The right social media platform is the one your audience is already using. There is no doubt any longer that the social media platforms are the necessary tools for your business. Online research suggests that 73% of marketers have reported social media marketing as being effective for their business. That said, if you are not using social media to the fullest, you are missing out on a huge market opportunity. The only question is how to choose the right social media platform for your business?
There are hundreds of social media platforms to choose from. Therefore, choosing social media platforms that are most popular gives you a head start.
Narrowing down your social media choices
There is a social media platform for everyone and every interest or hobbies. There is no point in having all of the social media platforms up and running. You can simplify your choice by deciding amongst the most popular platforms. Some of these are Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest or recently very popular TikTok. Based on the publicly available data up to 20 April 2020, 15 social media platforms have over 300 million monthly active users.
- Facebook has 2.498 billion monthly active users.
- YouTube has 2 billion monthly active users.
- WhatsApp has 2 billion monthly active users.
- Facebook Messenger has 1.3 billion monthly active users.
- WeChat (Weixin) has 1.165 billion monthly active users.
- Instagram has 1 billion monthly active users.
- TikTok (Douyin) has 800 million monthly active users.
- QQ has 731 million monthly active users.
- QZone has 517 million monthly active users.
- Sina Weibo has 516 million monthly active users.
- Reddit has 430 million monthly active users.
- Kuaishou has 400 million monthly active users
- Snapchat’s potential advertising reach is roughly 398 million active users.
- Twitter’s potential advertising reach is roughly 386 million active users.
- Pinterest has 366 million monthly active users.
- LinkedIn has 310 million monthly active users.
Start by understanding your audience
The best way to choose the right social media platform for your business is to engage with your audience. That said, start by analyzing your audience to better understand what social media platforms they are already using. You can start by conducting a simple customer survey. Include in your customer survey questions like what social media platforms they use, what type of music they listen to, ask about their interest and what influencers they follow on the social media platforms. One way of conducting a customer survey is by using pull on Facebook, or in Instagram stories. Facebook can show you in Facebook Ads what is your audience reach.
You can also research online demographics of social media platform users. To understand your audience means to also know what type of content they would want to engage with. Therefore, we’d recommend you to consider about how to best connect your content to your brand. What is your brand story and how would you create content that will interest your audience.
The type of content you create will depend on a number of things, including your industry, your brand, and your target audience. As an example of content you can consider the following types; blog, testimonials, podcasts, webinars and live stream, use generated content, e-book or videos and photography.
Combine your content with your audience to choose the right social media platform
Now that you know what your content is about and how to understand your audience, you can start planning what social media platforms you will be using. To determine which one best fits your needs, we prepared a summary of the most popular platforms and what they are used for.
The most popular social media platforms
Facebook is a widely used social media platform. Facebook is good for lead generation, and its advertising platform can be highly customized to target very specific audiences. Many types of content are good for Facebook, but it is up to you to create outstanding content that will stand out. With Facebook Ads, you can target a specific niche and audience for your business. Facebook is also a place where you can loosen the tie a bit – don’t be afraid to be funny.
Instagram is an entirely visual platform. For instance, Nike used the Instagram Stories’ feature to promote inspirational athlete stories you won’t find anywhere else.
LinkedIn is typically the choice platform for B2B businesses, and especially if your goal is lead generation. This is a platform where you have the opportunity to build your brand authority and tell your brand story to other businesses. The demographic on LinkedIn is also different than other sites because there are more users between the ages of 30 to 49 than there are users under 30.
Twitter is the go-to platform if your business is about immediacy. If you want to reach out to followers with breaking news, announcements, important messages, and others in the moment information. You can also tweet about your live webinar or interesting moments during the event. Image perform better than videos on Twitter, but the text-based content is a go-to.
Pinterest is a visual platform great to generate leads. According to online data, 98% of people report trying new things they discover on Pinterest, compared to 71% on other platforms. Business-to-consumer (B2C) companies, in general, have a much easier time on Pinterest than business-to-business (B2B) companies. Data provided by Pinterest suggests that 40% of users have household incomes of more than 100k annually.
Choosing the right social media platform for your business is important for your business. Social media can not be set aside in your business strategy plan if you want to stay online. That said, with social media platforms you can connect to your audience, engage with and it can help you reach people internationally. The answer to making the right decision in choosing the right social media platform is to know your audience, creating an engaging content that will stand out and in managing your social media platforms.