Today’s blog post is one that we are SO jazzed to bring you! As professional marketers, we’re very aware of each platform’s strengths and weaknesses, but it’s sometimes hard to distinguish which platforms are worth your time and energy. Everyone has their opinions, and depending on your business there are platforms better suited for you. Here is our take on some of the most popular social media platforms and which ones we think are worthwhile for the type of business you may have.
Disclaimer: Unless you have a full team of people supporting your brand, maintaining all of these on your own is likely not sustainable! To market yourself well, you DON’T have to focus on all of these. Deep breath friend, you’re doing just fine on 2-3, okay?
Without further ado, here’s the lineup of platforms and their pros + cons. From there, we’ll help you distinguish where you should focus your energy:
Instagram: There’s no better place to start than with the true powerhouse of social media apps for small businesses (specifically, creatives)! It’s no secret that Instagram is a favorite. Here are our thoughts on why (and why not):
PRO: Instagram is one of the top utilized platforms currently, and it easily allows businesses to showcase both visuals and messaging. There are features to support businesses including stickers, a shop features, ads, and more! Regardless of what kind of business you run, we’d recommend utilizing Instagram in your marketing efforts.
CON: Dare we say it, the algorithm. With Instagram consistently changing, it can be hard to keep up with what is and isn’t performing well. While this isn’t a reason to necessarily avoid the app, it can make it harder and less feasible to adequately market your brand on Instagram.
Blog: Your blog gives you a fantastic opportunity to take your potential clients deeper in understanding your values, vision, and mission. By educating, entertaining, and encouraging potential customers through your blog, you have the ability to market your brand in a unique way.
PRO: Your blog is hosted within your website, making it an area of the internet that you OWN. By placing content onto your blog or website, you’re helping build your brand’s reputation through good SEO. Additionally, your blog is attached to other pages of your website, including your shop or services page, making it easier for people to turn into paying customers after gaining value from your blog!
CON: Our attention spans are getting shorter and shorter, so long–form content is not always the most effective way to gain people’s interest. With that being said, blogs can be a very effective way to convert warm leads into customers. A 1000 word blog might not get someone introduced to you, but it could easily turn a warm audience member into a client who just neeed a *little* more info on your offering before purchasing.
Tiktok: It’s no secret that Tiktok is *kinda* a big deal right now. While we can’t speak into the long-term benefits of prioritizing Tiktok (it’s only a couple years old), we can uncover some of the benefits (and downsides) of why it may be useful for marketing your small business.
PRO: Video content is KING right now. Plus, Tiktok’s short-form content is ideal for what people are responding to best right now. Not to mention, everybody and their mother is currently spending time on Tiktok, making it easy to connect with your ideal customer!
CON: Video content naturally takes a bit of time to create, and depending on the nature of your business, it might not be the most critical platform to utilize. More traditional companies might have a harder time gaining traction on Tiktok since it’s geared towards ‘trending’ content types.
LinkedIn: In case you’ve never thought of LinkedIn as a social media platform, here’s a reason to do so! While it might not be for everyone, there ARE good reasons to utilize it in your marketing strategy depending on the nature of your business.
PRO: While LinkedIn is something that many people are familiar with, the market of companies marketing on LinkedIn is more scarce. Since it isn’t a saturated platform, you have a chance to stand out and gain traction with a unique market while sharing the business, team, and news of the company via LinkedIn.
CON: Chances are, people aren’t browsing LinkedIn to spend money or make a purchase. Not to say they won’t, but it isn’t the goal of LinkedIn. With that being said, if your company doesn’t align with the mission of LinkedIn (networking, business, finance, leadership, etc), LinkedIn may not be a valuable marketing platform for you.
Facebook: A platform we all know and love, but is it worthwhile in marketing your brand?! Valid question! In our humble opinion, we think YES, but it isn’t the perfect platform either:
PRO: Facebook has over 3 BILLION users, nearly double that of Instagram. So while it might not have the appeal of “going viral” as easily as Instagram or Tiktok, it does have the audience to make it worthwhile. One of our favorite aspects of Facebook is the opportunity to create content and interactions inside of targeted groups. This is one of our favorite ways to help companies market within the Facebook realm. Facebook also easily pairs with Instagram, making the content creation and posting process easier.
CON: If your target audience is a younger crowd, or you’re looking to gain reach through trending content, Facebook might not be your best marketing tool.
Email: Getting started in email marketing can feel really overwhelming, so if you’re gonna take the leap, it needs to be worthwhile, right? Depending on your business structure, it might be worth it!
PRO: Through email marketing, you can distinguish your audience as more invested than that of your social media following. When people take the step of opting into your emails, you can rest assured they are interested in purchasing from you, or at least considering it. Email is a platform that YOU own, and you’re able to market to your email list as VIP members who hear the latest and greatest news first. Although your email list might not be as high in subscribers as your social following, those numbers go a lot further in conversions.
CON: We all have email lists we’re part of that we send straight to the trash. That is bound to happen with email. If your emails aren’t providing value to your audience, you can find yourself spending time creating them for nothing. If you’re going to utilize email, make sure it’s in a strategic way! This might take you some time!
Pinterest: Specifically for creatives, Pinterest is a social platform that quickly comes into mind when we think about marketing. Pinterest is a platform with immense power, but depending on the nature of your business, it might or might not do the heavy lifting you’re hoping for.
PRO: Pinterest gets hundreds of millions of views per month in the United States alone. For businesses that revolve around visuals, this can be extremely powerful. For photographers, florists, influencers, etc, Pinterest can bring in very valuable business. Pinterest is also a directory to your other content. If you have blogs, freebies, and social media profiles that are active, you can utilize Pinterest to point people to those places to receive more value from you.
CON: If your brand has a very specific demographic: entrepreneurs in Des Moines Iowa (or something along those lines), Pinterest may not be the best at targeting those exact people. Pinterest works best for online, evergreen products that are widely available, or free resources and value from online creators.
As you can see, there are a lot of social platforms to choose from (these aren’t even all of them), and there are pros and cons to each. With that being said, we’d encourage you to figure out which 2-3 will be MOST helpful for your specific business, and then create a plan to unite those, so that your content creation process is as easy as possible.
If you’re having a hard time deciding which platforms are right for you, shoot us a message. We’d LOVE to help!