How to Know If a Social Media Platform Is Right for Your Business
How to Know If a Social Media Platform Is Right for Your Business

Social media marketing is definitely an avenue that all businesses should consider when reviewing or creating a marketing strategy for their brand. Even if you have past social media profiles for your business, they need to be reviewed and refreshed with the times. 

Here are a few indicators for what social media platforms will be right for your business. 

Facebook 

As of April of this year, Facebook has reached 2.38 billion users worldwide.

Some defining characteristics of Facebook: 

  1. It is skewing to older generations rather than younger. With the exception of MySpace, Facebook was the first social network of its kind to gain popularity. This popularity started with the older Millennial Generation and has grown in popularity to reach Generation X and Baby Boomers. 
  2. Users are primarily on the platform to keep up with friends and family. This is especially true among Baby Boomers and Generation X. 
  3. Spending time on Facebook typically consists of scrolling through a newsfeed that is now budding with strategic ad placement based off of information that Facebook has on each of its users. 

Facebook is now seen as a pay to play network where organic posts for businesses are not seen as often as ads. However, Facebook advertising is very strategic and when done properly can hit your exact target audience. 

Instagram

As of April of this year, Instagram is seeing 1 billion active monthly users worldwide. 

Some defining characteristics of Instagram: 

  1. Instagram has certainly seen growth over the last few years and has come out as one of the more favorite social media platforms. It’s audience skews younger, with the likes of older Generation Y, Millennials, and even into Generation X. 
  2. Users on Instagram are there to keep up with pop culture, follow their favorite accounts, whatever their interests might be. This includes: bloggers/influencers, travel, nature, pets, shopping, etc. There is something for everyone’s interest on Instagram. 
  3. Spending time on Instagram also includes scrolling through the feed. The main feed consists of accounts the user has personally followed, but there is also a search option with a feed of suggested images that users can scroll through to discover new accounts. 

The advantage that Instagram offers a business are the ability to add hashtags to your posts for an expanded organic reach, the use of Instagram stories; which put your business at the top of the newsfeed for instant top of mind recognition. Instagram also has the ability to save these stories to story highlights so that followers or even customers that are just discovering your profile can go back and watch. Instagram is also tied to Facebook advertising and has come a long way by allowing users to shop products directly within the platform. 

Twitter

As of the first quarter of 2019, Twitter averaged 330 million monthly active users, which is actually a decline from their all time high of 336 million. 

Some of the defining characteristics of Twitter: 

  1. Twitter’s audience is fairly broad, skewing from Millennials to Baby Boomers. Although the primary user base is between the ages of 18-44. 
  2. Twitter users want their information in the now and are on the platform to get the latest updates, news, and information on the people, products, or brands they follow. 
  3. Spending time on Twitter also involves scrolling the newsfeed to view tweets from the accounts followed or following certain hashtags that give users specific information they are looking for. Because Twitter is so text based, it has a high engagement rate when the conversation starts rolling. 

Twitter offers similar advantages to that of Facebook and Instagram with options for advertising. Twitter was the first platform to utilize hashtags and that’s still a popular feature within the platform to gain reach organically. Users have the option to trending hashtags to see what people are talking about in the moment. This is a HUGE opportunity for brands to hop on the trending bandwagon by commenting on trending topics that pertain to your business or create your own tweet utilizing trending hashtags. While this can be an effective strategy, we typically recommend Twitter for specific industries and brands that need to expand their reach beyond their specific location. 

Pinterest

As of the first quarter of 2019, Pinterest reported 291 million monthly active users worldwide. 

Some defining characteristics of Pinterest: 

  1. As of 2019, 79.5% of Pinterest users are female, according to Statista. The male audience share has also increased over time from 14% in 2013 to 20.5% in 2019. This is the perfect platform for targeting Millennial and Generation X females. 
  2. Pinterest users like to browse. The platform offers a never ending photo feed for users to scroll through for ideas, product purchases, information, education, etc. Pinterest users can follow their friends, just specific boards, and brand accounts. 
  3. Spending time on Pinterest typically involves scrolling through the curated feed filled with the types of pins a user typically views. Pins from followed accounts and boards are thrown into the mix, but users can search these directly. Users can also search using specific terms if it’s something new or specific they are searching for. This platform is known for monopolizing time and even has their own lingo, such as ‘pinning’. 

Pinterest also has an ads feature for brands to take advantage of, along with ways to segment out various aspects of your brand’s personality, interests, or products via boards. The real advantage comes in making sure your boards, bios, and pins are all optimized using key terms your target audience is searching for. 

Youtube

YouTube has 1.9 billion users worldwide. 79 percent of Internet users have their own YouTube account. You can navigate YouTube in a total of 80 different languages which covers 95% of the Internet population.

Some defining characteristics of Youtube: 

  1. Youtube is the second most popular social media platform. More and more social channels are jumping on the video bandwagon because video has become so popular and Youtube has been the frontrunner all along. Youtubers are typically Millennials and Generation X, but definitely has a younger audience borrowing their parents’ or older sibling’s devices. 
  2. While you can browse the trending videos on Youtube, most videos are searched directly for, with suggested videos showing next for the user to view. Youtube then curates recommended videos on the users homepage based on their typical searches. 
  3. Spending time on Youtube typically consists of searching for specific topics and it’s also famous for taking users down a rabbit hole of related videos and content. 

Youtube offers advertising for businesses, but these can be pricey depending on the types of videos your business wants to advertise on. Producing original videos is a win/win for a business because it allows the business to produce original video content and optimize the video with a relevant and searchable bio. Keep in mind industry key terms that users may browse to allow your videos to populate within the platform. 

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with nearly 660+ million users in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide.

Some defining characteristics of LinkedIn:

  1. Being a professional network, LinkedIn’s typical audience includes Generation X and Millennials, but you will run into Baby Boomers on this platform. For some Baby Boomers, LinkedIn is their only social media network. 
  2. LinkedIn is all about building professional connections and for some, this is all they login to the platform to view. However, LinkedIn has recently added hashtags to follow and integrated training materials through Lynda.com and LinkedIn assessment tests to hone in on your professional skills. The newly integrated hashtags are shown to users as suggested hashtags to follow, so users can see what’s trending on topics that pertain to their industry. 
  3. Spending time on LinkedIn consists of scrolling through the newsfeed, spending time in LinkedIn groups, job searches, and checking messages. This platform has a high engagement rate for those looking to start conversations in their industry. This platform is the only platform that can benefit individuals looking for jobs or trying to make a name for themselves in their industry. 

LinkedIn also offers the option for businesses to advertise. These advertisements can be filtered through industry or to reach individuals with specific job titles. For businesses, the key to success on LinkedIn is being present – which means staying on a consistent weekly posting schedule, utilizing industry-related hashtags, and posting original content that takes users back to your website.

If choosing multiple platforms for your business, it’s important to become a master of one before moving onto another. Make sure you understand how to drive your audience and ways to optimize your page. It can be time consuming, so making sure you know how it works first before adding another into the mix is key. If this all sounds like too big a task to bear, that’s certainly why we are here. Just think of us as an extension of your marketing team. 

Curious what we’d recommend for your business. Start here with a free consultation. 

Jenn Steere
Jenn Steere
Jenn Steere is the Director of Operations at The Modern Connection, where she enjoys helping businesses succeed in the digital world. She is a graduate of Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, VA (Go Fighting Squirrels!) and has a background in Online Marketing and Management. She loves curling up with a good book in a beach chair and spending quality time with her husband, Colby, and their Tuxedo cat, Chloe and Boston Terrier pup, Ellie.