Social Media

Communicating Where it Counts: Choosing the Right Social Platforms for Your Audience

By Megan Visanska-Hartwick | On May 27, 2014

It’s common knowledge that in order to succeed in today’s business environment, a social media presence is a must. Once upon a time, this just meant having a company Facebook page and Twitter profile. But now, with an ever-expanding array of social platforms, how do you identify which ones will benefit your business objectives?

Though it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the number of choices, it’s important to remember that when it comes to social, sometimes less is more. When you’re beginning a social campaign, choose 1-2 platforms and focus on building a presence there. Once you’ve obtained a solid following on those initial platforms, you can then move on to launching additional social channels.

With this in mind, here are three tips for determining which social platforms are best for your business:

1. Understand your brand.

Knowing the type of content your business can offer is key when selecting social media platforms. Do your company’s products lend themselves to exciting visuals? Maybe Instagram is the best option for you. Host a lot of events? Twitter is a great platform to post live updates. If you have a significant number of videos highlighting services and offerings, you may want to consider YouTube. Make sure to evaluate all of your organization’s collateral in order to choose the right platform to display your brand’s products and expertise.   

2. Know your audience.

Understanding how your target audiences use social media is important when determining which channels will help you meet your business objectives. For example, before deciding that you must create a corporate Snapchat account, be sure to do some research to see who’s using it. Though some consumer brands, such as the NBA and Acura, are active on the platform, it may not the right choice for every business, especially B2B brands. If your audience isn’t using a given platform; there probably isn’t a reason for your company to be there.

Similarly, it’s also important to consider how your target audiences use each channel. If they use LinkedIn solely for job searches, it might not be the right platform to try and engage them in conversations about industry trends. Bottom line, you want to share your message where your audience is most likely to receive and respond to it.

3. Speak the language.

Each social media channel has its own tone and style. Choosing the platforms that best align with your company’s tone can help ensure success. If you’re posting professional content using a more conservative voice, LinkedIn is your best option. Twitter works best for short and sweet posts with a conversational, engaging voice. Regardless of the social media channel you choose, speaking the platform’s language will help your brand convey its message and promote meaningful engagement.

When deciding to take the first step into the world of social, don’t let the abundance of choices overwhelm you. Evaluate what your brand has to offer, assess your audience, and understand the language of the platforms you choose. These three tips will help your brand become a well-versed player in the social media landscape.

Megan Visanska-Hartwick

Megan is an Account Executive at Affect, where she focuses on combining traditional practices and new media initiatives to provide successful public relations for her clients. Megan is currently working on a variety of accounts at Affect that utilize her skills in PR, social media and marketing including Con Edison, Caron Treatment Centers and IDT911. Before joining the team at Affect, Megan held internships in a variety of fields, and worked on social media campaigns for authors at Sterling Publishing as well as a student-run campaign for a non-profit called SparkBoom.