Marketing on Social Media Made Simple: The Art of Understanding the “Why”

Updated: Mar 11, 2019

Many of us may know that you need to be on social media. But do we know why? In our personal lives, we use social media for connection. The social media landscape even makes long distances not seem quite so distant. Never, in human history, has it been as simple to reach out to friends and loved ones. But why should YOUR business be on social media? More specifically, what social media should your business using? Once you understand the “why” behind each social media platform, you will be more equipped to answer this crucial question. Ready? Here we go:

Facebook: Something for Everyone

Facebook has become a behemoth in the social media sphere. This news probably is

not shocking to you. As of the first quarter of this year, Facebook reported that they have 1.94 billion monthly users. Of these monthly users, 1.28 billion log in on a daily basis. When you take an even deeper look the numbers are even more staggering. Every 60 seconds: 510,000 comments are posted, 293,000 statuses are updated, and 136,000 photos are uploaded to this social media giant. 68 percent of adults in the U.S. are on Facebook. To put it plainly, if you have a business, you need to be on Facebook.

Users are on Facebook for one main reason: nostalgia. This is the platform to keep up with friends and loved ones. For instance, when your potential customers want to keep

up with childhood friends that they have lost touch with, this is where they go. These same people are logging in to keep track of their family who may live across the country. Consider this comment from a Facebook user named Linda: “I continue to use Facebook for a couple of reasons, the main one being that Facebook allows me a place to interact with friends and family in a single arena. It allows me to interact and “participate” in their lives even though I am physically unable to be with them, wherever they may be.” Bottom line: if your business can tap into this nostalgia, Facebook can assist you in developing a wide audience.

Instagram: Bold and Beautiful

Where Facebook has a wide generational appeal, Instagram is a thriving social platform

for millennials. In fact, approximately 55 percent of 18 to 29 year-olds are Instagram users. Even though Instagram is only 7 years old, it is the fastest growing major social network. The platform boasts 4.2 billion likes in a given day, as well as 95 million photo/video shares a day. In terms of education, Instagram tends to be a platform that the more educated gravitate towards. 32 percent of users have attended (or are currently attending) college.

So why are millennials so keen on Instagram? The answer is simple: it is a celebration of the beauty of life. The internet, as a whole, can be a pretty negative place. However, Instagram is noted for being a place of immense positivity. One major pastime on this social media stage is to share inspirational memes. A meme is “an interesting item, such as a captioned picture or video, that is spread widely online especially through social media”. Your business can start to quickly take advantage of this platform by sharing inspirational quotes of your own. Are you a fan of beautiful landscapes? Start sharing those photos for your followers to see! As you revel in the beauty all around you and share those nuggets of wisdom, you will see your followers on Instagram continue to grow.

YouTube: Google Smiles on Google

What comes to mind when you read this phrase: “Charlie bit my finger”? That’s right; our minds are transported back to one of the first videos to ever go viral. Two adorable British tots had a moment of sibling tension which was shared over 843 million times!

Since the release of that video in 2007, YouTube has gone from a mere novelty video service to a powerhouse which rivals cable television. Currently, users spend an estimated average of at least one hour per day watching on their mobile devices alone. And it’s not just millennials who are devouring YouTube content. GenX and Baby Boomers are actually the two fastest growing demographics for the video service at this moment. When it is all said and done, YouTube reports that over 1 billion hours of content is watched every single day.

What does this mean for your business specifically? To answer this question, we must go

back to 2006. In November of 2006, Google made an acquisition that would forever change the SEO game. SEO (or Search Engine Optimization) is a method used to increase the amount of traffic on a given website by ranking higher in a search results page of a given search engine. When Google bought YouTube, a flood of SEO possibilities opened up to the world. When we say that “Google Smiles on Google”, what we mean is that Google will show favor on sites that they own. Think of it this way, the more you post, the bigger your online footprint becomes. If you want to make a giant footprint and climb the Google rankings – consistently post videos on your YouTube channel. (Stay tuned for more about this expansive topic in a blog to come!)

Pinterest: Empowering Creativity

Does your business cater to creative types? If so, Pinterest is a place that you want to be.

What started simply as a niche operation has blossomed into a real player in the social media landscape. Like Instagram, Pinterest is also a youngster in terms of years of operation. But Pinterest is ever-growing with a reported 150 million users and counting. Currently, the virtual pinboard contains over 75 billion ideas! Even more impressively, according to one study, “87 percent of Pinners have purchased something they’ve seen on Pinterest, while 93 percent plan to do so”. Needless to say, Pinners are serious when it comes to their pins. Two-thirds of all pins now showcase a brand or product. What a great way to get your brand out there!

The “why” behind Pinterest is clear. Pinterest is the platform where creativity is king. This platform has done a fantastic job of creating a community specifically for lovers of the DIY. It is time for your business to get out there and help foster that creativity!

LinkedIn: Credibility and Credentials

Now, let us venture to the other side of the spectrum. If Pinterest is for the creative types,

then LinkedIn is for the business world. It is a platform specifically tailored to businesses and working professionals . LinkedIn allows for professionals to put on display their credentials and be constantly networking digitally. We aren’t just talking North American professionals either. The more than 500 million users hail from a whopping 200 countries. This platform boasts more than 10 million job postings and showcases data from over 9 million companies.

Why should your business be on LinkedIn? The answer is this: we are living in the age of

credibility. In fact, your business is only as impactful as it is credible. If you want your business to be taken seriously, look no further. Not only will your business be seen as credible, but you will also generate more clicks to your website. A recent study examined 2 million monthly visits to over 60 different cooperation websites. Out of all of the social media options, LinkedIn accounted for nearly two-thirds of referrals to homepages during this time period. This majority far surpassed any other social media platform during the same timeframe.

Twitter: The Relevancy Platform

Let’s rewind back to the 2016 Presidential election. Whether you love the man, or hate

the ground that he walks on, Donald Trump took the world by storm. This meteoric rise to power came about, in large part, due to Trump’s huge Twitter presence. Politics aside, there is a lot that we can learn from how Donald Trump used Twitter. The biggest lessons of the Twitter “Trump phenomenon” is to post concisely, post often, and post on-message.

Twitter is very much a “what have you tweeted for me lately” kind of platform. If your

business does not have the bandwidth to provide relevant, up to-the-minute content, you might want to steer clear. In fact, while there is no clear consensus, most experts suggest that your company should be tweeting at least 15 times a day to be effective. Companies that are U.S. based but have clients overseas may also want to invest some time in Twitter. According to the site’s statistics, 79% percent of their accounts are located outside of the United States. All in all, if up to the minute relevancy is key to your industry: work on maintaining a presence on Twitter.

Google+: The Google Multiplier

To be blunt, Google+ is not at all an impressive social platform. The social network was

originally launched with the direct purpose of competing with Facebook. Through hindsight we can see that this was not the smartest play on the part of the powerful search engine. The site reportedly receives 27 million unique visitors a month. On its face that number may seem somewhat notable. That is, until you take into account the fact that Google+ purports to have 375 million active accounts.

You may be wondering exactly why we are even bringing up Google+ with all this in mind. Let’s take a step back. Remember our catch-phrase, “Google smiles on Google”? Apply the very same logic to Google+. Although we would argue that the actual social value of this platform is minimal, the SEO potential is quite crucial. At the very least, simply having a Google+ account will propel that account higher up the list of search results. Once on your page, a potential client could easily find a link to your website. At the end of the day, that is one of the main purposes of social media as whole – to drive traffic to your website.

Snapchat: Send it and Forget It

Snapchat is by far the most laid back of all social media. This is due, in large part, to the

fleeting nature of Snaps themselves. Once opened, a single Snap only remains on the Snapchat servers for 24 hours. After the allotted time, the Snap disappears forever. Younger generations have really taken to Snapchat. An estimated 45% of 18-34 use this app in North America. (Important Note: Snapchat is only available through the mobile phone app and not on a browser like most platforms) 3 billion Snaps are created every day. In terms of time spent, users spend an average of 30 minutes a day in the app.

Why Snapchat? If you’re going after a younger audience, it is a great way to showcase your authenticity. The necessity for perfection doesn’t exist with Snapchat. Don’t try to sell yourself via your Snaps. The audience will be able to smell that from a mile away. Instead, your business has the awesome opportunity to show a VIP style look at your organization that is as real as it is raw.

Now that you have a more in depth understanding of the different social media options, what social media platforms should your company be using? Don’t hesitate to leave an answer below. And, as always, we are all ears if you have any questions or comments. Together, let’s challenge the perception of possible with our social media!

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