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Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn…these words are nothing new, are they? We hear about them and use them day in, day out; whether it’s checking out our friends’ holiday snaps, checking in to the hottest new bar or checking up on a prospective new client, social media is exactly that: social.

In fact, if you were to cut your smart phone into neat little pieces (metaphorically, of course…please don’t send us your Apple bill!), the majority of slices would probably be social media-focused, with the humble phone call maybe making up a sliver in some people’s cases.

For businesses, however, it’s essential to be more strategic and, indeed, picky. A lot of clients will say to us: ‘Social media – can you just handle that for us?’ The answer, of course, is yes – if it’s right for them, that is. So many businesses make the mistake of thinking they need to be on every platform out there to ‘fit in’ and tick that box, with few of them stopping to think who will see the content and what return it’s likely to give them.

That’s not to say that being on multiple platforms is a no-go; rather, it’s important to have more than just Facebook to your social bow. Here are our tips on what to consider when thinking all things social and what’s important before you hit ‘create account’:

Who do we want to see our content?

It can be difficult to pinpoint exactly who your audience is, regardless of the product or service. As yourself the following about your target market: how old are they? Where do they live? What do they do and what do they earn? What are their ‘pain points’ that you can help solve? What social media platform do they use the most?

What do we have to say?

Decide why you want to be on that platform and what you want to tell your followers. Don’t worry though, this needn’t take hours and hours of brainstorming content – it’s much more effective and efficient to repurpose content across platforms, tweaking tone of voice and messaging as needed. Think about having the right balance of telling people about what you’re up to and industry-relevant news, asking their opinion and, of course, selling them your offering.

How will we measure results?

Discuss what you want to achieve from that platform and how you’ll monitor progress. Measuring likes, follows, shares and retweets is all well and good, but it’s important to think about how these are all helping your bottom line. For instance, goals could include raising public’s perception of your brand, driving traffic to your website or improving customer service through increased engagement.

Fancy shaking up your social? Let’s chat!