iPhone with Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter Apps on Screen

Dave Shrein


The Best Social Media Platforms for Business. Choosing What’s Right for You

Choosing the best social media platforms for business is not so much about ‘what is best for business’ but it’s more about, “What’s best for my business?” If you have asked yourself, “Should my business be on Instagram?” this is the article for you…

You can replace Instagram with nearly any social media network…

“Should my business be on Facebook?”

“Should my business be using Pinterest?”

“Should I setup a Twitter account?

“Do we need to be on TikTok?”

It’s exciting to set up your profile for each individual social media account. After that initial excitement wears off (i.e., you’re done signing up) you are now faced with the prospect of having to create content for each platform.

It’s overwhelming and if you aren’t convinced social media will actually do anything for your business it almost seems like it could be a giant waste of time.

If you struggle to be consistent on social media and are wondering if what you’ve done so far has added any value to your online marketing strategy, this article is for you.

One Scenario Where You Must Be Active On Facebook

Not everyone needs to be active on Facebook. Facebook is the most generic of all the mainstream social media applications available today and, thus, why it appeals to the masses. For that same reason, it may not be the type of platform your business can shine on.

However, there is one unique scenario where a business MUST run a Facebook Page: If that business is running Facebook Ads.

Individual Facebook Ads are tied to a unique Facebook Page. When a user sees an ad in their feed, they are able to click on the page associated with the ad and if they land on a page that is a ghost town, it undermines any credibility in your ad.

When you decide to run a Facebook Ad campaign, you need to make sure you’re posting once or twice a week to ensure that if and when someone visits your page from the ad, they are met with a real brand… not a brand that looks like it is setup as a burner profile.

Three Questions to Help You Decide Which Social Networks to Use

Social media should be fun. Of course there will be times where you have a hard time thinking of what to share or you don’t get results after running a specific campaign. But overall it should be something that is enjoyable, connects with your audience, and is a good fit for your workflow.

It just so happens that those are the three criteria you should use to help determine whether or not your business should be on a particular social media network.

Before we dive into this criteria more in depth, it is a good idea to secure your usernames on all mainstream social media networks. Not only does this ensure that you’ll have your brand name should you decide to use a particular network, it will ensure that no one else is able to secure your brand name.

But just because you have the username doesn’t mean you have to be on the network. Let’s decide which ones are right for you.

Do I Enjoy Using This Social Media Network?

When a piece of clothing doesn’t fit you well it doesn’t matter how much you like the pattern or the design, it isn’t going to be enjoyable to wear. You probably have two or three items in your closet that you keep telling yourself you’ll wear but you continue to avoid them because it just isn’t comfortable to wear.

Social media is the same way.

If you don’t enjoy using a network, no matter how you try to convince yourself that this month you’ll post more frequently, you will find yourself continuing to put off creating for that network.

It’s not much fun to feel forced into using a specific social media network, opening up the app day after day only to sit and stare at the screen, trying to think of something to say.

The less you enjoy a specific social media network, the more time you’ll waste trying to conjure up content to share.

Ask yourself the question, “Do I enjoy using this social media network?”

If you enjoy a particular network that’s a good first step to turning the network into a great marketing tool for your business. Personally, I love Twitter — and it’s easy to open up Twitter and start interacting with others.

When you find yourself dreading a particular network, it may be a sign that you should look for somewhere else to invest your time because it’s always going to be a chore to try and be active on a network you don’t like.

Is My Audience On This Social Media Platform?

You must always be aware of who your audience is. Without a clear picture of who your ideal customer is you will not be able to manufacture conversions for your business.

For social media, you want to be using the same networks your audience is using. If they’re present on TikTok, you want to be on TikTok. It just makes sense.

Before you commit to being active on a particular social media network you need to ask your self the question, “Is my audience on this platform?”

What makes this second criteria interesting is that the more your audience reaches out to communicate with you the more enjoyable social media will become. Choosing a network specifically because your audience is there increases the chances that the time you spend on that network will be enjoyable.

Listen to the clip below from The Donut Shop Podcast. Charissa Saindon from my agency, The Blocks Agency, talks about how you can identify who your target audience should be.

The clearer you are regarding your audience, the easier it will be for you to discover where your audience is, not to mention how easy it will become to create content specifically for your audience.

Does This Network Fit In My Workflow?

The last thing you need is distraction. Unfortunately, social media has become a giant distraction that we go to great pains to avoid.

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram are baked into many areas of our lives. They are deeply integrated into our habits and many of the apps and services we check and use regularly.

Some networks fit more naturally within our workflow than others. If you run Facebook Ads, chances are you’re in Facebook a lot every day, making Facebook a better fit for your workflow.

Twitter lends itself to short bits of content on a mobile or desktop device. No matter where you open the website or app, it’s quick and easy to consume.

The question is, “Which social media networks fit within MY workflow?” Which ones do you naturally gravitate towards? Which networks appeal to your business more than others?

To make social media a profitable medium for your online marketing strategy you need to be consistent with what you post, comment, and share.

You’ll post more, comment more frequently, and share more relevant content when the networks you are using are within your zone of productivity and allow you to pivot naturally from thing to thing.

One Network Where I Thrive and One Network Where I Dive

I desperately want to use Instagram to its fullest. I like the network, I like photography, and I like the variety of formats it offers. My problems that I can’t create visual content as quickly as I can create written content.

Twitter is a much better fit for my personality and my creative skill. I can produce videos and I can take great photos, but it takes me much more time to achieve either of those creative outputs than simply drafting a quick written post.

For many, the thought of having to articulate via written word is paralyzing and photo / video content is just easier and more natural.

It just goes to show that no social network is one size fits all.

You Can Overcome Any Limitations of Any Social Network with Strategy and Purpose

The three questions above are a great starting point, especially if you are largely creating your content on your own. Minimizing your responsibility to maximize your impact is a great gift.

But as you grow your business, you’ll need to scale your output and suddenly you’ll find yourself needing or wanting to appear on more social networks.

When you introduce more people into your organization it becomes essential that everyone be on the same page regarding what your goals are as a company. And not just what the goals are, but also how you plan on reaching these goals.

This is where a social media strategy comes into play.

When you build a specific strategy for a specific network, it becomes a lot easier to offload content creation and management to others on your team. Not only will you have more people helping you create content, but these same people can be more strategic about how they involve you in the daily work of the network.

A strategy means you know what you’re going to create and you know when you are going to create it. That purpose becomes a part of what you do rather than distract you from what you’re doing.

A Social Media Exercise for Choosing Your Networks

Choosing the networks you will use for your business social media becomes much easier when you ask yourself the three questions:

  • Do I enjoy this social media network?
  • Is my audience on this network?
  • Does this network fit within my workflow?

As helpful as those are, how do you handle a social network when two answers conflict, such as, “I hate using this social network but my audience is there.”

I have created a very simple exercise for making a final determination for what networks you should use. You’ll notice that some of the social media networks are no longer around (Google Plus, Periscope, and Blab) but the exercise is still relevant.

Grab a piece of paper and take a moment to draw out a chart that resembles the slide below:

Social media for business table example
Use a separate sheet of paper and create a table that mimics the one you see here, placing the social networks you use in the left column

In the left column, list every network that you’ve attempted to use for your business. On the top row place each question in a column:

  • Enjoy Using
  • Audience is Present
  • Fits In My Workflow

Once you’ve created your table, go through and rank each network against each question. For instance, if you’re ranking Instagram, give a 3 if you agree that it “gives you joy” or a 1 if you don’t agree.

You can see my completed table below.

social media for business online platform launch table
You can see individual networks rise to the top when you rank them against the criteria we’ve covered in this article.

Once you’ve gone through and ranked every network against every criteria, highlight the columns that have the highest ranking.

online platform launch slide example
You will see certain networks rise to the top and it is up to you to decide which networks you’re going to use.

The highest ranking networks are the networks you may want to consider using regularly. While I have highlighted four networks, perhaps you only want to use two or three. Maybe, you highlight three networks and none of those three reflect a network that you truly want to use. That’s fine. This is simply another tool to use in order to be intentional about which networks you choose to use for your business.

This simple exercise gives you a visual breakdown of the networks that offer your business the best chance to succeed on social media.

You Should Not Be Using Every Social Platform

Once you have selected the right social media platforms for your brand, you will find there is no shortage of articles, trainings, courses, guides, and checklists that will help you learn how to maximize your impact on those platforms.

By focusing on one to three social media networks you give yourself permission to neglect the other platforms and spend time creating content to share and consuming the content others are sharing.

If you feel a constant pull to become active on other networks, don’t worry, that sensation isn’t unique to you. Anyone who is using social media for business feels a similar pull at different times in their journey. You can continue to say ‘no’ to those networks until you feel the time is right for you and your business!

iPhone with Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter Apps on Screen

Subscribe for More

Welcome to Online Marketing Intro Course Screen

Become the marketing expert you need

You shouldn’t have to hire an expert to market what you do best! My free intro course will give you a simple framework you can use to build a marketing plan — no matter your product or experience.