Social media is more than a fad. According to the Duke University Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) survey on Social Media, 11 percent of marketing budgets are currently going to running social media channels, which is expected to rise to an astonishing 24 percent in five years. Of the current spending, 22 percent of the CMOs surveyed said that outside agencies conduct 22 percent of their companies’ social media activities. Your business cannot afford to get it wrong so we’ve compiled a short list to help guide your social media endeavors.

Twitter

According to Google Small Business, 85 percent of Twitter users feel more connected to small- and medium-sized businesses after following them. There are several companies who get it right. Look at a company like LifeLock. Its Twitter account is a great example of a well-managed and well-established Twitter account. It’s amassed more than 23k followers because of the up-to-date information it provides and how it engages with its followers.

Twitter also provides other ways to connect with users. Promoted Trends get placed for 24-hours and have a strong conversion rate.

Businesses should also be aware of Twitter Amplify. While Amplify has been around for a few years, it has just recently been revamped and rolled out to more businesses. The service helps brands monetize and sponsor videos. The program lets advertisers select the video categories they feel will best get their message and brand in front of their target audience. Both advertising avenues, Promoted Trends and Amplify, are effective. Still, businesses need interesting content in order to convert followers.

Instagram

The Instagram Business Tagline is “Inspire People Visually With Your Business’ Story.” With 400M+ active users Instagram has become the leading social media channel for many brands. Visual content is king and, if managed correctly, a business account provides businesses a great way to connect online by providing visually appealing content. For those interested in bulking up their Instagram efforts, the Instagram Business account offers businesses inspiration for their own accounts.

Periscope

A newcomer in the crowded social media field, this mobile streaming app can be a little more tricky for businesses to use, but should not be discounted. Periscope has grown exponentially since it launched last March. The Twitter-owned company now has 10 million users, making it the fastest growing social media channel ever. Businesses should think about jumping on board while the app is still young. Potential business uses: live-streaming daily operations, board meetings, question and answer sessions, and any other live event that tells your brand’s story. Be interesting and people will take notice.

Facebook

You probably think you know everything you need to know about this social media platform. However, Facebook is always evolving and how your business manages its Facebook account should be evolving as well. Gone are the days when you could simply post and interact with your followers. Now, Facebook’s algorithms make it harder to get your posts in front of your followers without shelling out a few bucks. Consider boosting your posts to get the maximum effect out of Facebook. It’s rather simple and cost-effective to do. You only need to choose your target audience and the amount you want to spend, which can be as little as $5 for each post you boost. Of course, the amount you spend will determine the number of people you reach.

Your business needs to spend its time and money wisely on social media endeavors. Failing to do so can be costly.