We all know that social media can be a really effective marketing tool. It gives you a direct line to your customers, allows you to build your brand and helps you direct traffic to your website.
But which social media platforms should you be using? Creating and maintaining a strong presence on all of them would take some serious manpower and it’s not always relevant to your company either. Each platform has its own demographics and its own way of working.
Here we give you a rundown of the most popular social media platforms to help you decide where you should be posting:
Facebook has nearly 2 billion active users and is the largest of the social networks. Every business should have some kind of Facebook presence. However, as the youth turn away from a social network increasingly dominated by older generations, this isn’t the place to properly engage with under-24s. Millennials, Generation X and Baby Boomers, however, are amongst the 44% of users checking Facebook several times a day.
The majority of Snapchat users are under the age of 24, with a high proportion not yet out of high school. Content on Snapchat has to present an authentic look at your brand. Daily stories are formed from a collection of low-budget video snippets, meaning it’s a great option for brands who can’t or don’t want to spend thousands on slick video content. Working with influencers, encouraging users to create stories around a brand and offering promos codes are just some of the marketing tactics used by brands on Snapchat.
Twitter is the most succinct of social media platforms, limiting its users to just 140 characters per post. However you can also post images, videos and links. Hashtags are a big part of the Twitter experience too. Add a few relevant hashtags to your posts to get seen across the network. Twitter has 328million monthly active users but it takes a lot of time and effort to post effectively. You need to engage with customers, retweet relevant content from across the network and become part of the Twitter community to truly reap the rewards of a presence here.
Instagram (which is owned by Facebook) has great reach. It has 500million users, 59% of whom check Instagram every day. The platform allows users to post images and 15 second videos to their feed. Lots of these images are slick and edited to be aspirational rather than realistic. It’s the perfect place to build your brand image but, because links can’t be placed within posts, it’s not a great way to direct traffic to your website.
LinkedIn is a business oriented social networking platform and almost 80% of users are aged 35 or older. It’s a good place for B2B communications and promotions. In fact, according to the 2015 Social Media Marketing Industry report, LinkedIn now beats Facebook as the most important platform for B2B marketing. Brands use the platform for product launches, employee recruitment, generating leads and establishing their companies as industry thought leaders.
70 million people actively use Pinterest. The majority of these are women with the most popular topics including home décor, weddings, fashion and recipes. Images are posted to Pinterest. These can then be assembled into a digital noticeboard. Marketers have the added advantage of adding a Pinterest “buy button” to their posts meaning users can be directed straight to a product on your website.
Whatever your business and whoever your target market, there’s a social media platform out there to help you market your brand. Think about the demographics you want to reach out to and consider your social media objectives before choosing your social media platforms and designing your strategy.
Corinne Ledling is a businesswoman who’s very passionate about her job. She’s a Content Manager at Bizstats.co.uk and loves to share social media tips and tricks and her marketing experience.