Open up your iPhone and take a look at the apps on your phone. What do you see? Maybe some periodicals like The Wall Street Journal and New York Times. Maybe some shopping platforms like Poshmark and Fashionphile. But I will bet $10 you have a handful of social media apps, probably even on your home page.
Social Media has changed the way we communicate, spend time, learn information, spread information, and exchange content. And, it is a key way brands and companies market to their consumers.
This article will deep dive into the 5 most popular social media platforms and the benefits to leveraging them as a means to market!
As of October 2021, there are 2.910 billion users on Facebook with about 1.930 billion being active daily (Datareportal.com). This is the most heavily trafficked social media platform to date. Facebook has a feature called “Facebook Ads Manager” where brands can create ads that target users based on an array of preferences (location, age, gender. Even as specific as relationship status and level of education). If you're on a social media marketing team, Facebook gives you the ability to customize ads based on the target audience. What makes this a fantastic tool for a global marketing audience is the ability to customize preference based on different ads. And ad in Mexico can target different customers from those in India and so on.
Twitter comes in second place with 396.5 million users (backlinko.com). Now, this app has seen ebbs and flows with its user volume, but steadily about 206 million users access Twitter daily (backlinko.com). Twitter has gained a reputation as a platform where you go to get new information. Maybe it's the limited word count per post and the vast number of verified users with loyal followers, but the clear and concise updates allow for a teaser, if you will, of information. Brands are notorious for posting links to new products, countdowns, and vague status updates that leave customers anxiously wanting more. Twitter is a fantastic tool to hook consumers.
LinkedIn is a professional network leveraged by nearly “740 million members in 200 countries and regions worldwide” (Kinsta.com). Where Facebook targets any user of all backgrounds and walks of life, LinkedIn targets business professionals, recruiters and those needing to be recruited, and colleagues. Forbes had ranked LinkedIn the best platform for “generating leads and accounts for 46% of social media traffic that generates on company website for B2B firms” (hevodata.com).
Frankly, I am surprised that Instagram is not #1 on this list, but I guess that's because Instagram is a few years behind Facebook but on a similar growth trajectory. Instagram has nearly 1 billion users. What is unique about Instagram is it is not a text heavy platform, it's more about the the photo. Instagram recently came out with advertising options for businesses as well as a feature for consumer's to save brands they follow. Another trend of Instagram's is getting the consumer to post the brand. It's as though brands can get “free” advertising from the very customers who use the products and services. Instagram has gotten on board the social media marketing train.
YouTube offers a unique differentiator than other social media platforms in that this is a video heavy social media tool. Brands can upload videos about the culture of the company, showcase how products are made, highlight messages from the C-Suite, maybe highlight the new commercial that just dropped. It's a place where consumer's can upload tutorials on how the product is used and videos of product reviews. YouTube has “more than 2 billion active users…more than 1/4 of the world's population use YouTube every month” (globalmediainsight.com).
It is clear that every social media platform has a different niche marketing style, but one thing is for certain, the majority of the world is on these top 5 platforms. As a brand's marketing strategy, missing out on leveraging these platforms is an absolute waste of marketing impact.