It’s been established that if you want your thing to succeed in today’s information based society you must be advertising online and using social media. Online ads and social media campaigns have the ability to target exact demographics and give consumers, businesses, and event planners the ability to interact in a much more powerful and engaging way than traditional forms of advertising like television, radio, and news. However, choosing which social media sites to utilize has become a very important and often overlooked step in getting your thing to succeed in the social media world. From the giants of social media like, Facebook, Youtube, and Twitter to sites that target more specific niches like Playfire and CultureInside Gallery, where you focus your attention could make or break your thing.
A few years ago experts were touting that one should use every social media outlet at his disposal in order to maximize a brand. This is a completely outdated and unrealistic concept in 2014. There would simply be too many sites for you to manage and too much information for you to create in order to stay engaged with your audience.
Then there’s this question: the world is a really big place and there is tons of information out there, how does one get noticed amongst the clutter that is consuming these vast social media sites? First, you’ve got to figure out what your thing is and then determine what your goals are. If your only goal is to get 10 thousand likes on Facebook, then you using social media wrong. All of those likes are meaningless unless you are engaging with your consumer. Remember, the point is to engage with your community so that they know of, and better relate to, your thing. Many people, businesses, and event coordinators have forgotten this fundamental concept and simply spam the Internet looking for meaningless follows on Twitter and petty likes on Facebook. They somehow don’t realize that spam isn’t engaging, and that it’s actually bad for their brand image. New and established brands alike have to stay away from this temptation if they want anyone to take their brand seriously. The companies and people that are engaging in these spamming activities have either: A. Gotten lost and forgotten what social media is supposed to be (a community of interested, likeminded individuals that otherwise could not, or would not, engage with one another) or b. have never understood what social media is and are dinosaurs trying to claw their way out of their imminent extinction.
I’m not saying that Facebook, Twitter and the other giant online communities aren’t useful or engaging, they are. My point is that there could be a better alternative you’ve overlooked or a niche within one of those sites that you should target instead of the entire world. Don’t be a dinosaur, be innovative, and stay on your toes. The Internet evolves much to fast for followers and you will never get anywhere if you don’t evolve, pick up your tools, and start creating. If your goal is to reach the entire world, yes choose Facebook, but if your goal is to get more people to your art gallery, weightlifting competition, LAN-party, or whatever your thing is, don’t rule out the possibility that there might be a niche site better suited for your needs.
Here are the steps to figuring out which social media site is right for you.
Step 1: Determine what your thing is
Step 2: Define your target demographic
i.e. Who cares about your thing?
Step 3: Google it! See if a social network for your niche exists. If it doesn’t, by all means make one! If your community exists in a giant like Facebook; great! Go there. Just make sure your engaging!
Step 4: Engage with the online community that cares about your thing. Because isn’t that what social media is all about?
P.S. Google keeps updating its algorithm and is trying to make engaging content king. Vast knowledge of SEO eventually is not going to matter. Work with Google, not against it. You will lose if you choose the latter.