My favourite social media for business:
There are many social media options out there. My favourite social media for business are the four below because, in my experience, they deliver results and the content I create for these platforms works well for my clients:
- YouTube (not quite like other social media platforms but very effective)
- Google my Business – Google Posts (also not social media really, but valuable)
How do they differ?
Below is what I have discovered in my experience of using these social media platforms for business.
1. Facebook Business Pages (social media for business)
Who is this for?
Facebook business pages are great for the B2C space, small businesses and for smaller businesses offering products or services to a larger business, in my experience.
- Your own business listing. Facebook pages create a type of business listing with location, contact details and reviews which helps to reach those people or businesses in that location.
- Content Creator. Facebook has its own content creator studio where you can schedule and manage posts, videos, stories and more.
- Facebook Ads. The advertising element of Facebook is powerful in reaching new audiences with detailed specific criteria so that your advert can reach the group of people you would like to target.
But, advertising is only half of the story. The reason why Facebook is a useful social media for business option, is the amount of information and feedback that it provides:
- Feedback with Analytics or Insights. The comprehensive analytics and insights that Facebook provides from posts, videos, stories and adverts helps you to make better decisions. So instead of posting the same stuff out there and getting the same results, you can see what works and what doesn’t, then adapt your strategy according to that valuable information. That’s why I’m a fan. More helpful data means data-driven decisions rather than praying to the Internet gods for a good result!
The not so good?
Facebook has a changing algorithm (a behind-the-scenes system that decides whether or not to show your post to a bigger audience based on which posts the algorithm thinks are likely to be popular). This means keeping an eye on your reach and analytics regularly to see if you are reaching the right people and to change things up if not. It’s about regular monitoring, testing and tweaking for results.
2. Instagram Business Profile (social media for business)
Who is this for?
Instagram is a great social media for business platform. As a visual platform, it can be beneficial for products, events and any services that can be communicated well visually. I think it works better for B2C (business to customer) or for collaboration with small businesses.
What: It is predominantly all about photos, art, graphics and video content (posts, reels, stories) and has a strong entertainment element. This means that most people go on Instagram to be entertained, in a way, but that is why it provides an opportunity for product placement and relationship building through interactive visual stories.
- Business profile. You can make a business profile with location, a short summary and one link only (there’s a hack for that which I will talk about in a future article).
- Build a following. Instagram for business is a great place to build a following for your brand, its values, what it stands for, the products you sell, the events that people should know about and services that they would love to enjoy.
- Instagram shops. If you sell products, you can connect your online shop to Instagram shops so that people can make purchases directly from Instagram whilst they are enjoying content on there for entertainment.
- Reach the right people. I think of Instagram as a collection of visuals where you can build a connection with your audience through the values that you both have in common. And, when running adverts, I think of it as almost a scrolling movie where your product or service is placed because it is relevant to the user. If people share your values or interest in a specific topic, they are likely to follow you and see your posts. This is much better and focused targeting than, say, a billboard that targets anyone who drives by.
The bonus: It is owned by Facebook so you can schedule your posts in Facebook Creator Studio. The analytics are linked to Facebook and you can see insights into how your content is doing. This means a more integrated app for two platforms and less time to get your content out there on both.
3. YouTube (social media for business)
Who is this for?
Businesses who want to reach people globally or a first point of contact demonstrate a skill by giving tips that ultimately brings the audience into your business as customers. I think YouTube works well for entertainment and product businesses that sell B2C or for larger businesses who want to create a stronger online profile.
- Global reach. YouTube can have a much larger geographical reach around the world!
- Good for website traffic. As it is owned by Google and Alphabet Inc, YouTube is connected to the Google search engine and can bring more traffic to your website.
- Monetisation. There is an opportunity to make money from YouTube. Once you have 10k+ subscribers, monetisation of videos is possible and it becomes an extra income generator. There is also the opportunity to sell chat stickers and other in-app products.
- An indirect marketing tool. I like to think of YouTube as an indirect marketing tool that works well for services where it is possible to share knowledge on a topic or provide tips, tricks and training on how to do something.
- Analytics. YouTube provides comprehensive information about the geographical location of your viewers, most popular videos, age groups and lots more. If you use it alongside a service like TubeBuddy, you can get even more information about the best keywords to use to reach more of your audience.
You need to spend considerable time on this a YouTube strategy, content and interaction to get good results.
YouTube is different to other social media…
Most other social media platforms focus on short bites of content and encourage scrolling through. YouTube is like a collection of small TV channels run by individuals, businesses, organisations etc. It does have a shorter scrolling video option that is similar to other social media like TikTok (YouTube Shorts) but has always hosted all sorts of videos including documentaries, ‘how to’ videos, educational videos, fitness, technology, science, entertainment videos and more. You can watch something substantial or something quick and follow the channels you like. That’s why it can be beneficial as a central part of a marketing plan – it is one of the most successful social media platforms.
4. Google My Business – Google Posts (social media for business)
Who is this for?
If you have a business listing on Google My Business, you will have access to Google Posts. They are not technically social media but they are picked up by the Google search engine and that’s why they are valuable.
- Increased reach. Most people find themselves ‘googling’ whether they are searching for information, products or services. So, the value of your business content being found on Google can be huge as you will reach more people who are searching for what you offer.
- Connected to Google search engine. Google My Business helps you to add more to your profile on your Google listing. That means, there’s more for the search engine to find when someone searches for the products or services that you offer.
- Increase website traffic. Add links to your posts to direct traffic to your website and post videos and photos on there for visitors to see.
- Reviews: You can get reviews on here too. So, when someone searches for your SEO keywords and sees your listing, it is likely to stand out with your branded content.
- Insights. You can see the numbers using Insights. This is helpful because it shows you what people are searching for when they find your listing, how many people saw your posts and photos and the number of overall views and visits to website your business received over a time frame. This is valuable information that tells you whether the content you are sharing is working for you…and the best thing is that the Google My Business insights are quick and easy to view! If you also use the Search Console or more detailed (and sometimes very complex) Google Analytics with your website, you are adding to the valuable information that helps you to make better decisions about your marketing.
Don’t try to do all-of-the-social-media-channels if you have limited resources. Pick two and do them well. Only go for YouTube if you can commit enough time to running a YouTube channel.
Need some help with your marketing?
Ria works in Warwickshire and helps UK and European businesses remotely from the desk of The Creative Penguin. Get in touch to see how she can help your business: [email protected]