You’re probably already on social media for your business in some form. Whether that just means you’ve claimed your company’s Facebook page, or you’re posting updates several times a day, businesses have come to realize how valuable and important social media marketing is, and they’re working hard to engage their audience. Social media marketing can help you build an audience, increase the reach of your content, and even improve your ranks in search engines, but there’s a fundamental limitation facing most modern social marketers.
The vast majority of businesses can’t move past the holy trinity of social platforms: Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These platforms are incredibly popular, which makes them a perfect target for businesses looking to make a big impact. But the reality is that social media is a huge world, and it’s constantly growing with new platforms and new audiences. If you find yourself struggling to make an impact with the more traditional social media platforms, or if you’re looking for new outlets for your content, it might be time to consider one of these off-the-beaten path social platforms as a new channel for your social marketing campaign:
Visual media platforms are rising in popularity as users grow tired of wading through text for updates and begin preferring images and videos. One of the biggest (and still fastest-growing) visual platforms around today is Instagram, with more than 300 million monthly active users. Because Instagram is largely a personal platform used for showcasing selfies and other self-centered photographs, many businesses have written it off as a potential marketing channel. However, businesses that get involved on Instagram can appeal more visually to an audience that hungers for more visual material. Play to Instagram’s strengths by showing your brand’s more personal side—pictures of your team members and of your office could work wonders in improving the ethos of your brand.
Pheed is a platform that works similar to Instagram, but it’s newer on the market and has yet to reach as substantial a user base. Still, Pheed holds a lot of advantages, and if your strategy is implemented properly, it can be valuable for your campaign. Pheed is a visual-based platform, allowing users to share their photos, videos, and live broadcasts of whatever they happen to be doing at the time. Pheed also offers special features for businesses, with the option to sell certain videos and content on a pay-per-view basis. If you’re looking to make a little bit of extra direct money in addition to building your user base, you can sell seminars or lessons for an extra fee.
Tumblr is a powerhouse on the web, and a platform you’ve undoubtedly already heard of. However, you probably haven’t considered it as part of your social marketing strategy. That’s because Tumblr is targeted toward independent artists and thinkers, who are empowered to create their own micro-blogs. Since your company already has a blog, and since you can already syndicate your material through more conventional social channels, you might have overlooked some of Tumblr’s advantages. The Tumblr user base is very dedicated, and many of them rarely venture out into other platforms. It’s a new outlet for you to publish and gain visibility for your material, and thanks to Tumblr’s follow system, it’s easy to make new connections and build an audience. There are nearly 225 million blogs on Tumblr already—and that’s a lot of missed opportunities if you aren’t up for taking them.
Almost everyone has heard of SnapChat, but the app’s reputation isn’t one that most marketers find favorable. Used mostly as a means of sending confidential or temporary pictures from one person to another, SnapChat is a personal and sometimes intimate platform that doesn’t seem to leave much room for marketers to communicate a message to the masses. However, with 400 million snaps sent per day by 26 million active United States users, there is a massive opportunity at stake. If you can reduce your messaging to the bare minimum, giving your users a short burst of great content or a memorable tagline, you can win them over instantly without bogging them down with repetitive updates. It will take you a long time to build an audience of users, but it can help you forge more personal connection with the users you do find.
Bubblews is a new type of content platform with a revolutionary new structure; rather than posting any of their own content or leeching off the content of others, Bubblews shares all its ad revenue with its most popular contributors. Since the current readership of Bubblews is still developing, you might struggle to find an initial audience. However, as the platform becomes more popular, Bubblews could serve as a high-authority channel for all your offsite marketing work—and if your content is appreciated by your readers, you could make a little extra money on the side. Follow the same rules you would for content anywhere else; be original, be informative, be entertaining, and make your content as shareable as possible.
Success in social media is at least partially attributable to diversity. You need to vary the types of posts you make, the types of individuals with whom you interact, and of course, the types of platforms you use as the foundation for your campaign. Remember, not all of these platforms will be useful to all businesses, but they are all oft-overlooked options that are worth your consideration. As you review your current strategy and look for key areas of potential improvement, try thinking outside the box and finding new ways to communicate using channels that already exist.