The popular video-sharing app TikTok has been making headlines lately. It may leave you wondering if you’re missing out by not connecting with customers on the trendy platform. But does your energy utility really need a TikTok account?
The short answer is, “No.” The long answer is, “It depends.”
Every company that embraces the world of social media needs to go into it knowing that each platform attracts very different audiences. This is true especially for energy utilities. Instead of jumping onto every new social media fad, really take time to evaluate your goals and understand the value of each platform. You don’t need a presence on every platform; you need a presence on the right platforms for your brand and audience.
How to choose the right social platforms for your energy utility
1. Know your goals
What are you trying to achieve with social media? Are you trying to drive program participation, share informational content or simply just “show up?” Know what is motivating your energy utility to take the leap into social media before you jump.
2. Research the platforms
There are the go-to platforms we all know and love: Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. However, there are also many others on the market, including Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok and Pinterest, to name a few. Look into each of these platforms and find out what their missions are, how they connect with users and who these users are.
3. Identify the platforms your audience uses
By now, your energy utility should know the demographic of your target audience for any given program or marketing campaign. Now, look into the demographics of each social media platform you’re interested in using.
For example, according to Sprout Social, 69% of adults in the U.S. use Facebook, including 84% of 25- to 30-year-olds, 79% of 30- to 49-year-olds, and 68% of 50- to 64-year-olds. Twitter, on the other hand, reaches a smaller and younger audience: 22% of adults use Twitter, including 44% of 18- to 24-year-olds and 31% of 25- to 30-year-olds.
There is so much research available now on the demographics of any social platform — use these resources to your advantage to decide which is right to reach your energy utility’s target audience.
4. Analyze your analytics options
Each social media platform has its own realm of analytics to monitor your engagement, reach, follower count and more. Still, every platform is different. Make sure a social media platform’s analytics options connect back to your goals.
5. Draft a strategy
Lastly, you’ll want to develop a content strategy that will put your energy utility on the map. Make sure you share a mix of content including articles, infographics and videos, plus share both entertaining and informational pieces.
Be aware that people turn to different platforms for different information, so make your strategy follows those directives as well. For example, many people turn to Twitter for quick outage updates, but look to Facebook for entertaining and educational energy efficiency tips.
Make sure a TikTok account is right for your energy utility
How your energy utility uses social media is more important than how many platforms it’s on. Make sure you research each social media platform and analyze how it aligns with your goals before you delve into monitoring yet another page.
Be wary, too, of social media trends that barely outlast the latest internet meme. Remember Vine? Neither do we. Be prepared to adjust your strategy with social media as the industry grows and develops.