So what is a platform anyway? We hear every new startup company mentioning that they want to become the platform for… But do we really even know what a platform is? I like the way Search Server Virtualization defined a platform – any base of technologies on which other technologies or processes are built.
Using this definition, there are a ton of social media platforms out there. Blogging platforms including WordPress and Blogspot, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google +, Instagram, Flickr, Quora, Foursquare, Yelp, and the list goes on and on. There is almost every type of platform available, but the trick is knowing which platform is better for you.
Now if you’re a 50-year-old mother of a friend of mine who is reading this blog, STOP HERE. Just keep posting your Farmville requests to all of your friends who haven’t muted you and be done with social media. For everyone else, lets dig a bit further.
My personal favorites: G+, Twitter and Instagram in that order. Some people don’t understand why I like G+ so much, and to those people I say that you haven’t really tried it. If you have tried it and aren’t convinced, read this article here. Twitter is my lifeblood to the outside world, and keeps me updated with all the sports, news and local happenings that I need. Instagram connects me with my friends in a personal, simple way that is not available on other social networks.
While those are my favorites, different people would obviously rank different social platforms differently. Decide what you want to accomplish, and how you want to connect with people and then choose the appropriate social media platform. As a caveat, I would recommend signing up for each social media account and at least claiming your name or brand, as this will make things much easier in the future. Many times I’ve had to work with a legal team to claim brand property from squatting people, which can be a massive headache. To save yourself the time, just register your brand or name when you hear about the social network.