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Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat are just a few social media platforms to be aware of.

You keep hear friends and clients talk about the advantages they’ve found using social media as part of their marketing plans but you’re not sure if it’s worth giving it a try. You’ve also heard – and maybe even experienced – some of the downfalls and social media seems to be more of a pain than it’s worth. But the upsides far outweigh the downsides.

According to Statsista, there are expected to be 2.77 billion social media users by the end of this year, that is up from 2.46 billion only two years ago. If you’re trying to reach people in the United States, 77 percent of the U.S. population had a social media profile in 2018 with Facebook being the most popular platform.

The site also shows 44 million (66 percent of the population) used social media in the United Kingdom as of January 2018 and 3.59 million people in Ireland are projected to use social media by the end of this year. Australia is also seeing many of its people on social media with nearly eight out of 10 Australians on social media according to Sensis.

But why exactly are those numbers important to you?

While you obviously aren’t going to reach every single one of those billions of people, on social media you will reach a large of number of potential and existing clients inexpensively.

A piece of good news is that Facebook is the most popular platform people use. The platform also gives you many marketing opportunities for very inexpensive pricing.

Putting together a boosted post gives you a variety of options and gives you an idea of how well your selection will do.

Facebook boosting allows you to target exactly the kind of audience you want to reach, pick your exact budget, and decide how long you would like an ad to run for. For under $50, you can reach hundreds or even thousands of people.

Between the ability to reach exactly the audience you want (on all social media platforms) and reaching a large amount of your audience over days or even months for only a few hundred dollars, using social media marketing is a smart move to get your business seen by many for a small budget.

If you don’t want to pay, don’t worry. You’ll still reach people without spending any money (a nice little perk of having a social presence). There are posts you won’t want to boost that will still get plenty of attention. At times, the organic reach on posts I boost is even higher than the paid reach. With either option, it’s likely you’re reaching people you wouldn’t have reached otherwise.

In fact, 78 percent of American consumers say they’ve discovered products and services on Facebook according to this AdExpresso article from last month. However, keep in mind that paid posts do have their advantages. Twenty-six percent of Facebook users report they made a purchase after clicking on an ad (also known as a boosted post).

A major perk of Instagram is that since it is owned by Facebook, you can also have the campaign run on there as well and hit two very popular platforms at once. Instagram has more than 500 million active users and is the second most popular social media platform so it is definitely another platform you should use when you set up your social media accounts.

But what about Twitter?

There is good and bad news with paid advertising on Twitter. Because you aren’t dealing with an algorithm like Facebook and tweets are in chronological order, you have an even better chance to get your material in front of a number of eyes. People are more likely to retweet on Twitter than share posts on Facebook and others can also see replies to you, even if those eyes don’t follow your account.

The great thing about Twitter is that it isn’t as strict on deciding which posts its users want to see so you have more opportunity to get in front of those who follow you. In addition, if you’re relatively active on the platform, you have a bigger chance of people deciding to check you out.

One of the best things about Twitter is the potential for a large organic reach.

In my personal experience, I discover more new farms, horsemen, and products on Twitter than on Facebook because of the retweets and conversations that happen on my feed. Another benefit is that many of your followers will often retweet big events in your company’s life with. Retweets are another way to get keep your name on Twitter feeds without having to pay for advertising.

Twitter does give you the ability to pay for advertising if you want.

The good thing about the Twitter ads is that you can target your audience, but be aware that it isn’t as advanced as the Facebook targeting. The bad thing is that Twitter advertising can be expensive with the cost per confirmed follower costing from $2.50 to $4 according to Thrivehive, which was backed up by multiple other accounts. Overall, the general feelings is that most of the time promoted tweets don’t bring in much value for the money you spend.

With the way Twitter works, unless you have a specific very big event you want to promote, paying to advertise on Twitter probably isn’t worth doing very often.

That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a Twitter account at all though. As you’re probably tired of hearing, Twitter is a great platform to use to not only get your business’ name out there but also interact with potential customers both locally and internationally.

Overall, social media is playing a vital role in the equine industry today no matter what your discipline. With the ability to market your company inexpensively and interact with potential customers on a variety of platforms, you can’t afford NOT to include it in your marketing plans in 2019.

If you aren’t sure where to start on getting social media accounts up and running, Pyrois Media offers both social media consulting and management services. Email Melissa@PyroisMedia.com for more information.

Have a topic you’d like to see covered here? Email Melissa@PyroisMedia.com with your suggestions and you could see it in a future blog!