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Social media is highly targeted, incredibly flexible and uniquely personal, with a multitude of options available to any business seeking to bring their budding brand to life in the digital world.

The social experts at HootSuite say that “as a new [or small] business, it’s important to choose a marketing channel that offers the best results with the most prudent resources. Nowadays, more small businesses prefer social media marketing to other marketing channels, to help increase their brand’s reach, increase sales, and expand their professional network.”

But why is this? Are there really that many people using social media that you can market too? How do you choose what platform/s to use and who to target?

Social media statistics

Facebook has

  • 2.23 billion monthly active users on average
  • 1.15 billion daily active users on mobile
  • over 1.47 billion daily active users
  • 5 new profiles are created every second

Snapchat has

  • 188 million daily active users
  • Over 10 billion videos viewed per day

Twitter has

  • 330 million active users
  • hundreds of millions of tweets per day

LinkedIn

  • Over 500 million members in 200 countries and territories
  • 7 million members alone who are Australian

There are a range of other platforms out there, but Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter and LinkedIn are some of the giants of the space. The likes of Facebook and Twitter have mostly survived the rise and fall of many competitors, making them constants. Instagram and Snapchat on the other hand are gaining fast on their bigger brothers in the social space, both in terms of user numbers and daily usage.

The most important thing is to choose the platform that best speaks to your brand and your customers. Think about your target demographics and which platforms they use the most prolifically. Is your product highly visual? Go with a platform that is image based. Choose the one or two options that suit your business best and drive your strategy through them.

Why social media is right for your business

Statistics aside, there are many reasons to use social media to market your business. Social media is highly targeted, incredibly flexible and uniquely personal. It has a variety of options available to any business seeking to bring their budding brand to life in the digital world.

Being an ICT genius is not a necessity. All it takes is experimentation and a bit of guidance.

Forbes has highlighted that social media marketing can yield:

  • increased brand loyalty via consistent communication and engagement when and where the consumers are
  • higher recognition with help from regular, relevant posting
  • greater volume of conversion opportunities via e-commerce facilities and targeted sales journeys

The Queensland Government has also stated that social media marketing is:

  • Free to low cost depending on the degree of usage
  • A faster, easier way to reach consumers on the go

As with all other elements of marketing your business, there is no one-size-fits-all logic with social media. Each platform has its own strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. All of which are specific to you and your business.

The best starting point is to look at the major players and consider what is right for your business in light of the current market and your competition. You could also follow the likes of Wired, Mashable or Gizmodo to stay on top of changes to current social media platforms and to learn about any new ones that crop up.

Matching your strategy

Social media should never be tacked onto your business or marketing strategy or done in isolation. It needs to be integrated into your overall strategy to the same degree as any other planned activity or chosen medium. When properly connected to in-store activities and other offline promotions, social media can greatly augment your voice by giving it life and reach.

Be diligent

As with all forms of marketing activity, it is essential that you remain diligent and consistent when utilising social media. From posting content and updating your profile through to managing engagement and collating data, you need it to be part of your routine in order to make the most of your time and money.


For more advice on marketing your business TAFE Queensland's Small Business Solutions workshops and mentors can help.

LEARN MORE ABOUT SMALL BUSINESS SOLUTIONS

VIEW BUSINESS AND MANAGEMENT COURSES

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