Choose Your Social Networks Wisely (Or Waste Money!)

Choose Your Social Networks Wisely (Or Waste Money!)

March 26th, 2013

Finding new social channels for your brand can be hit or miss-- learn from these three social media platforms whose bubbles are bursting. Pick the right channel immediately after its launch could mean you hit the jackpot: achieve early success, have your case study featured on all kinds of media outlets, attract more followers/fans/friends from all the free PR and have social media talents knocking on your door for a job. Or you could pick a channel that never gets off the ground or after it's peaked, and it could be you and the crickets at your next social media ROI analysis meeting.

 

Though that's a risk of the industry, consider your social media moves carefully with these three cautionary tales.
 
1. Groupon. Consumers and deal seekers loved (and still love) Groupon, but the small businesses Groupon went after often couldn't afford these deals, since many businesses didn't retain those one-time, deal-redeeming customers and forfeited much of their profit in the process.
 
2. Pinterest.  For a time, it too was the darling of social media news and power users, and it quickly found its way into the marketing mix for companies that use imagery to sell. But once you've created a variety of pinboards of places you'll never see and things you'll never own, just how frequently are you logging on to Pinterest? And without the critical mass of audience, how much time should a marketer put into building out their Pinterest channel?
 
3. Foursquare. Initially, there was a huge novelty in its mainstay check-in feature, and as popularity among local businesses looking to raise their visibility and cool factor grew, so did Foursquare's place in social media plans. These days, however, you can check-in from almost any social media platform, making Foursquare obsolete.
 
If you're on these networks or one with a similar story, you don't necessarily need to abandon ship, but consider your rationale for continuing to support your accounts. If these platforms truly provide you with value-- real revenues, audience engagement or even business intelligence--by all means, keep up the great work. On the other hand, if all they really are at this point is a resource drain, cut your losses now and move on.

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