A Business’ Guide to Social

In the world of social media, it can be difficult to determine which site is best for your business. Each of them offers unique opportunities and ways to engage with your customers. Here is a breakdown of social media sites for businesses.

Facebook: As the largest social network, Facebook reaches a staggering amount of people world wide,which means a larger audience for your to broadcast your brand to. However, due to recent algorithm changes the business’ page is less visible. Luckily though for business, Facebook is still the number one social network for social referrals. Therefore, businesses should not disregard Facebook yet. While what they can do organically as a company is more limited, the potential to generate social referrals is greater here than anywhere else. And since Facebook users are generally more trusting than users of other social media sites, there is room still to capture more customers through this site.

Twitter: Unlike Facebook, Twitter still allows brands to have direct and free access to their customers or possible customers. While the audience is slightly smaller than that on Facebook, Twitter creates an open forum for discussions with customers, as long as it is under 140 characters. In addition, for B2B companies, Twitter allows you to interact directly with the leaders of your industry who would otherwise just be a figurehead you see at conferences. Twitter puts people on the same playing field with equal opportunity to reach a community.

Google+: While Google+ is still the punch line to many jokes, it should definitely be taken seriously by anyone that wants to get noticed by Google. Since this social networking site is clearly run by Google, your Google+ business page will inevitably show up towards the top of Google search results. While right now it may seem like a waste of time, it is still important and should not be ignored.

LinkedIn: If you are a B2B business you should be on LinkedIn, and if you are not, change that immediately. LinkedIn is the best forum for businesses to show their brand and what they do. While the organic reach for businesses on LinkedIn is not the greatest, it is important that other businesses and industry leaders can locate you and see your legitimacy. Also, if there is money in the ad budget, you can sponsor some updates that can spread your reach to people that don’t already know about you.

Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, Vine and Youtube: I bundled these five together because of their common center around visual media. Each of these has many different uses that can help promote your business online but they all do so by promoting you with a different medium. First, by using visual media to explain what your company does, you can engage more people , because it is proven that people engage more with photos and other visual media than merely text. For instance, you can use a video on Youtube to explain what your business does or create a six second Vine that shows your product in action. Or, if your business sells something, such as flowers, you can use Intagram and/or Snapchat to show your creations in all their beauty. Pinterest also has the same ability to use photos that then interest people to come to your site. All of these sites also have the ability to make your brand seem more human. While on Facebook and Twitter you can respond to questions and post something comical, it can be difficult to come off as a real human being and not just a robot. By using visual social media, you can post images of your employees, your product and it gives you more leeway to be goofy and funny without seeming like you are trying too hard. Visual media allows you to put a face with the brand, something that customers love to see.

There is a basic guide to social media for businesses. What social media platform do you think is best for businesses?

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