How to Decide Which Social Media Platforms Your Business Should Use + Free Checklist

Social media gives a small business the opportunity to get noticed like nothing else before it in the world of advertising. Social media networks like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram offer multiple ways to promote your business. Free options abound, like posting status updates and photos for your followers to see, and if you’ve made them really compelling, share with their followers. Social media platforms also represent one of the most effective places to spend your advertising budget, thanks to their sophisticated targeting algorithms. I always recommend making social media marketing a pillar of any small business’ plans for attracting new clients.

I know that optimizing use of various social media platforms for your business can be daunting. So, in addition to the tips below, I’ve created a helpful checklist for making sure you’re using any given platform to your best advantage. You can download it for free at the bottom of this article!

Consider each of the following points when deciding whether a given social media platform is a good match for your business:

  • What percentage of my ideal client/customer base uses this platform?
    Think about what they use it for, and how you can most effectively interact with them using it.
  • What types of content will I be sharing?
    Think about what your business will use the platform for. Does the content you’ll be sharing line up with what your ideal clients or customers use it for?
  • How will I effectively use my business’ brand on this platform?
    You should already have a strong sense of branding. Now you need to make it consistent across platforms for instant recognition. Make sure your business differentiates itself, even within the strict confines of a social media page.
  • How frequently will you check in on your social media account?
    Having an active page is vital to using social media as an effective tool to promote your business. I always recommend creating a social media marketing calendar to plan your content and campaigns. You should also consider how often you will need to interact with followers and other pages to make strong connections.
  • Can you use the platform to research your ideal clients and determine what they’re looking for?
    Ideally you want a platform with good tools for searching, viewing trends, and getting analytics about interactions with your business’ page. These additional benefits can tell you a lot about your potential clients or customers!

Keep in mind that not all social media platforms are created equal, and they won’t all work as effectively for every business, because of differences in the user base. If you only have a limited amount of time to spend on social media, I suggest putting it into the platforms that will give you the best return, in the form of new (and repeat) clients. Using social media management software like Hootsuite can help you do more with the time you have available, but ultimately you have to decide which platforms to use, and which to ignore.

If you’re ready to start getting the most out of whichever social media platforms you decide to use, download my free checklist below:

Of course, if you’re really strapped for time, a virtual assistant can take over managing your social media channels. Having someone else dedicating the hours necessary to make social media work for your business can help you gain more followers, and in turn, more clients. A good virtual assistant will also be a master of using the advertising features on Facebook and other platforms, putting you a step ahead of your competitors! Feel free to schedule a quick consultation with me, so we can discuss your social media marketing strategies!

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