Craig Hodges

Craig Hodges

Thursday, 09 June 2011 16:18

Should I be selective of the social media avenues I use for my business?

Should I set up LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc accounts all at once when I launch? Or should I pick and choose which social media platform to use? I’m starting up a driving experiences business and I’m not sure which medium I should be on.


The best thing about starting a business today in the social world is that there is so much more at your fingertips than ever before. The ability to market your business and build your customer base through social media has fundamentally changed the way entrepreneurs start their businesses. Gone are the days of multi-million dollar marketing campaigns and massive sales teams. Social media has brought us all closer together, but just like everything else it’s got to work for you and you business… if it doesn’t, don’t do it!


What we found when we launched King Content was that it was more effective for us to cover a multitude of social platforms rather than just the one, as each social media platform helped serve a different purpose business-wise.


The platforms that we chose (and we would definitely recommend choosing more that one as you can use them to feed each other) depends completely on the relevance they have to your business. We started by trying to cover a few bases, as we needed to build a customer base within the B2B space.


We started with LinkedIn as this was the best way for us to start developing a rapport with potential customers given we’re a B2B business. It enables us to develop cost-effective marketing campaigns via email, discussions and groups, and it enables us to target potential customers effectively and professionally –and most importantly it works!


Therefore, LinkedIn was a very useful social model from which to grow a professional ongoing clientele, rather than just sharing links and posts with anybody involved within the industry.


Alongside Linkedin we worked on building our Twitter following, which proved extremely useful from both a professional business perspective and a marketing/brand point of view. By following the tweets of those involved in all aspects of our industry we gained valuable insight into the changes within our markets and also make some very useful connections.


We soon began to pick up a lot of traction on Twitter and once our peers followed us in return and “retweeted” our posts it became somewhat of a snowball effect and we gained great respect as a leader in our field. It also helped however, that we had a blog on our website which we could leak Twitter followers back to as this acted as a way of bumping up our SEO and Google ranking.


Next came Facebook – and although we tackled Facebook alongside Twitter and LinkedIn, I’ll openly admit that this took a backseat, as it didn’t have the same benefit for us that the others did. Controversial I know, but as a company that provides content (and therefore isn’t likely to upload photos and too much personal company) it didn’t have the same appeal for our followers. It was useful to share links and to create relationships with other businesses but the speed/openness of Twitter made conversations with businesses much easier then Facebook. Saying this however, for a business such as a Driving Experience company, Facebook would be a perfect platform.


For any business where the customer is actively involved (especially in an exciting way) Facebook provides the perfect platform from which to share these experiences and spread the word.


In summary:


1.    Do your homework – social media is another marketing channel and requires the same amount of planning and strategy.

2.    Pick the platforms that suit your business and then attack them with the channel in mind.

3.    Learn from your mistakes (we made a few) and keep trying new angles.

4.    Learn from the masters (the companies not the so-called gurus) who have done it right.

5.    The social media landscape changes so quickly so keep up to speed with those that know it.

Craig Hodges is the founder of King Content, a digital content and marketing agency. Prior to this, Craig was co-founding director of Edge Custom Media, working with clients such as Volkswagen, St George Bank and BMW. 


Ask Craig or any other StartupSmart mentor a question here.

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