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SHOULD MY BUSINESS BE ON MULTIPLE SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS?

One of the most commonly asked questions I hear from small business owners is whether or not they need to have a presence on multiple social media platforms.

I doubt anyone would argue the importance social media plays in your marketing strategy, however you don’t want to waste time on irrelevant social media sites and get no return on investment. There are many different social media sites and a vast array of ways to engage with each audience.

Whilst it’s impossible for a business to maintain an active profile on EVERY social media interface out there, that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible for you to maintain an active profile on multiple social media sites. In fact, having a multi-pronged social media approach is essential if you really want to gain some traction for your brand, if only because your target audience is probably split over several social media sites as well.

In the modern age, Facebook is almost as important as a website, it gives customers a place to contact you, learn about your business and keep up to date with your latest news. However, social media is more than just Facebook, not all of the people you are trying to reach are on Facebook, nor are they on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram or any of the other social media platforms out there. Instead, your target audience is scattered between these (and other) platforms. Therefore, if you want to reach as much of your target market as possible, you’re going to need to use multiple social media platforms.

You need to determine which social media networks will be best for reaching your target audience. Once you’ve established that, you need to determine what your messages and content will be, how frequently you’re going to post, how you’re going to manage them across multiple platforms and how they will integrate with your overall marketing strategy to ensure you get the most out of your efforts.

The most important question to ask yourself is what social media sites do the majority of your audience spend their time on (the people who you want to engage with your business and brand). Platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are great (given their size) and you should consider a profile with all, regardless of what your business does or the products or services you sell. Then you need to establish which smaller, more niche-based platforms are going to be populated with the type of audience you are trying to reach.

Think about the uses of different social media networks and try to match them with your business’s mission. Is your prime goal to sell a sleek new piece of technology to young adults? Head to Instagram, where you can really show off the aesthetic value of your products. Or are you a business that sells highly technical software to corporations and other high-profile businesses? Your main outlet will be LinkedIn, the social network geared toward more professional interactions.

So yes, I think businesses should be active on multiple social media sites, however keep in mind that the goal is quality, not quantity. You can have four extremely well-targeted social media profiles and have them do a lot more work for you than a business with 20 random accounts. The main idea is to think about your customers and what they would respond to best.

Is your business active on multiple social media networks? If so, how many, and which ones? What kinds of different responses or customer interactions do you get with your different platforms? We would love to hear your experiences.

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