platform is right for you, it's probably worth investing in paid social media advertising from a professional company.

This article does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors or management of EconoTimes.

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