Are fringe social media networks worth the effort?

Are fringe social media networks worth the effort?
Group of Diverse People Discussing About Social Media

You’re already creating awareness and building your brands using a variety of social media platforms, most likely Facebook and Twitter, and possibly Google+ and Instagram. But the social media world extends far beyond these most popular channels, to include a growing number of fringe networks – so should you include them in your online marketing campaigns?

First let’s take a look at what’s out there. Heard of pheed, Bubblews or No, probably not. How about the social network called Sulia? Too late – they’ve gone bust, after hoovering up millions in investor dollars. But the others above are still alive and online, and actively carving out their own niches in social media land. That presents solid opportunities for companies and their brands.

These far smaller social media platforms cater to specific audiences, so for companies, it’s possible to reach out to segments of their markets that they might well miss by just using the more general audiences of Facebook, Twitter and others. Depending on the size of your company, however, it’s just not possible to be active on everything that’s out there – unless you have a dedicated online marketing team or have outsourced the job to a digital agency.

So the key in all of this is to examine the demographics of each niche social media site and see what best fits your target market. Remember, untapped areas of various markets can provide surprisingly high marketing returns, in terms of sales and overall profits, as well as attracting a whole new group of loyal customers.

But wait – we’re not even done mentioning all the social media newcomers. There’s also Ello, which bills itself as a “Social Revolution”; the video-based service Vine; all the messaging apps, such as Snapchat; and LinkedIn for B2B. It’s a real social media explosion!

So while you’re trying to decide what might work best for your online marketing campaigns, here’s one thing you can do right now: remember that while you may not be inclined to use one particular platform right now, it might suddenly gain wildly in popularity and you’ll want to be on board. So go ahead – you have our permission! – and register accounts for your company (with the same brand or company name) across every single social media channel, niche or not, so that it’s available when needed and no one else can sign up in your name in the meantime.

Call it a kind of social media insurance for the uncertain online days ahead.