There are obviously numerous platforms available in the realm of Social Media. The biggest question is which ones work for you. While I can’t give you that answer specifically, as it depends on your needs and goals, here are some of my favorite platforms to use.

 

Instagram

Instagram is currently the hottest platform out there. This site is all about visual content. Every post is a photo or a video – it’s that simple. Whether photos of you, your pets, your kids, your business, your products, or your random life experiences, everything is documented as a photo (or video). You can add descriptions and comment on photos to add additional layers of engagement. And with Instagram Stories (short lived content that expires after 24 hours) dominating the Instagram growth strategy, you have two different areas on Instagram to genuinely interact with your audience. The key to growing your audience on Instagram is to have a great bio that really describes your brand. Be personable and true to your brand voice. Instagram is a lot like Twitter in that you aren’t able to approve who follows you, unless you make your account private. So, be careful about what you’re sharing – anyone really can see these photos!

You can follow me on Instagram at @jenns_trends

Facebook

Facebook is the world’s largest social media platform that allows you to share pretty much anything you can imagine. As the largest platform, Facebook could give you the broadest scope for developing your brand or sharing information about your business. It is my opinion that nearly EVERY business should have a Facebook profile. Your profile page allows you to define who you are and to post text (without character limits), photos, videos, and website links. Ensure that you set up the “About” page and all contact info for your business or brand. Facebook is a great source for sharing content so make your content valuable and shareable. Photos generally provide the greatest shareability but don’t just post something because it’s “cute” – make sure that it is relevant to your brand.

You can join me on Facebook at Jenn’s Trends

LinkedIn

Linked In is the professional networking site that connects you with other professionals around the world. ALL business professionals should be on LinkedIn. Make sure your profile is appropriately public! We want to see your photo, your title, your summary, your current position, and your talents. This site is not for job hunting – it’s for networking! These networks of people will help you develop your brand, share your information, provide you with feedback, provide you with potential business leads, and help generate conversations for you. LinkedIn is a 24/7 virtual networking seminar. Your profile is the most important part. People will likely be searching for you, not necessarily your brand. Make sure that you keep your profile current by reviewing and updating it at least every 6 months. Beyond just your resume of experience, you can include lists of your skills and talents; education and certifications; and lists of projects, websites, or books that you’ve produced. There is also an abundance of groups that you can join to develop your network. Find local groups, industry groups, college groups, and whatever other genres match your goals. Share articles in these groups, comment on other members posts, and get actively involved in these communities. You should also have a business page that others can follow and which will have information specifically related to your business and industry. Postings can be anything you like and should be on a regular schedule as determined by your Social Media strategy.

You can connect with me on LinkedIn via Jenn Herman

Twitter

Twitter is the microblogging site that allows you to share thoughts and information in real time, while restricting you to 280 characters. Each post, called a “tweet”, allows you to share your thoughts with the twitterverse. You can share text, videos, photos, or links. You can also “Re-Tweet” others posts, thereby sharing other valuable information with your followers. Using Twitter will develop your skills of brevity! While there’s no standard for frequency of posts, you should tweet or re-tweet regularly and frequently. Just be careful not to post so many times a day that people drop you for “spamming” their feeds with seemingly needless or redundant information.

You can follow me on Twitter at @jenns_trends

YouTube

YouTube is the video sharing platform, also owned by Google, that provides the largest search engine for videos. Videos are a great way to share information about your brand. Videos can be of any style and variety. Create your own channel where you will upload videos that you create to represent your brand. Do interview style videos and information/webinar style videos to provide valuable content to your followers. Keep videos “real” and engaging. These can be a little more promotional about your brand or product but keep the content light and conversational. You can also include blooper reels or make a blooper video – these show your followers that you’re a “real” person that they can relate to.

You can follow me on YouTube as Jenn’s Trends

Pinterest

Pinterest is the highly visual content sharing site that allows you to “pin” images to boards of interest. Though this site started as a craft and recipe sharing site, it has quickly evolved into one of the best content sharing sites. Everything posted is done so for sharing purposes so make sure it’s visually appealing and link the photos and images back to your site to generate additional traffic. Photos, infographics, images, memes, etc. all make for great Pinterest content. You can also include descriptions of up to 500 characters. Always type your website address in the description! If you’re selling products, you can also type the price (just use the $) and Pinterest will automatically create a price banner across your image.

You can follow me or my boards on Pinterest at jennherman31

WordPress

WordPress is one of the largest blogging platforms, and the standard version is free to use. You can opt to upgrade for additional features. There are other similar blog sites out there but I find WordPress offers the most user-friendly functionality. Blogging sites allow you to create new content on a regular basis and store it for all to see. Your blogs can be text or videos and give you the freedom to type as much as you want – though keeping in mind others may not want to read that much. This allows you to really show the world who you are and your perspectives. All businesses and brands should have a blog, either on their website or on a blogging site. Google searches now incorporate new criteria that look for new, relevant, and frequent content and blogging allows you to keep your site ranking in those Google searches.

 

4 Comments

  1. You missed an up and coming player, Google + and Google Hangout. These platforms are going to be the new “disruptive technology” of the future! Have a virtual conversation, face to face and learn languages, business ideas, or just watch live a birthday party for a child that is a million miles from loved ones. It is going to be huge!

    • Yes, I did skip Google+ on my list. At this point I’m still new to using Google+ efficiently and I didn’t want to list it on my list of favorites if I haven’t yet got the full understanding of its use and application. I do agree, however, that it has the potential be a huge player in the Social Media industry.

      • Though it looks like G+ works since that’s the way I found your blog. You didn’t mention OverBlog too which is growing quite fast inUS after its great success in Europe. Thanks for reading! I.

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