There is currently a plethora of social media platforms currently out these, it’s mind-blowing! From networking, to hooking a spouse, writing blogs to comparing businesses, the list is exhaustive! I have worked with several small businesses and start-ups who want to step into the social media arena, but are unsure which one they need to target and any benefits to their business and growth plans.

I have put together a list of the big 6 platforms which your company should have a presence on. This in no way means that you need to rush out today and sign up to every single one on this list! The ideal is to stick to around 3 which are most appropriate to your business and build a strategy around those. Remember you need to concentrate on the quality of information you out into those platforms. The better the quality, the greater chance of your message reaching as much of your desired audience as possible. Also, remember to engage with your audience, you are not a robot! Show your human side.

Facebook – Facebook is one of the biggest players in the social media game, with 59% of users accessing it two or more times a day, this will spread your message far and wide! It gives you a platform to speak with, and directly interact with your audience. You can also set up Facebook Ads and target a specific demographic giving you more targeted marketing. With the fancy call to action buttons you can include on an ad, there are so many ways you can direct your audience to interact and engage with it.

Twitter – Twitter is a fast-moving, information sharing news-breaking tool. In 140 characters you can deliver a message or thought and find others who share the same interests as you. To get the most out of Twitter it is recommended that you Tweet several times a day, include images or gifs and use hashtags. You can find out more about getting the best out of Twitter here.

Instagram – Get your lights and filters ready! Instagram is an image based platform and is great for businesses to showcase products. Handy if you are a florist or photographer! This platform is mobile based, so cannot be used on a desktop and like Twitter (more so even!), you can use hashtags to increase your visibility. Consumers place high value upon images, so this is a great virtual shop window.

Pinterest – This is another image based platform but differs from Instagram as users are able to create boards and pin their favourite images, which can be used for inspiration or collecting information. Like Facebook and Twitter, Pinterest can drive the majority of referral traffic back to websites. To stay relevant in a Pinterest search you would need to ensure that your images are worthy enough to be pinned and re-pinned by users. For the more technical amongst us, Pinterest can even be used as an SEO tool! Amazing!

LinkedIn – This is used for B2B networking, lead generations, research business ideas and building business connections. Although LinkedIn does not drive the most amount of traffic to your website, it does send the more engaged traffic towards you as chances are, someone who has already looked at your LinkedIn bio are already engaged as they understand what your business is about.

Google + – If you want to hone your influencer skills, this is the platform for you! Google + is brilliant at driving traffic to your website. If you have a brilliant blog which you want to promote, you can upload it to Google + and link to content on your website. To get the very best out of it, don’t forget to utilize SEO and keywords.

This is just a small sample of the platforms currently in our domain and these are constantly evolving. There is a platform available for every kind of business, and paired with a great strategy, this can in turn increase your reach to the audience that matters most to you.

This article originally appeared on Light Tree Media and has been republished with permission.