How many times have you heard, “I’m too old for Instagram. I don’t think I should use it.” before?
I’ve heard it from quite a few friends, co-workers, and even clients of mine that I work for as a social media consultant. They’re not even always talking about Instagram necessarily. Sometimes they’re talking about Facebook, Snapchat, (and now) TikTok. They allow their age to be a barrier as to what they can and can’t do on social media. To me, this puts them at a huge disadvantage because they could be leaving multiple (appropriate) markets untapped. So, I try to walk them through this.
If you’re struggling to decide whether or not a social media platform is right for you, stick around. Some of these tips and pieces of insight I’ve obtained might help you come to a conclusion on what’s right for you; and guide you in the way you want to use social media.
When you’re asking yourself about how you want to use social media, and assessing where your interests lie, consider the following:
- Who do I want to interact with my business? Is it the younger crowd that’s under 25? Maybe it’s the moms who are 30-55? Consider who your target demographic actually is. Then, you’ll be able to see which social media platform you should spend the most time of on. The younger crowd is all about TikTok right now. Instagram is where the ladies are at. Facebook is awesome in that you can reach a variety of people, and yet you’re more likely to reach the “older” crowd because they’re getting the hang of it now.
- Am I really “incapable” of doing this myself? Ask yourself, do I just not have the patience for learning something new? Am I not interested learning something new or am I really just befuddled about all of it and could use some help? If you feel “incapable” of learning about a new social media platform, I promise you that you’re not. It takes months (if not years) to really get the hang of a platform. We’ve all been there, regardless of age. I’d suggest trying to put an account together to the best of your ability, and then asking for guidance when you’ve hit a spot that you’re struggling with.
- Am I prepared to learn social media etiquette? HowStuffWorks reminds us that, “For those of us who grew up without computers, text messaging and e-mail, social networking sites may seem daunting. The Internet has its own set of social norms and acceptable behaviors, most of which are learned by trial and error.” This should tell you a few things immediately. Firstly, it’s going to take time to learn the etiquette part of it. Secondly, you are entering a world with expectations in place. Third, these “acceptable” behaviors are constantly changing. For example, when it comes to business, remember that you’re serving an audience connected to a brand. Your business page is not (and should not become) your personal diary. That’s what a personal page is for.
- Do I have an aesthetic in mind that will quickly brand me and catch the eye of my desired customers? Do you have ideas on how to present yourself? What does that look like? What message to I want to send my audience?
- Can I keep my posting schedule consistent? Are you prepared to post content regularly? How often? How much posting is “too much” for you, and how much is “too little” for them?
If you’re someone who isn’t overly tech savvy or social media savvy, that’s okay! A great place to help you start to answer some of those previous questions for yourself would be to take a look at what similar businesses as yours are doing on their social media sites. What are they doing that you like? Are they doing anything that would make sense for your customers? Are they doing anything that seems totally unnecessary or out of line? Is there anything that you see them doing that you know you wouldn’t want to do with your own page? All of that information can help.
Don’t think you’re “too old” for social media. Maybe it’s time for social media to get on your level! Go forth and create your own vibe that makes sense for you and your business!