So, you’ve just started your own social media or digital marketing agency, and now you’re looking for the best ways to build your audience through social media. You know how important it is to grow your business and personal brand in order to attract more potential customers, but you’re not quite sure what the best approach is.
Well, that’s why I’m here to help!
If you’ve ever scrolled through Instagram, you’ve probably seen a number of social media influencers who are using Instagram to build their personal brand. You maybe have even seen a few articles about how big name influencers like the Kardashians are making bank through sponsored content on Instagram.
Even some of the stats around Instagram probably make it seem like a great platform to get started on growing your personal brand or business. After all:
- Instagram is currently the fastest growing social media platform
- It has over 800 million users
- It has 500 million active daily users
However, don’t be fooled by the flash. While celebrity or social influencers who already have huge followings may be doing well with their personal brands on Instagram, it may not be the best choice for your marketing needs.
In this blog, I’m going to go over why Instagram might not be the best for building your personal brand, and explain why it might be best for you to look to other platforms that align better with your marketing strategy.
The first thing you have to understand when choosing which platforms are right for your brand, is knowing how each platform works—what its main purpose is, who its users are, and whether or not these sync up with your goals for your business or brand.
While many small businesses and large brands are on Instagram, that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily the best platform to build a base audience for your personal brand. While it’s great to be on social media, choosing the wrong platform for your brand is both time consuming and ineffective.
When you’re starting to build your personal brand, your first concern should be building an audience that you will be able to convert eventually into customers. You should also be focusing on being able to build an authentic audience and be able to measure your growth.
Unfortunately, Instagram isn’t great for these parameters. It doesn’t convert the best, the audiences aren’t as authentic, and the only way to scale it quickly is by having large accounts shout you out or to join engagement groups.
While engagement groups are good at growing your page and making videos go viral, the targeting is very limited so conversion isn’t as great. You might be able to get a lot of followers on Instagram, but you won’t see any ROI on these followers.
Now, let’s compare Instagram’s capabilities for brand growth with some other popular platforms:
The second most visited webpage in the world
Has over 1.5 billion active monthly users
Over 500 million hours are being watched on YouTube every day
Obviously this means that YouTube has great reach and potential for you to find the right audience. Additionally, video is the most shared form of content online, and video marketing accounts for nearly three-quarters of all internet traffic today. This makes it a much better platform for conversions
YouTube allows you to create high-quality content that’s evergreen, search-friendly, and has a long life span. That means that the work you put into your content on YouTube will go a long way.
This is also a great platform for marketers because it is intent-based, and it is great at aligning video ads with relevant content. This combination is the key to consumer engagement—finding out what users want and showing them similar content that they will also want to engage with.
Facebook has been around much longer than Instagram and therefore has a larger user database than Instagram. Like YouTube, it is giving you a much larger user pool than Instagram where you can reel in your target demo in larger numbers.
Facebook is also great for businesses because it has many features tailored specifically for small businesses and brand. It’s also multi-optional, with lots of variety. You can choose and use whatever feature (groups, events, shops, photos, videos, text, etc.) suits your business needs each time you post content. Things like business hours, events, addresses, and response rates can be found on most business pages. You can also create groups, events, product pages and shops.
However, there are two things that really make Facebook the best for marketing your business or brand:
Consumer Targeting – you can send the right message to a specific audience, as Facebook has options to target by location, language, age, gender and other demographics, and by psychographic behavior. You won’t be wasting your time or money putting content in front of the wrong people.
Demographic – Facebook’s users tend to be from an older generation than Instagram. This means that businesses that use this platform have access to consumers who have higher income and higher spending power. You’ll be speaking to and engaging with people who actually have the means to buy your product or services.
While other platforms such as YouTube, blogs (WordPress), and even podcasts have consumer targeting features built into their platforms and have more variety in demographics than Instagram, Facebook is slightly ahead of the curve in this regard. Not only do they have a ready user-base where blogs and podcasts don’t, but tools like the Facebook Pixel make consumer targeting incredibly simple.
Though blogging doesn’t give you access to a user-base in the same way as the previously mentioned social media platforms, it is still incredibly helpful when it comes to marketing your business or personal brand online.
Marketers who prioritize blogging are 13 times more likely to achieve a positive ROI on their efforts. And it’s easy to see exactly what your return is using a tool like Google Analytics. Google Analytics will measure ROI for a blog. Look for Engagement, Distribution, and Conversions and Sales.
Additionally, with blogs you have the freedom to create content that is targeted to a specific consumer, demographic, etc. Blogs also give you quite a bit of freedom in the kind of content you create, and get be a great way to get visitors into your funnel.
While Instagram is a great platform that keeps growing and adding cool features like IGTV, IG Stories, and filters to remain competitive, it doesn’t offer the same marketing abilities as some other platforms. However, it can be a great platform for connecting with other influencers through the DM feature, and to build awareness of your brand or business.
However, overall, I recommend YouTube, Facebook, blogs, or podcasts to start a personal brand. Instagram is a great way to add fuel to the fire later on, once you’ve established your brand or business to boost your audience, but when it comes to first starting out, look to other platforms to start building your personal brand or business.
If you want to learn more about how to build your personal brand, then check out our new Personal Branding & Influencer Marketing online course!