Where to Focus Your Attention: Top 5 Social Media Sites
This blog was originally published Aug 28, 2020 and updated January 2023.
There is an ever-increasing number of social networking sites, but paying attention to the top 5 will create the most opportunities for building your brand and promoting your business, in order to increase reach and profits. That said, keep in mind that social media is really about quality posts. So, if it’s too overwhelming to you to do 5 platforms, just pick the one that makes the most sense based on your client avatar. Start there, get it going well, and then later you can add on when you are ready.
While the previous top 5 social media sites included Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram. The newest statistics are showing TikTok and YouTube being top contenders and video being a key part of marketing strategy. In addition, stories, reels and now, YouTube shorts are increasingly popular formats for consumers.
Let’s take a closer look at each of these to help you decide where to focus your social media marketing attention.
Facebook now has more than 2.9 billion monthly users. It allows individual and corporate pages, and a variety of written, video, and promotional content. Despite reports that Facebook is decreasing in popularity amongst a younger audience, it is #1 in the world and #1 where it counts-with consumers who have money to spend.
The audience tends to consist of more women than it does men. Both use social search to learn more about products and services and get recommendations. Women socialize more and keep in touch with friends and family through their accounts. They are also more likely to access their account on a mobile device.
They participate more in groups, polls, and surveys and tend to respond better to ads. The ads on Facebook are highly targeted and a good deal cheaper than the Google network, so making the most of all the free as well as paid marketing opportunities on Facebook is the best way to build your audience rapidly and stay connected with them.
Instagram is a visual platform that boasts 1 billion monthly users worldwide, with 500 million checking in every day. There’s an even gender split though Generation Z (18-24-year-olds) make up 75% of users. And, 90% of users follow at least one business account.
Twitter has 436 million users. Many people like it because they feel it is fun and easy to use. The posts, called tweets, can only be 280 characters long, so it is a fast way to update your followers about your business. More men than women are on Twitter, worldwide. Though in the US it’s a pretty even split with women actually tweeting more, making up 65% of active tweeters. They also re-tweet or share your tweets. This helps you to reach a wider circle of people. Twitter also has an easy-to-use advertising program to help gain followers and feature tweets.
LinkedIn, geared towards businesspeople, has 810 million users with more men than women using the platform. LinkedIn works well to connect with people you know and tap into business-to-business opportunities. They also have advertising in relation to lead generation, that is, focusing on getting people to sign up for your email marketing list. They also bought SlideShare, the #1 site for sharing PowerPoint presentations. Use all the opportunities to build your brand and reach if your product line appeals to business people.
Pinterest is a social media platform that focuses on images. It has 431 million users, with women accounting for 76% of users. Though the majority of “pinners” are under 40 the median age of users is over. It is a visual social network where people pin pictures related to products, services, and more to virtual pinboards related to particular topics. They also re-pin to share interesting content with their social circle.
Studies have shown that around 83% of weekly users have made a purchase based on what they saw on Pinterest, with 72% using Pinterest to decide what to buy offline. If your products are highly visual, ideal for women, or you wish to tap into a female-centric market, this is the site for you.
While those are what people typically think of as the “main” social media, we can’t forget our friends YouTube, Snapchat, and the newer emerging TikTok. With video being so prevalent on the internet, YouTube is not only a popular option for sharing information but it’s becoming a bit of a search engine in and of itself. YouTube has over 2 billion logged-in users and has proven to be really popular for men. (which are typically a little harder to reach on social media) Snapchat is pretty much a “teen” and young adult program but if that’s your niche, then you may choose that over one of the above platforms. Again, it’s all about knowing your clients/customers.
TikTok really became popular during the COVID-19 pandemic, with 180% growth during that time. Short videos with various elements to edit them make up the posts. TikTok currently has 1 billion active monthly users and the average user opens the app 19 times per day.
Where will you put YOUR best efforts? Know your clients, look at where they can be found and choose wisely. Once you do that and you focus in your efforts, you can’t help but have success.
Rebecca Paciorek is an Online Business Manager specializing in assisting in the growth of your business through traditional and digital means.
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