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Success comes when you carefully weigh your options against the corporate objectives of your firm.

SOCIAL MEDIA can be a highly effective marketing and PR tool. Yes, even for an accounting firm. Talk to the marketing experts and you’ll learn about all kinds of new strategies that have emerged to help service firms reach their target audiences and connect with media online, on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, and LinkedIn. But which ones are best for your firm? Consider the following.

Your Corporate Objectives.

Does the platform complement your corporate objectives? As with any change in the direction of your business, success comes when you carefully weigh your options against the corporate objectives of your firm. This means, of course, that you need a solid grasp on your firm’s immediate and long-term objectives. You need to know what it is you do well, what sets you apart, and who your audience is, in order to know where to find them.

Audience Engagement.

Where is your target audience most likely to engage with you? LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, and blogging are just a few of the most popular social media platforms and tools you can choose from to engage new and existing customers. Chances are your target audience will be using and will want to engage on one or more of these platforms, but which ones? Focus on what types of information they are looking for rather than on what you want to say.

 

Before launching a new platform, I recommend you do some research. Investigate which platforms your direct competitors are using to get a better understanding of what is working for others in your area of expertise. You may be able to learn from their successes or failures before you invest time and energy into a new space, such as a company blog or YouTube marketing strategy.

Social Media Management.

Do you have the time to professionally manage the platform? Remember, social media is about sharing information. If you’re entering a new space, you need to be prepared to offer valuable industry information and to engage in conversations with others in your industry and complementary industries, in addition to sharing your company information. To do this well requires time and creative strategy. Before you delve into it, develop a plan and make sure you have the resources to execute your plan. If your objective is to start a corporate blog, for example, put together a content document and strategy outlining topics for six months in advance, and details for how you’ll promote the blog, including partners you could potentially cross promote and guest bloggers you may wish to feature.

 

If you don’t have time to do it yourself, can you afford to hire an agency or consultant to manage the social media platform on your behalf? And, once you get rolling, it’s important to regularly measure your growth and success to make sure it’s worth your efforts.

 

Each of the most popular social media platforms is tailored toward different needs, creating diverse marketing opportunities for your firm. You need to first understand your corporate and marketing goals (target audience, offering, and objectives) before you choose the platform that will best meet your needs.

 

Telpay

About The Author

Mark Wardell is president of Wardell Professional Development Inc., an advisory group specializing in growth management for owner-managed companies.