Creating your own business is a tiring process. Countless late nights, untold hours of unpaid work, constant doubt over whether your core ideas are sound; these are all things any budding entrepreneur will be familiar with.
One way of ratifying the core ideas is by sharing them with the general public. Thankfully, groups of people as a whole have almost no inhibitions, and will quite happily tear apart your brainchild piece by painful piece. The idea is that once they are finished tearing your hopes and dreams to shreds, a sound business idea will be left. Another good way of using the merciless mob is to float branding and logo design ideas on the internet. They will give you honest feedback (once you weed out the trolls), hopefully leaving you with a useful set of designs.
To do this, a start-up must have two things. One, a starting point or idea. This is fairly self-explanatory. You cannot start a business without an idea for a business.
The second is a set of outreach channels. Today, this means a suite of social media accounts. Everyone is familiar with the Big Three – Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – but they are not the only options available to budding billionaires. In this article, we’re going to take a look at how to utilise not only the key players in social media, but also some of their smaller cousins.
The Big Three and Their Logo Design
We all know Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. We all also know their logos. They are a prime example of simple information conveyance. Each of the business logos are clean, original, and recognizable, and as such any start-up should look to the example they set with regard to company branding.
With that in mind, we’ll have a look at how to use these well-known brands. Each of the Big Three fulfills a slightly different role in social media marketing.
- Facebook – The channel with the largest outreach pool, Facebook can be used to target large, specific demographics through the Facebook ad campaigns. The customization available throughout the process means that your campaign will reach the intended targets. A must for businesses seeking new customers, the power of Facebook is nothing to be sneezed at.
- Twitter – The social media channel credited with the rise of “microjournalism”, Twitter is a news site, networking platform, and modern-day call centre rolled into one. Famed for the rapidity of news propagation, Twitter can be used to spread information quickly and succinctly. It also doubles as many companies means of point of contact for customer services. Due to the ease and visibility of a Tweet, many consumers have turned to it to avoid lengthy contact processes, or just being ignored entirely.
- Instagram – Instagram is great for building brand image. Focused around photography, Instagram allows users to see an individual or companies “grid” (Instagram posts are previewed as a selection of thumbnails arrayed in a grid layout). The idea here is to portray the character and idea behind a brand. Being able to present a company not only as a for-profit idea but also as a way of life is an incredible form of modern marketing.
The Other Social Media Channels
- LinkedIn – Although well known within its own demographic, LinkedIn rarely gets used to its full potential. Widely used as an online, interactive CV, LinkedIn also allows you to publish articles on your profile’s platform. These articles are publicly available, and if you build up a good network of connections, people in relevant industries may notice the content and get in touch. This makes it a good platform to attract free expert opinion on an idea, be it for a product, service, logo design, or anything else.
- Snapchat – A rapidly growing social media platform, Snapchat started off as simply a temporary photo messaging service. Now it has grown to include videos, time lined stories, event steams, and news streams. The marketing side of things are geographically targeted filters and streams. This means that a company can create its own channel within a channel, available to anyone in the area. This is handy for localised services or product launches. With Snapchat reaching 42% of 18 – 35 year olds daily in the US, this channel is not to be overlooked, especially for products and services targeted at the younger demographics.
- Kickstarter (and other crowdfunding site) – While not strictly social media channels, the crowdfunding sites allow start-ups to generate review from future sales. It can also simply garner money from interest in the idea, without even having to promise a product in return for funding. Not like traditional fundraising, a good crowdfunding campaign has the potential to go viral, shooting a start-up past the initial struggle and straight into positive profit margins.
- Pinterest – The fastest growing social media channel, Pinterest is a blog-cum-online marketplace. Centred around physical products, this is a great place to test products on a small scale before aiming for large scale production and distribution.
The Most Important Piece of Information
Whether it’s to a business focusing on professional logo design, or producing slippers for dogs, any business using social media channels must start with a social media strategy before it begins its social media campaigns. This means identifying key demographics, developing high quality content, building networks with relevant industry individuals and creating a timeline.
If a company starts social media interaction with a strategy in place, it can easily lose its way and waste a vast amount of time and energy. It is also wise to remember to be careful with brand representation through social media. While larger brands and franchises can get away with a poor customer service experience here and there, smaller businesses rely heavily on repeat business and word of mouth in a smaller customer pool. One unhappy customer has far more weight at that level, so be careful.