Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: Mix a Recipe for Success
Grandma knew best how to blend just the right ingredients, measured in pinches and dashes, to make a perfect dish. The same could be said for blending various social media sites for your business, with perhaps a little more precision and planning. Before we shove anything into the oven, however, let’s first make sure you already are a master chef and that you know your ingredients.
Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are all great tools for building your brand, but don’t jump in to all of them without a solid plan. It’s important to understand the nuances of each platform, and how one can complement the other. If you can’t do ONE social media platform well by providing solid content, engaging copy and a willingness to interact with your audience, adding more won’t help your bottom line. One well-executed social media site is far better than three or more sites with absentee administrators.
Understand the ingredients
Facebook: easily the biggest social media platform, with over 1.4 billion users.
- Strengths: Advertising platforms that allow you to customize your target; easy to tag, post events, share posts and pictures; most text-friendly of the three
- Shortcomings: changing algorithms have dwindled the percentage of people who will actually see organic posts; standing out can therefore be impossible unless you are willing to pay for it.
Twitter: 140-character-limit posts with 322 million active users
Strengths: building followers can be relatively easy; most people you follow will follow you back; frequency of posts is nearly limitless – you won’t turn anyone off if you post 10-20 times/day; highly mobile
Shortcomings: news is fleeting, and unless people visit your home page, tweets may not get seen unless they’re retweeted frequently by others, so management and updates are critical
Instagram: more active users (400 million) than Twitter, acquired by Facebook in 2012 for $1 billion. This photo and video-centric site easily allows photo sharing and use of filters to create effects on your images to enhance their impact.
Instagram allows users to post and share the post to their Facebook feed at the same time. This does not work in reverse; if you’re on Facebook, you won’t be able to share to your Instagram account, at least not now.
Strengths: photos shared can quickly develop a good following; if you have products – this is your mobile catalog; if you have services, pictures of clients, equipment you may use, other employees, your office, will do
Shortcomings: no text updates like Facebook and Twitter; if you don’t have a smartphone, you can’t use Instagram to any great lengths
Blending your social media with dashboards and analytics
Now, how do you make each platform play off the other? Have a strategy that knows who your target audience is, when they are online, how they view your sites (mobile v. desktop), etc., you can craft and schedule posts to meet them where they are, when they are. Not sure? Check out a survey of social media usage.
Dashboards allow you to post from one place to all or some of your various social media, and also allow you to schedule these posts. This alleviates the need for you to be tied to a computer or mobile device throughout the day. One caveat: this can be a threat to engaging with your audience. Do not just schedule and move on. You still need to monitor the comments and activity on your sites – all of them. However, dashboards allow you to view such activity and respond within one screen.
A good dashboard will also provide you with feedback on how well your posts are doing with analytics. In the case of SumAll, you can customize these reports with what is important to you, and get them delivered regularly to your inbox.
Don’t forget the content!
It all comes back to the words on your pages. Whether you have one or 20 social media sites, how you engage with your customers is key, and the rules here haven’t changed. The content is also very valuable when you are getting seo services dallas
- Remember the 80/20 rule: keep your posts less about direct promotion of your business, and more about sharing content that is interesting and relevant to your audience
- Cross promote, but don’t parrot everything: You can share your Instagram posts directly to Facebook, and that’s great. However, each platform can feature the same information without sounding cookie-cutter.
- You should also be driving your audience to your website with promotions that require a call to action (again 20 percent of the time).
- Use shortened URLs for Twitter – you only get 140 characters, and if a link is extra long, it’s a waste. Use sites like Bit.ly to shorten the number of characters used in a link
- RESPOND: positive or negative, people will walk away if they see questions or comments on your sites that simply go ignored. Be present. Be thankful for new followers. Comment or share other’s content to get noticed.
- Use hashtags thoughtfully. Three should be the max in a post, and they should follow what similar businesses are using to help your content be found
So for example, let’s say you have gotten a new product or employee. Best practice will be to post a photo of it on Instagram and share it to Facebook, which you can then add further commentary, and on your Twitter feed, you can link to the Facebook post with a brief shout out to introduce it.
Check out other brands in your industry that have multiple sites and compare their posts across their networks for further guidance. Even grandma was a junior cook at some point before she owned the kitchen, so get cookin’ to see your brand awareness rise.