As an author, I want to make an impact on the most people possible. To do that I have to connect with people on platforms where my audience likes to communicate, connect, consume, and create content.
The puzzle I am trying to solve is where to focus my time and energy instead of trying to excel on each platform at the same time.
Here’s a quick thought exercise. I’ll use Instagram as an example.
Is the platform growing in usage and engagement particularly among your audience?
Instagram: Based on recent students and current trends, it appears that Instagram is growing faster than any other platform. It is especially popular among younger audiences (teen to early thirties).
How likely will your content be seen by your audience without paying for advertising?
Are ads underpriced on the platform?
Instagram: The algorithm favors content from people/brands users engage with the most. As long as you created content that gets people to like and comment, you will appear higher. Ads are newer on the platform and probably underpriced at this point.
(Note: The reality is that when you use a social media platform or any media platform other than your own, you will be required to pay to increase your exposure to new and even current audience members.)
Are there other platforms where you can reach more people more effectively?
Instagram: Every age demographic and niche community congregates within certain platforms so this depends largely each audience. Facebook has the largest and most active user base by far, but it is increasingly difficult to appear in the newsfeed (especially for business pages) and younger people are avoiding the platform. Twitter seems to be seeing a decrease in active users and engagement is very low compared to other platforms. In the next 1-2 years or more, Instagram seems to have the best potential for growth and engagement.