The world of social media is fragmenting and while the big players aren’t going anywhere soon (even with the recent Cambridge Analytica drama) it seems like new platforms are emerging everywhere, each tailored to its own unique niche. From gamers and beer lovers to students and engineers you name it and there’s probably a social network (or app) for it.
The idea of niche social media platforms isn’t new. In fact, they’ve existed in some form for a while now since Reddit and Tumblr first hit the scene. Recently, they’ve been growing in popularity with brands and users alike. Social media is supposed to be social after all. People want to connect with people like them and these new platforms are making it easier than ever.
How to Find your Niche
While having a presence on the bigger platforms will always be an important part of your digital marketing strategy, the Facebooks and Twitters of the internet are a place where anyone can discuss anything. Niche social media platforms, on the other hand, offer a more specialized place for people to come together and let you hone in on the conversation that really matters to your target audience. So how can brands get in on the action?
- Tailor Your Content to Their Interests – Believe it or not, this one’s easier said than done. Nowadays, social media and messaging accounts for roughly 1 in every 3 minutes users spend on the internet. That’s a lot of minutes! And a lot of content consumption, but even on a niche social media platform, you can bet there are sub-niches within it just waiting to be explored. Do some digging so you reach these folks with personalized messages that really resonate.
- Know Your Neighbors – Forget statewide or even citywide. Now you can get even more targeted. Niche social media networks are taking hyperlocal to the next level. Apps like Nextdoor, Meetup, and others are emerging where people and businesses can share the latest information and build community on a neighborhood level.
- Connect with Influencers – What better place to find the people who influence your fans than a platform dedicated to those very interests? They’re already there connecting with others in the community and building a trusted reputation with your potential customers. Harness those connections and build off them to maximize your success.
- Capture Those Conversions – Niche social media networks may be smaller but their users are highly engaged in the community (and the conversation). And all that engagement means higher quality leads and higher conversion rates for you. After all these folks have already expressed an interest in your industry just by signing up for the network.
Don’t be afraid to explore what’s out there. Find your tribe and join their community or create one a community your own, like Cornell’s College of Engineering, did with CollabSpace, an online platform for young engineers and makers. Branch out, find your niche and build relationships with those highly engaged users on niche social media sites. Who knows, you might even discover trends that impact or even reshape your industry.
Kaitlyn Delaney is a Social Media Strategist with a “minor” hashtag obsession. When she’s not tweeting, pinning, or ‘gramming you can find her traveling and hitting the beach, hopefully at the same time.