How to Determine if a Social Network Is Right for Your Brand

@Nicole | Social, Strategy

It seems like every few months a new social network comes to the forefront as “the” place to be when it comes to sharing branded content online. So how can your company identify when this social expansion is worthwhile and when to pass? We’ve laid out a few considerations that can help your brand decide when to delve into new networks.

Identify Your Goals

First, consider why you are thinking about joining a new social platform. What is it that you hope your brand can gain from joining?

To answer this question, think about your goals. If you see a gap in your current media strategy, such as direct interaction with customer service inquiries, perhaps it is time to join Twitter, which makes getting in touch with a brand fast and convenient for users. Or perhaps you see high potential for business leads on LinkedIn but your brand isn’t currently active on the platform. Joining these networks can add a huge benefit to a business and can make a social presence more well rounded for a brand if the space is right.

Hone Your Content

Now that you know the reasoning for diving into a new network, you need to consider how your brand will maintain a presence on this platform. Do you have the bandwidth as well as the content to support it?

If the answer is yes, then you’re on the right track to add a new network. The best approach once your new profile is launching is to utilize analytics. Keep a close eye on what content is resonating most with fans. There may be a period of trial and error at first. Keep your content as varied as possible, then step back and dig into what pieces of content your fans connect with. It’s only when taking a hard look back at the data that you’ll be able to discern next steps.

Understand Your Competitors

Getting an understanding of what your competitors are doing on a social channel can help you identify how you can create a unique presence for your own brand. Do both a quantitative and qualitative look at their activity- how often are they posting, what kind of content are they focusing on, what content is exciting their fans?

Dig into items that matter to your brand, such as follower count, follower growth rate, engagement levels and engagement types to get an understanding of where your competitors stand as a benchmark for your brand on the platform.

The Takeaway

The most important thing is to focus on what is important to your customers. Following the latest trend won’t mean anything if your target audience isn’t also on that platform, wanting to engage with your brand. It is better to select a few networks that you can manage effectively and provide a solid ROI for your business than to overextend yourself. And when you see a new network become the next trending platform, you’ll have a solid sense of whether or not it is the right place for your brand to join.

Additions & Feedback

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