Speak to your audience where they are the most
Before we dive into the platforms themselves, the first question to ask is “Where is my customer?”. All platforms have potential value but distributing content for your audience in the wrong place isn’t going to get you very far.
Sandy tells us that “Brands think they need to be everywhere to cut through the noise of social platforms. They want to be on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn ASAP. My number one tip is to choose where you want to be based on where your ideal audience hangs out, don’t be everywhere because you just can’t keep up unless you have a big team behind you.”
If you’re unsure which platform your audience spends the most time on, Sandy has 3 suggestions on where to start. Let’s take a look!
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The up and comer: Pinterest
Pinterest is an under-utilized space that’s making game-changing moves for eCommerce stores. Their new business profiles offer excellent integrations and are already compatible with Shopify – and they’re even introducing checkout options on Pinterest.
Essentially, businesses can create a Pinterest storefront that’s dynamically linked to your eCommerce store, meaning your information is updated between your eCommerce store and your Pinterest.
I’m super passionate about this and I advise everybody to investigate the opportunity. It doesn’t take as much effort as Instagram or TikTok because both need frequent posting and exciting content. Pinterest takes less time and much less effort.
The old faithful: Instagram
While some of the advertising opportunities around Instagram have become redundant, the platform still plays a vital role in the world of social media. The reason is simple, most people are still there. How often have you been interested in a product and gone straight to Instagram to look at pictures, info, and comments? Most customers do this, and if your business doesn’t at least have a basic page with your products, you may lose the sale.
The trendy: TikTok
If you want to go a step further and you’re ready to invest the effort, TikTok is your next best bet. It’s particularly relevant if you’re offering direct-to-consumer products from an e-commerce store. We’ve all seen those viral TikToks where a lipstick trend goes viral and all of a sudden it’s all you see on your feed. The platform is not just for entertainment, although your strategy with TikTok should be to entertain.
Research and test the market
I believe these are the top platforms for e-commerce brands, particularly those in the fashion, beauty, and food industries. They are a great way to focus your time and start somewhere. But, if you sell something very specific and very niche, these platforms might not reach your audience. If your audience is on Twitter or LinkedIn, switch up your strategy and start there.
Investigating and testing the market really is the best place to start if you’re unsure which platform is right for you. Look at your competitors, where are they thriving? Ask your loyal customers, where are they the most active. And give it a go. Post across a few platforms, see the response, and refine your strategy based on the results.