Social media platforms you should know about
In our series about business social media, we’ve covered the basics: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and YouTube. But as we’ve seen, new social media platforms seem to appear overnight and suddenly become wildly popular. What about these other sites? Here’s a closer look at some of the newer social media platforms you should know about.
You’ve probably heard about Google+, Google’s answer to social networking. This platform works similarly to Facebook, but has a few “extra” features like Hangouts and Circles. Hangouts allow you to video chat with your audience live. For businesses, this can be a great way interact with your audience. Circles are a strategic way to organize all of your friends, so you then have greater control over who can see what posts.
Should you be on Google+? Many people are on the fence about this platform. Being a Google offering, there is SEO benefit to being active on the platform, so in our opinion, it’s worth your time to set up and customize a profile.
Instagram is an increasingly popular photo-sharing social media platform. Photos are uploaded, edited with “filters,” and then posted and shared with followers. Instagram is smart visual marketing. The two main goals of Instagram photos are to create beauty or share humor. Businesses using Instagram can showcase the products, give behind-the-scenes information, show some company personality, and share sneak-peeks. Instagram now allows users to upload 12-second video clips, adding even more visual marketing benefits.
Should you have an Instagram? Instagram is great for capturing in-the-moment photos of your business and team in action. If your target market is active on Instagram, this is an excellent platform to connect with them on a more personal level.
Foursquare is a location-based social media platform. Users create a profile, and then “check in” to physical locations. Businesses have the ability to offer “specials” and “deals” on Foursquare. Other strategies include offering deals for check-in’s – for example, a free coffee after 20 check-in’s, or 10% off after 10 check-in’s.
Should you be on Foursquare? If you are a brick-and-mortar business with a physical location, it’s important you at least claim your Foursquare location. Marketing on Foursquare could be a great way to increase foot traffic and encourage repeat business.
Vine is a mobile app from Twitter allowing users to create short (6-second!) videos that play in a continuous loop. The site has been gaining momentum, and businesses have been coming up with creative ways to use Vine for marketing. The concept of Vine is similar to Instagram, only with videos instead of photos (Vine was in existence before Instagram added video capabilities).
Should you use Vine? This platform has a lot of potential for creative marketing. If the challenge of communicating a message in a 6-second video gets you excited and your target market uses the platform, you should play around with it. But if you don’t have time, focus your energies on other social media sites.
No, this is not a joke – MySpace is back, thanks largely in part to Justin Timberlake. The rebranding is calling MySpace a social entertainment network, with an emphasis on music.
Should you have a MySpace profile? Right now, it seems like the new MySpace is geared toward the creative industries such as musicians and photographers. If you’re in the entertainment industry, especially music, it might be something to look into. Other than that, time will only tell.
Are you currently using any of these platforms for your business? Are there any others we missed?