Which social media channels are right for your business or organization?

Technology is changing faster than ever and it can be really difficult to keep up, even for someone like me, who spends a lot of time on the Internet for work (and play). Add in owning a small business or running an organization, perhaps on a limited budget and definitely with limited free time, and it's no wonder people are overwhelmed when it comes to deciding where to focus their energy. But not spending any time on social media could be hurting your venture. 

The best way to determine which social media channels are right for your business or organization is to find out where your customers are hanging out. Are they on Twitter all day sharing the latest news? Or do they mostly interact on Facebook, perhaps even in specific groups? Are they photo junkies, sharing and liking Instagram photos of food, vacation spots and cute animals?

Some industries and topics work better on some social media channels more than others. When I worked in the financial services industry, people were hesitant to publicly share specific information about individual stock holdings. But they were eager to stay on top of the news and how it was affecting financial markets worldwide. It was just a matter of testing a variety of networks and subjects before hitting on the right one for our target audience.

In addition to which social media channels you want to focus on, you'll need to decide how many deserve your attention. It seems a new social network pops up every day, but you don't need to be on them all. In fact, I think it's a waste of time to focus on more than a couple unless you're a very large company with an audience spread across many demographics and geographies. Most small businesses can and should only focus their attention on a few social media channels to keep them manageable, maximize their impact and use them effectively.

Once you determine where the people you want to reach are, you can go there too.

Still don't have time to find your audience and harness the power of social media to grow your business? I can help.