Social Media is undoubtedly one of the best ways to make an impression online, as we have come through the medium’s developmental years and into a more crowded marketplace and a huge increase in users both of digital natives and those new to it, messaging and picking your battles has become a challenge that many are still confused about.

There’s real value in choosing what to focus on, after all, floundering and trying to reach everyone all of the time is simply not achievable. More than ever, we must ask ourselves where our audience sits and what will be most effective. Many will think simply that to not be on certain platforms is shooting yourself in the foot. For example, no Twitter page for your business? Are you mad? Well yes and no. Is Twitter the best place to push your message? Amongst the plethora of memes, political arguments and the latest celebrity news isn’t the best place for many to be pushing out a message, especially if you want to be seen. Could that energy be better used on LinkedIn, where an audience is looking at business-related content? If your business is consumer-led, is Instagram with its image and video-based bias a more suitable platform? Could TikTok be the best place for your expert opinions or advice? There’s a lot to be said for research, after all, a mountaineer doesn’t study the surrounding countryside when planning a route to the top of the mountain, they are aware of what exists, but their focus is a route or two to the summit and doing it well. 

At the end of the day, your time is valuable. It’s important to be vigilant about which channels you post on, and ensuring you’re spending your time on channels you know will reap the rewards. ROI is therefore incredibly important, wasting time on platforms that offer nothing back after a proven trial seems short-sighted.

For example, at Distract, we know that having a presence on Linkedin allows us to relate to and reach other like-minded business people who are much more likely to connect with us than if we were an ecommerce brand connecting with our audience through humouring twitter threads. Our Twitter presence is minimal, the occasional photo or message about general matters will sometimes materialise, but our focus is on where our contemporaries and clients are. Lean and compact is the way to go, trying to be all things to all people at all times is impossible or at best, exhausting and somewhat diverting from more important matters.

Your tone of voice also matters. A serious service business? Match that tone for your communications. Adopting a jokey, ironic tone like many consumer brands do might not work if you’re talking about taxes, the law or life insurance. Similarly, using that tone across all of your channels is also important, don’t go overly serious on LinkedIn to poking fun on Twitter for example, it can really confuse your audience.

The two pillars here to remember are to pick the right platform for where your audience is and to adopt consistency across the ones you do. How you apply your messaging is up to you, but it’s probably worth remembering that engagement comes from your ability to make it easy for your audience to interact. Use photos, videos, ask leading questions and overall, be creative. After all, there’s no joy in boring, repetitive content output. It pays to remember the ‘social’ aspect of social media.