Social media has given brands the power to connect with their consumer and meaningful, two-way dialogue. It can help brands build a soul and reach a wide base of consumers on a deep level.

As with the rest of the digital media world, social also gives brands the ability to collect and analyze data about their consumers like no other form of media can. Brands now have valuable insights that can alter the direction of their company and better position them for growth.

Organizations are slow to adopt social media because of their fear for the unknown. Constantly learning about and building a new platform while maintaining existing accounts can be a daunting task. However, social media does not need to be an “all or nothing” approach.

Before creating a social media account for your business and committing to it, there are a few questions to ask about your brand:

  • What is our target audience we want to reach?
  • Does our target audience use this platform?
  • What type of content do users of this platform consume?

Finding the right social media platforms can save you from wasting your valuable energy and resources on a channel that does not reach your audience. When you’re choosing social media platforms for your business it’s key to keep in mind what the benefits are for each channel.

Below is a quick summary to help you understand each platform and its strengths:

  • Facebook
    • Creates great opportunities for dialogue and interaction between the brand and consumer
    • Provides great targeting demographics to make sure the right people are getting your message.
    • Effective for sharing all types of media (articles, graphics, photos, videos)
  • Twitter
    • Limited to 140 characters in most cases. Great for creating quick content in mass.
    • Amazing for real-time discussion of a trending topic. No other platform offers that in-the-moment opportunity.
    • Messaging allows for quick interaction and customer service functionality.
  • Instagram
    • Great for showcasing visual content such as photos, infographics, or short videos.
    • Simple to use. Snap a photo and post.
    • Utilizes Facebook’s demographic data for targeted advertising.
  • LinkedIn
    • Great to connect with a professional-based audience
    • Share valuable B2B content in a blog-style format.
    • Offers a small range of targeting options to reach individuals with certain positions, industries or companies.
  • Snapchat
    • Skews towards a younger audience
    • Video content is quick and easy to produce and share.
    • Offers built in filters to advertise for a location or event.
    • Requires little, or no written content.

The key to effective social media is to marry great content with where your consumer’s attention is focused. We are overwhelmed by content on a daily basis, and the only way to break through the clutter is to deliver the right content in the perfect context.