Now, more than ever, we have a wide variety of websites from which to choose when we’re looking to virtually connect with our online friends and potential clients and/or customers: Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are just a few of the most well-known ones, in addition to Pinterest and Tumblr and many others.
Say, however, that you only want to engage with one of these sites.
How do you choose that perfect website that represents your needs and interests?
First, it’s important to determine your reasons for using social media.
These are as varied as the users of social media themselves, but there are a few major reasons for hopping on that online train.
According to a 2013 survey by OnePoll, these are the top 10:
- Social interaction
- Information seeking
- Passing time
- Expression of opinions
- Things to talk about
- Sharing information
- Knowing about others
Let’s look at a few of the most popular sites to determine which one may best serve your purposes.
First off, Facebook. Mark Zuckerberg’s creation has pulled more than a billion users over the years, and with good reason: this addictive site hits many of the buttons that lead to fulfilling social interaction. If you’re looking to build your personal brand, this could be a great way to do it as it allows you to express yourself, your feelings and your hobbies and interests with just a few clicks. You can also set up a professional Facebook page, but if you do, use caution. This is a highly personal social-media network and users often don’t take kindly to being pegged as potential clients rather than potential friends.
If you’re looking for a more straight-up professional network, LinkedIn may be the destination for you. This networking site offers vestiges of personal use on the part of its members, but is predominantly focused on building, maintaining and advancing careers. If you’re looking to increase your circle of business contacts and expand your professional horizons, this could be a very good place for you to go.
Twitter is a great site to expand your sphere. It’s also a good site for someone who wants to post more frequently than once a day, since Twitter feeds seem to be more amenable to that than Facebook. Twitter is also a good way to make online announcements – for example, owners of food trucks often use the site to tell customers where they’ll be on any given day.
Pinterest is a highly personal site that can also be used for business. You’ll find resources to get started at the Pinterest Business Centre. Make sure to research what your ideal client is pinning, so you know what best to put up! As you’re pinning, be sure to check the pin’s source so that you can give credit where credit is due.
Finally, Tumblr offers microblogging as well as social media opportunities, which is a good resource if you’re trying to expand either your personal or professional brands. Here you can post content to attract eyeballs – and hopefully business as well. As with any other social media platform, make sure what you’re posting is interesting and relevant to the people with whom you want to do business.
Social media can be a gold mine for personal and professional goals. Just make sure you use it mindfully!
What are your thoughts? Leave me a comment below or on my Facebook Page!