The Mindset Divide explains how people use social networks differently for personal and professional purposes, based on a study conducted by social networking site LinkedIn in collaboration with market research firm TNS.
The study involved surveying 1,000 users of nine of the most popular global social networking sites, including Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Pinterest.
The major findings of the study include:
- People experience different emotions when using social networking sites and professional networking sites. When they go on sites like Facebook, they feel nostalgia since they use the site to keep in touch with old friends they have not seen in years to relive old memories. On the other hand, when they go on LinkedIn and similar sites, they are looking for a sense of achievement and success since they are looking for information that can benefit them professionally.
- People also use social networks in different ways. When they go on social networking sites, they are in a casual mindset and are looking to just have fun, socialize with other Facebook members and be entertained. On the other hand, when they go on LinkedIn, they see it as an investment of time in their careers as it provides them with an opportunity to build business contacts through networking as well as searching for professional opportunities.
- They also have different expectations of what content they are looking for. On sites like Facebook, they are looking for personal information on family, friends and other members as well as games and entertainment updates. However, when they log onto LinkedIn, they are looking for things like career information, news on current and business affairs as well as updates on luxury brands.
Here are some tips on how you can maximize your online marketing efforts on these sites by recognizing the Mindset Divide.
- Shift the emphasis of your marketing based on which site you are placing ads on. This will allow you to more effectively take advantage of the emotions people are feeling while they are on these sites to strengthen the impact of their advertising message.
- Don’t forget that you are still on a social networking site even when you’re marketing on a professional site like LinkedIn. Make sure that you are building a relationship with the users of these sites rather than trying overtly to sell to them.
- Tailor the updates you’re offering based on which site you’re on. For example, if you are on Facebook, you want your message to be more casual and light. On the other hand, if you are on LinkedIn, you want the message you’re offering to be more focused on professional topics like updates on the various industries as well as the latest brands.
- However, you should also recognize that with many social networking sites, the divisions between the personal and professional are blurred. For example, many businesses now have presences on Facebook and Twitter. Many people also use Facebook for professional network, albeit on a more informal level compared with how they would network on LinkedIn.