• Mark Ghibril

What sup You Twit Face are you Linked and ready to Snap? - The Social Media Conundrum


"You are such a dinosaur" I was told few years ago when I first asked what Snapchat is. And I believe this is when Snap had just been out in the market for few weeks.

The speed of change of Social platforms is immense and I don't think I am alone in the world who is finding it challenging to know "which Social platform should I use and when?"!!

So we have WhatsApp, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Snapchat and many more. I definitely believe they all have a place, use and target audience but the simple fact is that there is no way we, as digital consumers or even enterprises, simply can create, consume and engage with same quality, time and effort on all of these platforms. This is what i previously coined "Focus Thinking Deficit". In addition, even though in their own right these platforms have disrupted the status quo, most of these social media tools have very similar functionalities, giving you the possibility to share content, audio, video (live ones as well), ephemeral content (short life Audio/video), possibility to give feedback through likes, shares, join groups, and of course being targeted with ads, shopping and much more.

So should you be Omni-Present? On all channels all the time engaging and consuming?

First and foremost, as per my last blog, content is king and therefore in any platform, as a digital consumer or digital enterprise, you should be ensuring your digital content is quality rather than quantity. In addition, Omni-present, from my perspective, is ensuring that omnichannel engagement is done with same quality of experience, content as well as consistency rather than being on all available channels and platforms.

Therefore, I recommend you refine your effort to specific Social Media platforms depending on what works for you well, what works for your friends, family, and/or consumers as well as what your audience participates actively in rather than passively consume.

So which platforms are best to do what?

First, I will cover general topics that apply to most of the social platforms, then I will capture the strength and weakness of some of the platforms. I know there are tools such as Hootsuite that helps you to schedule and post content on multiple channels from one place, however the audience is different and therefore you need to ensure your content is also geared correctly towards your audience.

Generalities

  1. You should post in multiple formats: One format is not applicable to all. Some market studies say that Videos are most likely to be shared and more engaging however you should cover different formats that your audience interact with.

  2. There is NO generic best time for posting: This will depend on the channel, topic and audience. You should build this up based on the analytics you get with your audience, post on different times and then keep the consistency.

  3. Do not overwhelm with large volume of posts: Hopefully it is given based on this post.

  4. Shorter posts are better: If you have a long article, link it from the social platform to your intranet page, blog, etc...

  5. Try to "Edutain": Teach your audience something useful, something in which you are an expert, and doing so in an enjoyable way.

WhatsApp

WhatsApp and similar messaging apps such as WeChat and Facebook Messenger have more than 4 billion users worldwide (combined). Therefore, reach is not an issue.

Strengths:

  1. One-on-One communication with customers is possible and therefore can offer personalized and closer interaction and service to consumers.

  2. Quicker reaction to consumer requests, demands and more important complaint.

Weaknesses:

  1. No mature model how to use to grow business

  2. Require quick reaction (expectations are almost realtime)


YouTube

YouTube is the by far the leading platform for online videos.

Strengths:

  1. Videos are the most engaging content so far and YouTube makes it free and easy for you to upload videos and create quality ads and share and integrate on your pages.

  2. Being owned by Google, videos on YouTube provide both better rankings in Google search but also its own search is hugely popular and users by its users.

Weaknesses:

  1. You cannot control whose promotional content is placed on your videos (may be even it could be one of your competitors) and who might download your video.

  2. YouTube management and upload functionalities are time consuming and doesn't offer much branding and design on their website to support your brand image.

Twitter

Twitter as fast, bite-size updates is quite strong in the market and has more than 320 million active users a month.

Strengths:

  1. Followers are consumers who actively followed someone else and are interested in their info.

  2. # hashtag is leading the way in channeling engagement.

Weaknesses:

  1. "Twitter Fatigue" as the volume of messages can lead to information overload or message being lost

  2. Twitter Ads are not very targeted and therefore not as efficient as other platforms.


Facebook

Facebook is the largest social network, with over 1.79 billion active monthly users.

Strengths:

  1. Easiness to create profile, connect with friends, family and fans to your brand.

  2. Easy to market and targeted reach to the right users for your brand.

Weaknesses:


  1. "Fake News" and fake profiles are a challenge for Facebook users and enterprises.

  2. Privacy is still big with Facebook and you need to ensure you are aware of those and what fits with your personal and corporate principles that you share. 


LinkedIn

With its position in the market, almost every industry professional, expert, and recruiter has a LinkedIn profile.

Strengths:

  1. Almost no competition in its market for with professional and recruiters.

  2. Professionals also use it for checking businesses, their brands and their employees making the "pull" of information stronger than other platforms.

Weaknesses:

  1. Targeting in LinkedIn only works either business to business or if you want to target professionals.

  2. Creation of personal or business page takes time with numerous features and information required before you see traction on your presence in LinkedIn.

Snapchat

Snap started the ephemeral, or disappearing, visual content sharing trend and made it viral!

Strengths:

  1. With Snap, you can show the human side of your brand and it's ok to be unpolished and flawless content.

  2. Snap is in a very strong position within the Millennials plus Generation Z demographics.

Weaknesses:

  1. To be able to cut through the noise, messages will not only have to be creative and unique, but most of all worded in headline- and sub-headline style by making every line and word count.

  2. Ephemeral content is now available on other more mature and with larger base platforms making Snap's competition quite strong.

For the next 100 days, start with measuring your digital consumer engagement and identify which Social platforms are giving you the most return on engagement and start refining and concentrating your Social activities with enhanced quality and content to those platforms your digital consumers engage with you most.

#social #platform #Digital #Consumer #Marketing #Engagement

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