How to choose the right social media channels for your corporate communication strategy

Social media channels blog blackWith so many social media channels to choose from, deciding which are right for you and your company can often be a challenge.

 Most people know and have a fairly good grasp of the main platforms used by companies for corporate communications: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. But, what about all those other channels, with growing user bases; do they have a role in the corporate space? Where do Instagram and Pinterest fit into how you tell your corporate story? And are you sure you’re up to date on the latest changes to those long-established, main channels?

 From Intel to GE, many companies are harnessing the power of channels such as Instagram and Pinterest to offer behind-the-scenes insights into the organisations, how they operate, and the people who make them what they are. Those companies that are trailblazers in the social space are doing this while maximising their presence across the main channels too.

 However, before you get over-excited and dive into signing up for every channel under the sun, start by reading our top tips for great social media:

 #1 Know your objectives

Knowing what you want to achieve with social media is key. What you want to say and who you want to say it to should inform which platforms you use. Some upfront strategic thinking is vital to ensure you don’t just sign up for every platform going and spread yourself too thin: it’s much better to be hot on three platforms than mediocre on five. Take the time to do the research: where are your audience? What do your peers do? What content do you have and where will it work? Having this knowledge will mean your social strategy is sustainable in the long run.

 #2 Get the tone right

Specific social channels are great for showing off different aspects of a company. LinkedIn is ideal for thought leadership and informative messages, with Twitter great for regular updates and interacting with a variety of stakeholders. Facebook is perfect for targeted careers messaging and brand building, and with no limit to the number of characters, photos or videos you can cater to all audiences. Options to embed different content types – presentations via SlideShare on LinkedIn, games and interactive elements on Facebook, should be used to their full potential.

 #3 Be flexible

Things change and social media is a notoriously fickle world, so you need to be adaptable and aware of what is going on. If you want to be heard on social, you first need to listen. Changing trends in hashtags is an obvious example of this. The Intel Instagram account regularly uses hashtags like #innovation and #makers, helping them tap into wider conversation circles and reach a larger audience.

 On that last point, here’s a great example. Tesco opts for a light-hearted, often cheeky mood on its picked Twitter feed. When news was released by Meek Mill that US-based rapper Drake doesn’t write his own lyrics, Tesco came in with their own funny take on the story:

Meek Mill Meek Mill v TescoThe result? Not only did Tesco show it had its finger on the pulse of conversation, it likely informed a number of people’s lunch decisions that day as well!

 As social networks continue to mature and evolve, companies must remain informed and flexible in order to truly leverage the power of communications and see a powerful social ROI.

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