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13 June  2010 ~

CFOStrategistPrior to one of his recent social media presentations, Chris spent time talking one-on-one with some business owners.  The questions they all seemed to have was, “which social media sites should my business consider participating on”?  So what’s the answer, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn or something else?

While everyone has heard of Facebook, and 400+ million people globally use it, for many businesses, it may not be the most effective site for them to participate on.  Today’s new media is changing the way we communicate with our target audience.   Don’t focus on how well known any site is.  When it comes to choosing which sites to participate on, the traditional maxim still stands – you need to be where your target audience is.

Quick Quiz… If you were in the business of selling cup cakes, where would you generate the most attention, (a) in a group talking about social topics like; their family, going to restaurants, and other personal interests or (b) in a group discussing baking?  The target audience is more likely to be found in larger numbers and with more of a direct interest in choice “B”.  Apply this concept to social media and it works the same way

Participate Where Your Target Audience Is

Your business should participate where your business can most effectively interact with your target audience.  If you sell directly to a consumer, sites like Twitter or Facebook can more effectively communicate for you with this audience than most other sites.  Conversely, if you sell financial systems to Fortune 100 clients, LinkedIn could be a powerful lead generation tool for you. 

The next question is naturally “how do businesses identify which sites their customers/audience are on”?  The answer is quite simple – ask them.  Leverage natural communication points with them to see where they are on social media. 

Some Ideas to Help You

To help you figure out which sites to participate on, here are some suggested things to try and/or think about:

  1. Ask your customers and prospects – “where are you online”? This can range from asking them during the checkout process or through the use of comment cards or by sending out a very simple 3-4 questions survey.
  2. Ask yourself:
    1.  “Do I sell directly to a consumer”?  If so, Facebook and  Twitter could be good places to participate on
    2. “Do I sell to other businesses”? Then LinkedIn, Blogging and SlideShare might be sites to investigate further
  3. Determine where your competition already participates?  Not sure? Then run a search on them across the various main social media sites.  Check out how they interact and assess whether you should be interacting at that particular site too.

 Clearly, a lot more to add here, so now its your turn… what does your business do?


About the CFO Strategist
Chris is very proud to add Best Selling author to his resume.  The book he co-authored, 42 Rules for 24 Hour Success on LinkedIn reached best seller status on Amazon, hitting a high of #68 across all of Amazon! Recently the book was included in the “Top 100 Best Social Media Books, Ever” list at #77

To purchase the book, please go to or to Amazon.

To learn more about how to effectively use LinkedIn – we offer a free eCourse at

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