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How to choose the best social channels for your strategy

The social media landscape is constantly changing. With new channels, tools and algorithms being introduced all the time, it can be tricky to keep up.
Sarah Latham

Sarah Latham

3 minute read
April 21, 2022
The social media landscape is constantly changing. With new channels, tools and algorithms being introduced all the time, it can be tricky to keep up.
How to choose the best social channels for your strategy Image

Social media is a key ingredient in digital marketing, with 80% of marketers believing it can help gain valuable audience insights - according to Hootsuite’s 2022 Social Trends Report.

But with so many different channels to choose from, how do you know which ones your organisation should be using? We’ve created a short guide below to help you select the right social channels for your strategy.


Don't lose sight of your objectives

The pressure to be 'everywhere' has incited a surge in organisations trying to cover all bases. But it’s a myth that spreading your net as far and wide as possible will reap better rewards. Instead, focus on what you want to achieve and leverage the social platforms that will help you get there.

Start by interrogating which channels will help you achieve your goals. If you can’t explain why a particular channel will help you get to where you want to be, then you probably shouldn’t be investing in it.

If your goal is to do with building web traffic and you're not a verified account, then Instagram may not be the best channel as it's tricky to direct traffic to your account without the swipe up feature. And if your goals are to do with lead generation then Facebook and LinkedIn have targeting tools that make them the sensible choice. 

Whether your goals are to do with community engagement or lead generation, don’t forget that paid promotion is one of the key tools for extending your reach and creating conversions. Digital advertising tools vary across social channels, and come with varying price tags. Do it's important to do your research at this point to work out which will work best for you (and your budget).


Be where your target audience is

Once you’ve connected your channels to your goals, you’ll then need to consider where your audience is spending their time online. For example, if you speak to a Gen Z audience then having a Facebook account could be a waste of time and resources. The same goes for having a TikTok presence when you're actually looking to target 'boomers'. 

If you’re not sure which channels are right for your target audience, HubSpot’s State of Social Demographics report is a good place to start. These data-driven insights will help you choose the right channels for reaching your desired audience in the right place, and at the right time. You can also use social listening tools to help you understand who your followers are and what they care about. We use HubSpot for this, but there are plenty of others to choose from – Hootsuite, Sprout Social and Buffer to name a few…


Take into account where competitors are

Understanding what your competitors are doing is key to shaping a successful social media strategy. So set aside some time to research competitor activity across various social channels. Discovering what kind of content they post, how often they post it, and what engagement they tend to get can help you to build a tactical plan of action and manage your own expectations.

Audience listening tools such as Buzzsumo can be helpful at this stage. It analyses competitor activity and engagement, and helps you understand where they have the most impact and influence.


Consider your content

Certain content formats are better suited to some channels than others.

For example, if you’re looking to build an aspirational and visual brand story then Instagram is the place for you. But if you want to share articles that will help establish your organisation as a thought-leader, then LinkedIn is better suited.

Video content tends to perform well across all channels. Long-form educational content performs best on Meta and YouTube. But if it's reels and meme-style video content you're looking to share, then TikTok and Instagram should be firmly on your radar.


Social media marketing can be a powerful tool when you get it right. Just remember to concentrate on your goals, take time to understand your audience and deliver impactful content that appeals to them.

For more insight on social media marketing, check out our blog 'Social media algorithms: friend or foe?'.