Social media is now part of most people’s daily lives. It’s hard to find anyone today who isn’t on at least one social media platform. On average most people subscribe to 2-3 social media sites. Today there are tons of different social media platforms available, with some having a more general appeal such as Facebook, while others are more niche related such as Reddit.

Signing up to all social media sites can be time-consuming and pointless if you cannot reach your intended audience. To better understand which social media channels might be relevant to your business or industry, we need to pose a few fundamental questions to better decide which social media sites are right for you.

1.  Who is my Audience?

Before you decide to open social media accounts with all the different platforms, it’s important to ask yourself, who is my audience? The idea is to understand the types of people visiting your website to know better where these groups are spending their time in terms of the different social media sites. Google Analytics is a great place to get more insight on your visitors. Which country or city are they coming from, what are your visitors’ age groups, and are they more male or female can be a few essential questions to ask yourself. The idea is to build a user profile that will help you understand where to find similar users across all the different social media sites.

2.  Where is my audience active and searching?

The next question we need to address is which social media platforms are your audience active on and performing searches for products or services related to your business. If you’re trying to target users looking for B2B services, you will want to open an account on LinkedIn. Maintaining a social media account, Pinterest might not be relevant in this case. By understanding where your audience is spending their time you can decide which social media accounts you need to open and maintain on an ongoing basis.

3.  What are your social media objectives?

Not every company is looking to achieve the same goals with their social media accounts. Therefore, it’s essential to map out your objectives before investing in opening and maintaining a new social media account. If you’re looking to increase brand awareness, you should open a Facebook page. If you’re looking for engagement and would like people to comment and share more, Twitter would be an excellent place for that. By defining your goals, such as sales, new signups, engagement, brand awareness, or others, you will better know which social media sites are right for you and your business.

4.  Which social media sites are your competition active on?

Suppose all else fails, and you can’t decide which social media sites are right for you. In that case, you can always perform a competitive analysis on similar companies in your field or industry and see where they are currently active.  You should look at their accounts and see which accounts are more active and which accounts are getting better engagement with their users. You don’t always need to reinvent the wheel. For example, if your competition is active on Facebook and Twitter, there’s a good chance you should be active on these sites too.

You don’t need to be everywhere.

Most companies are aware of social media and its power in helping you take any business to the next level. Some companies might think they should be present on every major or new social media network around. This is a mistake that can cost you in the long run.

Maintaining social media accounts requires time and proper planning. To achieve any kind of success using social media, you need to be active and upload new content or engage with your users daily. If you are not active on your company’s social media accounts, you won’t see the desired results. To ensure you are getting the most from your social media activities, you need to create a plan. Some companies will prepare their content in advance and simply upload it based on their monthly social media plan. You can also hire someone to manage all your social media accounts and content, so you never miss anything.

Social media is something every business should consider implementing if they aren’t already doing so. You need to make sure you’re on all the relevant sites but remember; you don’t need to be everywhere. As long as you’re active on your users’ social media sites and are posting new content regularly, you should see results.
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