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A business guide to social media platforms

A business guide to social media platforms

If you’re looking to take advantage of these channels, the difficulty lies in determining which to use. Maintaining multiple accounts is time-consuming and not necessarily an effective tactic. Use our guide to handpick the platforms that will work best for your business and target demographic.

Facebook

According to its Q2 2014 report, Facebook has 1.32 billion monthly active users, making it the biggest social network in the world. An Ipsos MORI infographic from 2013 shows that 49 per cent of Brits use Facebook, and reveals a relatively diverse demographic. The gender split is almost even, and more than half of users are aged 35-64.

To get started, create a page and accurately fill in as much information as possible. For people to keep updated with your content, you need them to ‘Like’ your page. Give them incentive to do this by sharing high-quality, relevant content and offering other benefits such as exclusive discount codes.

Organic exposure can be difficult. Existing customers may be willing to ‘Like’ your page, and if they interact with your page, their friends may do so too. However, if you want to build a solid foundation of followers, you should consider advertising on Facebook.

Twitter

Twitter has 255 million monthly active users. Ipsos MORI data shows that 40 per cent of the British users are aged 15-24, making it the ideal platform for youthful brands.

Creating an account is quick and easy, but you’ll need to build your follower base to make tweeting worthwhile. As with Facebook, you should deliver sharable content to boost interactions and increase exposure organically, or invest in onsite advertising.

Google+

Creating a Google+ page can help increase your visibility on search and Maps, ensuring potential customers always find accurate information about your business. Allowing you to share images, links, YouTube videos, events and even host video chats via Hangouts, it’s a great multimedia platform.

Pinterest

According to a Wishpond infographic, 80 per cent of Pinterest users are female, and half are parents. This is therefore the perfect platform for businesses targeting families and women. It’s also ideal for visual brands, since success on this network relies heavily on the shareability of your images.

Sign up for a business account here, and start creating pin boards that are relevant to your brand. Share unique content and re-pin others’ to populate your boards and increase exposure.

LinkedIn

British LinkedIn users are predominantly affluent males educated to university level, Quantcast data shows. Catered towards professionals, this network is catered towards B2B organisations and companies looking to promote career opportunities.

Add your company, and encourage all of your staff to connect and share posts with their network. Use Sponsored Updates if you want to extend the reach of a popular post, and use the integrated analytics to monitor your success.

We couldn’t cover every social media platform out there, so we’d love to hear any recommendations you have for other networks. Share your advice in the comments below!

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