A common question among PMEs is “should we be active on every social media platform?” As a small or medium business owner, you are likely already wearing many different hats every day and it can be overwhelming to think about maintaining a social media presence on every social media platform, especially if you don't have a social media manager. Luckily, we do NOT recommend small businesses be on every social media platform. Keep reading to learn why PMEs should only be active on a few social media platforms and how to choose the right platforms for the best business results!
Set Realistic Social Media Goals
As a business, you already have a lot of work to do and probably not enough time to do it all. When it comes to social media, it’s important to focus on quality and results over quantity. Instead of trying to do a little bit of everything, we recommend being active and posting great content on 1-3 social media channels. It’s more important and more helpful to your business if you optimize the time you spend on social media and focus on creating high-quality content for a few key channels. If you try to maintain an active presence on every single network, you will likely spread yourself thin trying to keep up with the many social media channels out there.
Help Your Small Business Pick the Right Social Media Platforms by asking these 5 questions:
1. What platforms is your customer base already using?
If your customers aren’t using social media platforms like Snapchat or TikTok, you definitely don’t need to have a presence on those channels. One of the first questions to answer to help you decide on the right social media platforms for your small business is to figure out which platforms your customers are already active on. You can try to analyze this on your own, you could even send out a survey to ask your customers about their favorite social media platforms, or you could hire a professional to do the audit/assessment. If your audience heavily prefers a certain social media platform, or dislikes another, you’ll know which platforms you should be active on and which platforms to stay away from.
2. Which platforms are you comfortable with?
After finding out which platforms your customers are already using, you will also need to think about the platforms you are most comfortable with as well. In order to be successful on social media, you will need to have a solid understanding of how that platform works and what content performs well. Hopefully, the platforms your customers are using are ones that you are already familiar with as well. And if not, you’ll want to start testing out their favorite platforms to get more comfortable with them.
3. What type of content do you create?
In order to be successful on any social media platform, you will need to post content that performs well on that specific platform. It’s important to understand that each social media platform will have certain types of content that perform better than others. For example, in order to be successful on Instagram and Pinterest, you will need to post high-quality photos. However, if you tend to create more editorial content like whitepapers or infographics, LinkedIn would be a better platform for your small business. Highly visual, fast-paced or tutorial video content will thrive on TikTok or Youtube. Set up a Content Strategy!
4. Who are you trying to reach?
It’s also important to think about who your ideal customer is and who your target demographics are when considering which social media platforms to be active on. For example, if you are trying to reach older adults, Facebook might be the best platform – with 51% of people aged 50-65 and 34% of people who are 65+ years old are active on the platform. Whereas Instagram is the better platform to reach young adults with 67% of people aged 18-29 are active on the platform. Besides age, you will want to consider additional demographics, like gender. For example, did you know Pinterest’s audience is 70% female?
5. Which sites will help you get the most traffic?
With so many social media platforms out there, it might seem like the best way to get the most traffic is to be on every platform. But the platforms with the most monthly active users are Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok and Pinterest. Facebook has 2.5 billion monthly active users (across all 4 platforms) and this number is growing everyday. Consumers are already accustomed to looking for a business on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram with 73% of US teens saying the best way for brands to reach them about new products or promotions is through Instagram.
As a small business, you are already wearing multiple hats and it’s simply not feasible (or smart!) to have a presence on every social media platform. In order for social media to become a valuable marketing tool for your small business, you need to be posting quality content on the platforms that your customers are active on. Social media can be a powerful way to help your small business connect with new customers, grow brand awareness, generate web traffic and make more sales – if you do it properly.
Instead of trying to do a little bit of everything, it’s a better idea for small and medium businesses to select a few key social media platforms, such as Instagram and LinkedIn. Then, focus on creating high quality content and actively engaging with your customers on a few social media platforms for the best ROI for your business.