Most brands have accepted the fact that they have to be on Facebook and Twitter. These two social networks are where the majority of users live and play, and unless you have a crazy niche audience that lives in a cave high in the mountains, you are putting time and resources into actively managing these channels.
But Facebook and Twitter aren’t the only games in town. Sure, there’s Pinterest, Instagram, SnapChat, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Google+, Periscope--all big and growing players that you’ve probably dabbled with, at the very least. But what about the hundreds, maybe even thousands, of other smaller, more niche social media networks? What role can these guys play for your brand? Let’s explore five of these secondary and tertiary social networks.
Polyvore is an online style shopping community with more than 20 million unique monthly users, according to their site. Users create fashion or style collages from items found on the site or by uploading their own. Polyvore then recommends items based on user data, and users can shop by clicking on any item on the site or in a collage and visiting the merchant’s site. As you might imagine, it’s heavily female--84% of users are female--but they’ve been making a push for men since early Q1 2016
Who Is It Good For: Ecommerce brands selling women’s fashion and beauty products, and home decor items
What Role Does it Play: Driving traffic and sales
Houzz is an online home decorating and remodeling community with more than 40 million monthly unique users, according to their site. Users can find inspiration for design projects, connect with home professionals to complete the project and shop directly from their curated collection of home goods and furniture.
Who Is It Good For: Ecommerce brands selling home furnishings, and home building and design professionals
What Role Does it Play: Increase awareness, build relationships and drive sales
Instructables is an online community for posting DIY projects about technology, gardening, cooking, crafting and just about any topic you can imagine. Their 4.3 million monthly visitors are young (18-24), college-educated and passionate about learning and creating. The DIY community may seem like an odd place for brands to get involved, but it’s actually quite fitting. These makers are using all kinds of branded products to create their projects, such as the “Lion Brand Magic Stripes Knitted Socks.” They’re also creating instruction or installation manuals for branded products, like”Installation of Dual Flush Converter Kit from Home Depot.”
Who Is It Good For: Brands selling parts, accessories or products that can be used in DIY projects
What Role Does it Play: Find influencers or brand ambassadors, research content topics, drive awareness, engagement and traffic with a contests (e.g., Get in the Garden Contest by NatureMill)
You may remember Jelly from way back in 2014 when the Q&A app first launched by Twitter co-founder Biz Stone. It was used by a handful folks back then, mostly people in the digital marketing industry, and quickly faded from everyone’s memory. Now Jelly is back, and it intends to be your social+search jam. Jelly is attempting to “bring humanity back to search” by allowing people to answer questions, rather than search engines.
Who Is It Good For: Any brand looking to establish credibility as a helpful resource and build engagement
What Role Does it Play: Researching content topics and providing helpful answers to consumers
Mercury retrograde must be causing some nostalgia, because here’s another blast from the past--Ello. When Ello first launched back in 2014, it was billed as anti-Facebook due to it’s promise to never to display ads. That’s still the case today, but Ello has a new, reinvigorated focus on all things visually creative--design, art, photography. Ello seeks to provide a safe and positive environment for creatives, both big and small, to share their ideas, get inspiration and, eventually, sell their work.
Who Is It Good For: Brands that sell highly visual products or are able to produce high-quality visual content to engage users
What Role Does it Play: Showcase products in an aesthetically appealing way, connect with niche audience of creative and tech-focused user