In a recent article by Gavin O’Malley, Instagram Ad Impressions Surge, we learn about the impressive increase in Instagram ad impressions. This sparked my interest because as a marketing professional it made me wonder whether individuals would seek out these opportunities simply due to the high impression rates. As always I like to come from a small niche business perceptive and demonstrate why organizations might want to think twice before biting on the bait of sky high impressions.
In my perspective there is a lot more that goes into choosing the right social media platform than how may impressions you get, or even the cost per click figures (For another reading that discusses followers and impressions true value I encourage you to read this article by Neda Ulaby for NPR titled How Do You Measure Passion? Figuring The Value Of Social Media Followers.)
This is an extremely insightful article as it poses the question, do the numbers really matter as much as the passion those followers have for the person or topic being discussed? Do shear numbers of impressions really matter as much as really valuable ones. For instance, your business could choose to advertise on Instagram and reach an impressive amount of individuals, but are these individuals interested in your topic? Will they care about what your organization has to offer? Or are they just a follower that rarely interacts and will most likely never participate in your cause.
These are important concepts to consider before selecting the social media platform that has the most followers or impressions. You need to think beyond the large tantalizing numbers.
Here are my tips and some insight to consider before selecting the right social media channel for you:
1. Where Is Your Audience?
I can say easily that in my current line of work even though Instagram offers a lot of impressions it would not be the ideal platform for my organization. The audience I currently cater to is an older very busy group that does not really have a presence on Instagram. They are more likely to be found browsing LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter. Even for Twitter it can be a stretch to reach them. So for you, you need to know where your audience will be because a few strong impressions or better that a ton of weak ones.
2. Know Your Content
What content do you use to reach your audience? In what medium do you best describe your organizations value: a picture, a short blurb, an event posting, an article title, a news release? It can be easier to choose an ideal social media platform to focus on and advertise with if you know what content is the strongest when reaching your target audience. For instance, at my current organization we have five events tailored to a specific industry’s executives. In this instance Facebook serves as a strong platform because we can make a separate event, and post all the event photos in an album for all attendees to see. We also use Twitter for our events to promote before the event and during to keep attendees up to date. Plus advertising is effective because we can reach our speakers, vendors and attendees.
Those platforms are optimal for sharing event details but what about consulting? One the other spectrum we offer is consulting services for very complex topics. This area is hard to explain through 140 characters and does not photograph well. So for this content we turn to LinkedIn where we can post more comprehensive content and advertise specifically in a business oriented environment. The bottom line is you have to know what content you are going to produce to represent your organization and think about what platform it would make the most sense to see it on.
3. What Do You Want From The Exposure
When you start considering social media platforms what is the end goal? Do you want more followers, website traffic, fans, clients, or maybe you just want your name out there?
It is important to know what you want out of the exchange. If you are looking to network and build professional relationships than LinkedIn is probably right for you. But if you want shares and want your name or content to spread Twitter maybe a better option. Or maybe you are a professional photographer looking for more business, Instagram may be ideal. With so many options you need to know the social media platforms in and out as well as what you are looking to gain from the exposure.
Check Out These Resources For Further Reading
New To Social Media Platforms For Advertising & Marketing, Check Out This Resource: The Social Media Advertising Beginners Guide For Twitter, Facebook And LinkedIn.
Want To Learn More About Measuring Success With Social Media Marketing & Advertising, Check Out This Resource: Not All Social Media Returns Can Be Quantified – But Here Are Some Ways To Measure Your Success.
Want Help Deciding Which Platforms Are Right For Your Business, Check Out This Resource: Which Social Media Channels Should I Use For My Business?
Need Help Matching Your Content To A Social Media Channel, Check Out This Resource: Matching Platform And Content Type To Audience