Many marketers are engaging on too many networks–are you?

Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, blogs and Google+ just to name a few. All I can say is, Toto, we aren’t in 2001 anymore. America is more social today than ever before—as a result marketing has evolved into a social media zoo. Being able to talk to your customers in real-time has changed marketing forever, but there comes a time when enough is enough.

social-media-overloadTwitter
eMarketer has just published an article stating, “22% of web users said they had reviewed a tweet in the past two months.” Don’t get too excited yet. The article goes on to outline that most of these people who are reviewing tweets are also people who are active on Twitter.

Take Away—Is your audience active on Twitter?

Don’t get me wrong, I love Twitter. I am tweeting all the time (@shannonevanssm), and it works for me. But I don’t use it to drive traffic to my site—I use it to connect with fellow marketers and bloggers. It’s a fantastic networking tool, and I couldn’t imagine my life without it. But for the company I work for, it’s not so useful.

Facebook
Facebook is another “must” for many marketers. Getting X amount of likes and engaging with your audience seems like a no brainer. One thing Facebook has going for it that Twitter doesn’t is the number of active users. With over 750 million users, chances are your audience is on Facebook.

Before slapping up your company’s logo and creating a Facebook page, you need to have a plan in place. What is the purpose for your page? Why would people come back to your profile?

Take Away—Plan out your Facebook strategy before creating an account.

Direct Marketing News just reported that ApartmentGuide.com has found value in their Facebook by utilizing their page for newsletter sign ups. “The people that we have had subscribe to our email newsletters from our Facebook page are extremely engaged. Their open rates and click-through rates are much higher than people who sign up through our website,” says Jason Amann, senior marketing manager at Primedia, the company that owns ApartmentGuide.com. “Facebook stands out from other channels of acquisition for email.”
LinkedIn
LinkedIn is great for networking, finding a job and a great resource for your sales team. That said—is it effective for marketers? Social Media Examiner tells us that creating LinkedIn Groups can give you, “roughly 50 to 100 fresh, highly targeted leads every day.” Even if LinkedIn Groups create half of that for your business—it’s worth trying. Social Media Examiner also has a great post on how to do this here.

Take Away—It’s worth creating  a LinkedIn group for lead generation.

Google+
Launching back at the middle of July, Google+ is the new social media network on the scene. Not it’s first attempt at social, Google has to shake its past and created a great new network. Available by invite only (for now), Google+ is banking on the curiosity factor.

How can marketers benefit from Google+? For now, Google isn’t allowing business profiles, but it doesn’t mean they won’t. According to Socialmediadialog, “features for business pages are still in development. Google will start to test these features with selected companies. If you are interested you can apply for the test of business features here. Google already has started to delete profiles which were not connected to real persons.”

SocialMediaDialog goes on to say, “In comparison to Facebook Pages Google+ Pages not only list fans but also employees and management. There will be a functionality to verify business ownership so that fans can be sure that they are really interacting with the original.”

If this is true, it seems Google+ pages might be the love child between LinkedIn and Facebook. Not only being able to connect with your clients, but also connect with employees of a company.

Take Away—Googl+ could be very beneficial for business owners.

Now What?
With all of these options, what do marketers do? Engage on 4+ networks daily? The answer is maybe. One thing that many online marketers have been focusing on is messaging. Although Twitter clients like Tweetdeck and Hootsuite allow you to post one message across Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, it doesn’t mean you should.

For example, one powerful tool on Twitter is hash tags. Using hash tags can amplify your tweet, and expose your brand to people who may not be following you yet. Facebook however doesn’t use this technique. If your hash tags post on your Facebook Page, it will look out of place. Same with LinkedIn.

Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ also allow more characters than Twitter in their updates. You can elaborate more in a Google+ post than Twitter, so leave lengthier messaging on Google+.

The best any of us marketers can do is find our audience, and engage with them accordingly. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Google+ is new, but it doesn’t your audience is there (especially if you target the tech industry). How are you handling social? Let us know in the comments below.

Image Credit: SocMedSean