Which social media platform should I use for my business?

Which social media platform should I use for my business?

As a business owner, you already know that social media is a key element of digital marketing. It’s an affordable, efficient way to build brand awareness, reach customers and drive sales. But knowing this is very different to doing it effectively. Social media marketing done badly can lead to missed opportunities and wasted resources. 

Even choosing the right platform is no longer straightforward. The social media advertising landscape is always evolving. New apps can spring up and grow to 100 million users in under a year, and keeping up can be a challenge. 

The best platform for your business depends upon many things. This article will give you some clarity on how your audience, your product, your competitors, your goals and the type of content you want to publish all play a part. And the things we talk about here apply to both organic social media and paid ads. 

Read on to understand how to choose the best social media platform for your business.

Who is your target audience?

Not all platforms are created equal. Different groups gravitate more towards certain platforms. And understanding this distribution is key to knowing where your target audience is hanging out. 

Around 70% of Gen Z, the 18-24-year-olds, use TikTok and Instagram, while less than 40% use Facebook. 

The opposite is true of Gen X, the over-35s. Over 90% of those use Facebook, with less than half using TikTok and Instagram. 

The Millennials, those aged 25-34, are somewhere in the middle. Around 70% use both Facebook and Instagram, with about half using TikTok. Millennials also make up the largest proportion of LinkedIn users.

Knowing the demographics of each platform means you can choose platforms that contain the highest volume of your target audience. For example, if you run a chiropractic clinic, Facebook may be the best option. The older audience may be more likely to experience stiffness and pain, and therefore require your services. 

What sort of products/services do you sell?

Is your product or service aimed at businesses? LinkedIn is the largest professional network in the world, with over 38 million users in the UK alone. Most of these use LinkedIn for work-related purposes, so it makes sense for B2B companies to have a presence there. Many companies that provide Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), IT and tech support, and professional services such as accountancy, legal, coaching and consultancy promote themselves on LinkedIn. 

On the other hand, more personal, informal platforms are better suited to B2C businesses. People are more likely to use Facebook, Instagram and TikTok for personal reasons, including shopping. Therefore, businesses in retail, fashion, food and drink, travel and hospitality, and health and wellness will reach more customers on those platforms.

Another reason why those platforms are suited to B2C businesses is that they are geared towards visual content. If you’re advertising a dining experience, a fashion accessory or a luxury holiday, the best way to do so is with images and videos that showcase them. Visual platforms such as Instagram, TikTok and Pinterest are well equipped for this. 

Things like software or professional services may need more written content to promote their benefits, so LinkedIn and Facebook may be better options. 

What do you want your social media marketing to achieve?

The ultimate goal of marketing is to drive sales. However, there are different ways to achieve this through social media marketing. 

Want to interact with customers? Twitter and Facebook have robust messaging and comment features. You can quickly respond to customers and foster a sense of community.

Want to get your brand recognised and remembered? Instagram, TikTok and Pinterest have excellent image and video functions. You can create eye-catching visual narratives and show your personality. 

Want to promote your products and services to a wider audience? Facebook and Instagram have in-depth advertising options with targeting and tracking capabilities.

Want to become a thought leader? LinkedIn allows you to turn posts into articles and engage in meaningful discussions relevant to your industry. 

Of course, you probably want to do more than one of these things. So combining different channels and approaches often results in greater success. 

What’s the competition up to?

A good marketing strategy considers what’s going on in your marketplace. If you’re a business using social media marketing in Milton Keynes, you can use this to your advantage because you can easily see what your competitors are doing. This can inform your strategy and positioning.

Let’s say your competitors are using LinkedIn. This indicates that your target audience is here, and could be a good place to start. But on the other hand, you might find that your competitors are missing a trick by not using other platforms. You might decide to make your business stand out and capture a new audience by being the first one in your market to use TikTok or Instagram.

You can also look at the social media accounts of your competitors to see what they’re not doing well, so you can do it better. For example, you might notice that a competitor’s Facebook page gets lots of comments from customers, but they don’t respond. You could make an effort to engage with more customers on Facebook and show that you provide better customer service. 

What are your limitations?

Each platform has its own features and formats that can limit what you do. Understanding these will inform where you choose to be active. For example, Twitter has a 280-character limit for each post, so you won’t be able to post long, in-depth articles that show your expertise. Instagram doesn’t enable hyperlinks in post text, so it’s harder to direct people to specific web pages.

Also, you will have limitations based on the context of your business. Practicalities such as budget, time and personnel always play a part. When it comes to ad spend, Facebook tends to be more cost-effective, so Facebook ads for Milton Keynes businesses is a popular and effective option. 

Also, content creation with engaging videos and graphics requires skill and can be time-consuming. If you don’t have staff who can do this properly, you may need to restrict your social media marketing to text-friendly platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.

You may even find that you don’t have the time or expertise to do any social media marketing at all. In which case, outsourcing is a great option…

Our marketing agency can help

We hope this article has equipped you with the knowledge to choose the right platforms for your business social media. But as you can see, there’s plenty to consider when it comes to your social media strategy. Getting it wrong can waste valuable resources. If you don’t have people with the right skills and knowledge in your organisation, we can help.

Big Voice is a social media agency in Milton Keynes. We develop targeted social advertising campaigns and manage social media for Milton Keynes businesses, creating and publishing content that resonates with your target audience. It’s a reliable and affordable way to grow your audience and turn more of them into paying customers. 

If you’d like a quick chat about how social media can enhance your business, get in touch