What goes around comes around, right? Who would have thought that in the second decade of the 2000's, we'd be loving our platforms again the way we did in the 70's?
While platforms may be a part of the fashion scene again, we have another type platform that is more important in terms of our social media marketing - a "platform" is "a type of software or technology that enables users to build, integrate or facilitate community, interaction and user-generated content." (according to www.wikianswers.com) While each of us has our favorites, choosing the platforms that will best reach your consumer should be your ultimate goal. Remember creating your social media plan? Refer to it to guide you through your decisions.
Based on data and personal experience, the following platforms are must haves:
- LinkedIn - Used primarily for professional interaction. Connect and communicate with people in your industry, and share ideas. This is also a great platform for finding new talent when you need to add to your existing team. On Jan 5, 2013, LinkedIn announced that is has reached the 200 million member mark. This study by Lab42 gives an interesting infographic on how those members are interacting with the site.
- Twitter - Twitter is misunderstood by many who think it is simply 140 characters worth of "what's going o right now." Twitter gives business the ability to send information out to followers that takes little time, but can produce great results. It's also a way for your customers to connect with you - more than 175 million tweets are sent daily, and 56% of customers tweets to companies are being ignored.
- Facebook - If you are trying to get your business's name in front of consumers, Facebook is the place to be! 80% of consumers prefer to connect with brands through Facebook over other social networking sites.
- YouTube - Think people like videos? With one hour of video uploaded to YouTube every second, you'd better believe it! Check out this website, www.onehourpersecond.com, for perspective (just make sure your volume is not up to high!), grab your video camera and start filming! Create your own channel where you can posts videos of events going on at your facility, classes that you may be running, and tips to share with your customers. This allows engagement with your customers both inside and outside your walls, strengthening their loyalty and trust in your brand.
There are other platforms, too, that can be used based on your goals. Some of the most widely used are:
While these sites have gained popularity and are very well-known, there are new site being created all the time. To keep up to date with the newest social media news, visit www.mashable.com.
What platforms is your business currently using, and how effective have your efforts been? Please let me, Kelli Hatton, know your thoughts and experiences!
Kelli Hatton is an active fitness professional, consultant and speaker with expertise in employee development, business development, marketing and management. As a business development professional and consultant, she provides management, sales, marketing and customer service training to organizations looking to increase their productivity. She also leads the Business Development team for Fitmarc, the South Central US Distributor for Les Mills Group Fitness systems. To learn more, contact Kelli today.