social media hand

A popular comment from people about social media is, “I don’t know the right way to do social media.” I always come back with this quote from Jay Baer, “Focus on how to be social, not on how to do social.”

So let’s take the “media” out of “social media” and explore the top four social media platforms with some fun social analogies.

Facebook: Your Local Coffee House

We all have our favorite coffee house that feels like a home away from home. We go there to work, meet friends or clients, and check out what’s going in the neighborhood or just get away.

Facebook is like your very own virtual coffee house. You can stop by anytime for casual conversation with your friends. You can see what events are planned. You can hang by yourself or in a group of friends. And you can usually find really cool art hanging on the walls.

Twitter: The Connoisseur’s Festival

Nowadays there’s a festival for every niche — whether you’re a foodie, a wine or beer lover, or an appreciator of the arts, you can find an event that offers a taste of the best of the best in your desired industry. The Twitter social experience can be very similar to this atmosphere. From afar, many festivals look like bustling zoos, but once you’re inside you’ll find amidst the crowds an amazing source of savvy consumers, and vendors offering tastings of their best product and soundbites of what makes them so great.

Are you the type that likes to engage in soundbites, or witty banter? Find your niche on Twitter by doing some searches — and start tweeting!

Pinterest: The Downtown Art Gallery

When you look at someone’s Pinterest account, you get the sense that you are in a giant art gallery like the Smithsonian or Guggenheim. Each board represents a different room and each pin represents a piece of artwork. We take our time scrolling through the different images, repinning them to our own boards and adding our comments as we go along.

Sharing beauty and interesting images with our friends and community can be a great way to connect, so if you’re visually-inclined Pinterest is for you!

LinkedIn: The Business Networking Event

Remember that last networking event you went to at the Airport Sheraton? You were all set to make those important business connections, possible joint venture partnerships or even score some potential sales leads. Well when you log into your LinkedIn account, you’ve just walked through the doors of that hotel banquet room. Just remember to leave your favorite music videos from the 80’s and inspirational quotes at the door and make sure you’ve got your name tag and a handful of business cards ready because it’s all business in the world of LinkedIn.

All kidding aside. Social media platforms are designed for a specific type of user and audience. When you start to get overwhelmed by all the different types of social media you can do, stop and remember that it’s all about being social. I bet if you focus on the places you like to be social, you’ll find the right social media accounts for you and your business.