Real-Life Equivalents of Social Media Platforms

Aug 8, 2014 | Social Media

Businessman touching tablet with icons hovering around

When setting up a social media marketing strategy, you have to determine what counts as a win and set goals. But you must also consider how your prospective clients use their own social media accounts. This will give you a better chance to connect with them in a way that is appealing and drives more leads and sales.

To better understand these networks, let’s look at them a little differently. What if social media had real-life equivalents?


Facebook is a family reunion. I always say that Facebook makes your world smaller. From the way people use it and the posts that Facebook’s algorithm shows, it is clear that users connect with people they actually care about on Facebook.

How do your posts fit into your customers’ lives? Do they truly care about and support your product or service? Will they miss keeping up with you in their newsfeeds? Craft your content with this in mind.


Twitter is a busy train station full of interesting people—think Grand Central Station. Everyone is hustling from place to place. Information is everywhere. Train departure times, loudspeaker announcements, and thousands of conversations are all merging together in a mass of data overload. People use Twitter for quick bursts of information to stay up to date on various happenings. 

The timing of your message is everything. The information you share has to be in the right place at the right time. How does your Twitter strategy line up with your customers’ use? Are they actually on Twitter when you share your content?


Google+ is that coffee shop that always seems empty or dark, but stays alive and even thrives somehow. Its regulars are enthusiasts who love a great espresso and demand only the best coffee that is roasted in-house. There is a certain sort of exclusiveness to Google+. Its users are loyal and are often on the cutting edge of technology in their fields. They often join communities and share their knowledge or experiences to help others find success. It looks obscure on the surface, but if you take a closer look there is a cult following of potential brand advocates.

Are you using Google+? Does your strategy look a lot like your old Facebook strategy? Consider positioning and posting content to lively and relevant groups.


Linked-In is the convention center full of people you want to impress. Everyone is dressed to the nines, smiling and shaking a lot of hands. Business cards are exchanged and success stories are told on grand scales. These people could all be great contacts or prospective leads. But, you have to rein in your excitement and build a plan that doesn’t include giving a business card to every person in the room. It’s a technique.

Linked-In is about networking and strategically joining groups to have relevant conversations. If done right, these conversations can lead to more business contacts and even leads.

Think about your business’ presence on Linked-In. Are you a company that has positioned itself as a sought-after connection? Are your messages worth following?


Instagram is like a scrapbook. Inside you place pictures to help you remember great experiences and show them to your friends and family. Only Instagram is a real-time scrapbook. It is all about letting others experience your life with you. People share pictures of things that are the most important to them at the moment. Often it’s their kids, a nice dinner, a beautiful sunset, or anything else that just strikes them at the time. And it is all visual!

Think about how you use Instagram for marketing. How can your company invite your followers to partake in what happens in your life? How can you create creative and attractive images that get and keep your customers’ attention?


Pinterest is the ultimate show-and-tell with a very important twist: the share button. Users share DIY projects, delicious recipes, the latest in fashion, business infographics, and more! The difference is that everyone gets access to this content (unless it’s set to “secret”), and anyone can share it with their friends. They don’t take it home with them like we did in kindergarten. The power of Pinterest is what makes it so prevalent.

Does your company use Pinterest? If so, how? You can post great pictures or your newest product, but don’t forget to pin naturally sharable content as well.


These two are kind of like passing notes in class in middle school. You have a group of friends involved, and when the conversation is over, the note is destroyed (or at least disappears). Snapchat and Slingshot are exclusive platforms used with only the closest of friends.

These are the hardest to use as a business. Your customers have to be incredibly loyal—and you must earn their full trust to succeed in befriending them in this way. That takes work! And your posts better live up to their trust in you.

We hope this helps you better understand and utilize these social networks. If you’d like to learn more, get in touch with us!

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