Remember when social media was limited MySpace? What a simple digital world it was back then! Now you have a choice of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, and Pinterest – and those are just the popular ones. There is also Flickr, Reddit, Snapchat, WhatsApp, Quora, Mix, Digg… we could go on, but you get the point.

For a small business owner, keeping up with the plethora of social media and leveraging it for your business is absolutely daunting. The good news is, you don’t have to. Use social media strategically and profitably by tapping into the current trends, and even then, only the trends that make the most sense for your business.

Here’s how to do that.

1. Matching the platform with your audience

Most social media platforms have analytics that show how they appeal to specific audiences. Pinterest is very popular among women, while LinkedIn is designed for the business community. Instagram is driven by photos while Facebook drives interactions and conversations. Therefore, a photographer is best served by Instagram, insurance brokers with LinkedIn, etc.

2. Fostering trust

Privacy is a big issue with social media and thanks to the news of the Facebook Cambridge Analyitca scandal, consumers only want to interact with mediums they can trust. Regardless of which social media platform you choose, do everything to ensure your viewer’s privacy. Then list how you are protecting that privacy and create a post about it. Pin that post to the top of your feed or link to it on every post, so your potential buyers see that you put effort into their privacy protection.

3. Posting original content

Consumers are tired of seeing popular posts shared, especially when it has nothing to do with the company sharing it. Trying to get likes and views by sharing “10 Cats that Broke the Internet” when your business is about customized electronics is going get an eye roll from your intended audience. Instead, take the time to source or write relevant, fresh, quality content that your readers find relatable. They will go to I Can Haz Cheeseburger for their daily distractions. They are coming to your social media sites for information and education. Go for quality, not quantity.

4. Using Hootsuite

Should you use one site to put the same post on multiple platforms? Yes. Not every consumer frequents the same social media sites. Some prefer Twitter over Facebook, some prefer LinkedIn over Instagram. Small business owners can save time and resources by using sites like Hootsuite to post, schedule, and monitor content from one convenient location.

These trends will get you started in maximizing social media for your business, but growth means you no longer have the time to write, monitor, and respond to posts; research the best platforms; design advertising campaigns; explore trends; and everything else it takes to be successful on social media. When that happens, it’s time to call in the experts. Great West Digital is a professional agency with expertise in social media. We keep on top of the trends so you don’t have to. Rely on our services to bring your customers the content that matters to them – on the platforms they prefer. Contact us today to learn more.