How to choose the right social media platform

Over half the population uses social media, so it goes without saying that maintaining a strong presence online is important. But retailers are often unclear about which channel is best suited to their offer and customers.

Daniel Nolan, managing director of digital marketing agency theEword, says: “The social media channel that is best for you depends almost entirely on your product and which platform your customers are on.

“Whichever social media platform a retailer uses, activity must be regular and content should always provide entertainment and valuable help.”

The three biggest social media platforms – Twitter, Instagram and Facebook – all have different benefits.

Twitter can be great for customer service. While it does require that retailers reply to every query, providing good service is likely to build trust between retailers and their target market, resulting in repeat custom.

Facebook may be the most populated platform but this does not mean it is the best channel for retailers.

“Despite its efforts to simplify, there is still a level of complexity to effective Facebook management,” says Nolan.

Instagram is more simple, but also presents its own challenges.

“The photo-sharing platform can engage shoppers effectively, but retailers need to strategically combine explicit promotion and aspirational scenes,” says Nolan.

Each platform appeals to different audiences. It could be best for retailers to experiment with posts on the three big channels to ensure their social media presence complements their offer and improves customer experience.”