How To Stay Buttoned Up With Social Media Buttons

April 12, 2012

Recognize all of those logos? You probably see most of them on any brand or product page you visit on a regular basis. Of course you do—it’s a great way to drive attention to your webpage.

But have you started to see buttons for Google+, Pinterest and Foursquare?

And how about the “Healthy” button? If you aren’t familiar with it, it’s from one of my favorite mobile applications, Runkeeper. What started as a way to track your runs and other physical activity using the GPS in your phone has evolved into some kind of social network centered around all things health-related. And now with this new button, you can share “healthy” articles with other Runkeeper friends.

There are a myriad of social networks that brands want you to share their products, their videos, their content and more on. But which ones should get the precious space on webpages with dedicated buttons? It seems like right now most brands are just choosing the “big” networks.

But does that make the most sense? Do we necessarily think or even want consumers to “plug” things on all their social channels? I’ve found – anecdotal – my friends and followers hate that! It’s signal noise—they don’t want to read something I’m excited about on multiple channels.

At the same time, we are going to run into a space issue—we can’t put every button on our webpages. Perhaps the solution isn’t picking the biggest social networks, but instead, the ones where our content would have the most relevance.

Below are some helpful suggestions. These aren’t be all, end all solutions, but they’re what I think might work best for you, and for your consumers:

  • Facebook or Twitter users tend to like anything pop culture related; we shouldn’t expect users to want to put press releases on there for us (and we shouldn’t be doing so either)
  • Twitter users seem to be fine with being a “catch-all” for check-in related updates (e.g. GetGlue, Foursquare, etc.) whereas Facebook users tend to hate that
  • If you have a webpage with something incredibly visual, you’ll definitely want to have to have a pin it to Pinterest button
  • Unless your webpage has a physical destination associated with it, you probably shouldn’t have a Save to Foursquare button on it
  • The “healthy” one from Runkeeper is fairly new so I’d wait to see how it evolves, but I wouldn’t suggest putting it on product pages unless the product is considered healthy by a credible third party

What social media buttons do you click on webpages on a regular basis? Are there any you wish you saw used more?

Alan has been with Ketchum for more than five years. Follow him on Twitter at @adanzis if you want rare insights about PR and social media, and tons of stuff about video games, technology and other sci-fi and nerdy things.