Nearly half the world has internet access, which provides a gateway for small businesses to now enter a global market. It is more important than ever before that businesses not only have a digital identity, but one that is present and relevant. In many cases, the digital identity will impact the success and longevity of a business. Here are five tips to consider when establishing your digital identity or enhancing your presence via social media platforms.
1. Research Platforms
Research the platform(s) you are considering, and the primary audience engaged with the platform. User demographics can be easily found for notable platforms. Due diligence in understanding the nuances of each platform is integral to your success. Do not simply learn about the demographics, you should also learn about the common trends and behaviors of the users. How often do users login daily versus monthly or weekly? How long does the average user stay logged in during a single sign-in? When using the platform, what features of the platform are used most? Are users more drawn to posts, updates, videos, or graphics? The answers to those questions and others, will assist in determining when a platform is appropriate for your business or personal brand, as well as how you can use the platform to its full potential.
Once a platform is chosen, exploring analytics options to track who and how people are engaging with you or your business is highly recommended. Many platforms will provide a range of analytics for free to all users, and have options to enhance the type and amount of information tracked. Free analytics, provided by the platform are robust in the information provided to users.
2. Know Your Purpose
While the platform may be a current trendy option, that cannot not be the sole purpose for a business to utilize the application. Some businesses will use certain platforms to be strictly informational and serve as one-way communication to their consumers, like utility companies.
In most scenarios it is in the best interest not to, but some businesses may choose to link their social media accounts, so that the same post will appear on multiple platforms. It sounds good in theory, but as you learned in step one, different platforms have varying demographics and behaviors. The deliverable needs to be presented in a way that resonates with users and aligns with the trends or behaviors of the platform in use. The appearance of being present and in the moment, is integral to the establishment of your digital identity. Often, viewers can see if a post was made from another platform and will choose to disengage with the content presented.