Initiates to the world of social media all inevitably ask the same question: “How do I know which social media sites to use?” Choosing the right set of social sites to promote your business can seem a daunting task if you are unfamiliar to social media. As ever-increasing numbers of social networks add themselves to the mix, it becomes increasingly overwhelming determining which sites to use and to know which will be best for promoting your company.
There are very few businesses that would not benefit from an online social presence. Any business that is not actively engaged in the promotion of their business, products or services online today is truly missing out on opportunities for their company. Often the reluctance to embrace social media is from an emotional reaction based on an inadequate understanding of social media and what it can do to transform their business.
Social media can be thought of as an online equivalent to more traditional promotions and advertising. In the past, the most common mediums used to promote your business were magazine and newspaper advertisements, television commercials, radio adverts and billboards. To engage is specific niche markets you might have placed an ad in a technical journal directly related to your industry.
The modern equivalents of traditional marketing would be in the form of (but not limited to) tweets, articles, blog posts, press releases, viral marketing and video marketing.
In many ways social media has allowed marketers to streamline the advertising process. Niche social sites that are geared specifically towards your industry make it much easier to connect with others in a specific industry.
Although a plethora of social sites abound on the Internet, the main players in the social media world today are considered to be Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+ and YouTube. These are currently the most widely used social sites today and should be considered a staple of any fledgling social marketing campaign.
In Part 2 of "Which Social Sites Should I Use?" we take a look at the top 5 players in the world of social media that you be should be paying attention to and using in 2012.