Social media has created an entire new way for people to run their businesses. With social media comes a much broader potential audience and a much more personal connection with them. These tools give you the ability to communicate with your audience on a day-to-day basis, and the best part is it’s a two-way street; consumers get to feel as if they know you on a more personal level, therein building their trust. And you also have the opportunity to get to know them personally. Of course, knowing how to communicate with your audience is the key. Because let’s face it – you could post on all of your social media platforms all day, but if you’re not receiving any feedback (be it in the form of a comment, like, share, etc.), your time and efforts are being wasted.

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So where do I start?
The first step in figuring out how to best communicate with your target audience is to find your brand’s “voice,” or the tone that’s associated with it. Giving your brand a voice is one of the best ways to make yourself standout and be seen as a figure of authority. When creating your voice, consider the following questions:

1. What is my company’s role in its industry?
2. What emotion does my brand ideally want to invoke from its audience?
3. What sort of content will I most consistently be providing?

Once you’ve answered these 3 questions, now you can move onto deciding which platforms will be most beneficial to use regularly. One piece of advice: depth is greater than width. Meaning, you’re better off being very strong in a select few social media platforms than you are stressing to manage every single platform.

To figure out which platforms are your best fit, figure out what you’re main objective in using social media is. Do you want to network and get your name out there to as many people as possible? Or do you want to gain increased credibility and establish your expertise? If networking is the biggest end goal, channels such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest may be of highest importance to you. If establishing expertise is most important, then platforms like YouTube, blogging and SlideShare are more likely to give you that exposure.

It’s always wise to start with the platform that you believe is most important and really drill into it every day in order to gain a following. Giving yourself the time to focus solely on that one platform for a while will allow you to develop a deep interpersonal relationship with your target audience, and you can then expand out from here. Conquer your industry, one channel at a time.

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