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A Quick Guide to Social Media Marketing

Facebook, Pinterest, Snapchat … this list goes on and on and more than likely you’re on at least one social media platform (here’s looking at you Facebook) whether socially, professionally or both. In fact, 4% of adults are on a total of five social sites! But when it comes to using social media for your business how do you know which platform is right for you?

First and foremost ask yourself, “Who is my target customer?” Before you say answer that question, let us tell you: the answer is not everyone! Marketing effectively to every demographic is impossible and it’s highly unlikely that every customer provides you the same return on investment (ROI). That’s not to say you shouldn’t provide great customer service to everyone and everyone’s money doesn’t count—it just means you need to decide which customers are worth your marketing dollars.

Once you’ve got your target audience, you need to develop a presence on the social media they are most likely to use. Here is a breakdown of each platform to help you:

Facebook
Got a product or a service used by the general public? If so, this platform is a must. Yes, we know you’ve heard Millenials are shifting to other platforms and that’s true, but there’s still over 1 billion monthly worldwide users on Facebook. So while Facebook may not be your primary platform, your business will still benefit from a well-maintained presence.
Quick Facts: Posts with photos generate 120% more engagement and keeping it short (less than 250 characters) will get you 60% more engagement.

Twitter
A love-hate relationship with Twitter is pretty common—it’s the most confusing platform, because it’s the 2nd most recognized platform but is actually 4th when it comes to usage. Those who use it tend to check it more frequently than other platforms but only 60% of users actively post so creating engagement can be tough.
Quick Facts: Research has found an 89% increase in favorites of tweets with images over those without and a 150% increase in retweets if there’s a photo.

Instagram
If Instagram were in high school, it would definitely be voted prettiest with all its photos and fancy filters which makes it perfect for those in the retail sector. Boutiques and other product-driven small businesses have been able to find customers, develop markets and sell products through Instagram keeping marketing costs low. With its growing success, Instagram is projected to generate $5.8 billion in the year 2020.
Quick Facts: 57% of users use the site daily and 43% of mobile owners age 18-29 are on the site. 35% of users check it multiple times a day.

Pinterest
The 3rd most popular social media platform is Pinterest. It has the 2nd highest percentage of users in the $50,000+ income bracket (behind only LinkedIn). Not only is this platform great for keeping you occupied when you’re waiting in the doctor’s office, it is also where 70% of users go for inspiration of what to buy. Being active on Pinterest can help position your business as the thought leader in your industry, the one who gives the consumer the idea that they must have a product or try a service.
Quick Facts: Pinning consistently (up to 5x per day) is important as are keyword rich descriptions and boards so it is easy for people to find your products.

LinkedIn
LinkedIn is great for the professional audience and is killer for finding qualified prospects for jobs. 38% of users have an income of $75,000+ and the typical user is a Caucasian male college graduate, aged 30-49.
Quick Facts: It’s not checked as frequently and only about 13% of adults use it daily.

Snapchat
Snapchat is the cool new social media that just moved to town, and no one’s quite figured him out yet. Since its inception, more than 400 million Snapchats are sent per day, averaging out to about 9,000 snaps per second. Think of using Snapchat to provide access to live events such as product launches, trade shows or one-of-a-kind events. You can also use Snapchat as your own private VIP club to give followers a look behind the scenes or special promotions.
Quick Facts: Snapchat content has to be authentic. You will need someone dedicated to creating stories and capturing moments as they happen as opposed to being able to schedule content as you can with other platforms.

Social media truly has changed the way we market and will continue to do so. The key to using social media right is to determine where your audience is, and develop meaningful, relevant content for that platform. Ultimately you’re creating a dialogue with your customers, not just pushing products or services at them.