Using social media to advance your business has many benefits. Whether you want to expand visibility, promote products and services, increase sales or network with companies alike, social media is an effective and affordable tool to achieve your business goals.
There is one burning question, though. How do you determine which platform would be the best for your business? The answer to this question: it varies. It depends on your target audience, the products and services you offer, and platform functionality.
In this article, we will explore six different social media sites and their versatility to help you determine which platform can be most profitable for you and your business.
With nearly 2.96 billion monthly users, it is easy to assume why Facebook is at the top of our list. Almost any company can cater toward their audience with a user base as big as Facebook. From micro influencers to family-owned businesses to major corporations, there are many ways Facebook can get your name out there.
A common misconception about Facebook is that it’s used mostly by older individuals. The average user is men and women between the ages of 35-44. However, usership is balanced across all age ranges. Fitness and healthcare, e-commerce, and real estate agencies are examples of businesses that do well on Facebook.
If you have a tight marketing budget, Facebook Messenger can be used to reach out to potential clients organically. But if you’re willing to invest a little bit of money, Facebook Ads is a service where you can create your own advertisements and choose who you want to reach. Facebook also provides detailed metrics to inform you of your progress. The best part? You determine how much you want to spend.
We do not recommend using this platform if you do not have a budget for digital marketing. Additionally, if your company goes against Facebook ad policies, such as promoting illegal or false content, this platform might not be right for you and your business goals.
YouTube is an unsung platform where users can watch videos and upload original content for free. YouTube is a competitive search engine where you can easily reach your target demographic through uploading videos and advertising on other users’ videos.
More than half of YouTube’s user base is a Gen Z or Millennial. It is a nearly even split between men and women who watch. YouTube is mainly used for entertainment, but everybody has a different vision of what makes up entertainment. Be wary of this when deciding how to target your audience. E-commerce, influencers and video game companies are examples of businesses that thrive on this platform.
YouTube also allows you to optimize company searches through the input of keywords in the title, description and keyword tool. This makes it easier for prospective clients to find your company. Since YouTube is owned by Google, your content gets included in the search engine’s results and is included in Google’s ad network.
The downside to this platform is the unpredictability of the algorithm. For example, your advertisement may be placed on a video that is unrelated to your business or does not uphold your business values.
Twitter is most known for posting photos, videos and a limited caption of 280 characters or less. The way Twitter’s algorithm is set up for content delivery facilitates a higher click-through rate than competitor sites.
Similar to Facebook and Instagram, most of the site’s traffic comes from men between the ages of 25-34 years old in the United States. Sports teams, higher education and non-profit organizations are all industries that thrive off Twitter’s platform.
Hashtags may also be used to connect to users or similar accounts through keywords. This improves visibility and can ultimately lead to an increase in brand awareness. Recently, Twitter also introduced a monthly subscription that boosts subscribing accounts’ impressions. For a business that is trying to grow a following and has sought-after information to post, this is a good option to get in front of more potential followers.
One thing to note – active usership has decreased within the past year due to many changes that have occurred under new ownership. We suggest keeping this in mind when narrowing down your social media selection.
A newer contender, TikTok is an app where users can create and consume short-form video content. It is often used for entertainment purposes. However, there is plenty of content on TikTok that is informational and educational and receives good engagement.
TikTok is primarily used by women between the ages of 16-24. Millennials also use the platform, but at a lesser rate. Beauty, fashion and interior design are all industries that thrive on TikTok. If you’re trying to reach a younger generation, TikTok is the perfect platform to do so.
TikTok’s algorithm provides a fair chance for your content to go viral, as it shows content on users’ “For You Page” based on what they interact with. However, this also can make it challenging for brands to see consistent engagement, as TikTok places an emphasis on “discovering” new accounts and content.
As users scroll, there are in-feed ads as well, which allow users to interact with companies and view their products and services in just one click. This takes away unnecessary steps for clients to find your company and enhances conversion rates.
Like other social media platforms, hashtags can also drive traffic through keywords. Hashtags help with brand exposure, encourages interaction, and can be used to inform content research.
We do not recommend TikTok if you wish to only target a specific audience. When TikTok videos gain a lot of traction, there is no apparent formula behind who sees the video. TikTok can also be a difficult medium to work with if you do not wish to take on a casual, informal and friendly approach to marketing your business.
Since Facebook and Instagram are both owned by Meta, they share many similar qualities. However, Instagram is a cost-effective alternative to Facebook.
Instagram is a free photo and video sharing app with many ways to organically grow your business and establish a brand voice. Focused on visuals, Instagram makes it so you can create innovative content to entice potential customers.
Instagram offers a variety of content mediums: Instagram Stories, that are only live for 24 hours; Instagram Reels, which are short-form videos like TikTok; and livestream videos.
Users can shop directly from e-commerce brands, too. By facilitating the shopping process, users are more likely to purchase from your selection of products and services.
While Instagram’s user demographic is evenly split between men and women, more than half of users are under the age of 34. Most users reside in India, with the United States and Brazil trailing closely behind. Fashion, travel and events are examples of successful industries on Instagram.
The way Instagram’s algorithm is designed makes it so heavily promoted, repetitive or spammed content may be suppressed. If this is concern, you may want to consider marketing yourself on a different or additional platform.
LinkedIn is commonly dubbed as a professional networking site. Whether you want to score an internship, build rapport with other professionals in your field, or learn some new skills, LinkedIn is a great resource for the right business model.
On a global scale, the average users of LinkedIn are Millennials and Gen Z. The site sees very little traffic from people over the age of 55. Users tend to be more educated with a higher income.
LinkedIn allows businesses to target a more professional audience. It also lets you narrow down your ads through industry-specific variables. No other social media platform has this ability. Most other platforms will show ads depending on behavior-based elements.
LinkedIn also takes a slightly different approach to advertising. For example, the offer a service called Sponsored InMail. It is intertwined with their direct messaging platform. This method is wildly successful, as click-through rates are much higher than regular emails. Their Lead Accelerator feature lets users monitor their most valuable prospects. Through this, users can push their ads toward promising leads.
Since LinkedIn is geared toward the professional realm, it may not be a good platform to choose if your company is more relaxed and natural. Additionally, it is easier to reach success on LinkedIn if you already have a decent following. A couple hundred connections may not be enough to effectively market your business.
You don’t need a huge budget to have a successful company. There are so many affordable resources available waiting to be discovered. Social media is one of those powerful tools that when used correctly, can lead you to a path of success.
Make your business boom! Contact Omega for additional resources to grow your company.
Written by Omega High Impact Print Solutions’ Digital Marketing Intern, Gracie Steel