There are 7 billion people in the world.
And thanks to the Internet, you can find them all in one place.
Every day, billions of people wake-up and get on social media. And every day, billions of people go to sleep right after checking social media.
It’s how they receive their news. It’s how they connect with family and friends. And, it’s how they find and connect with their favorite brands.
But when it comes to your business, which social media platform is best for you?
How many social media platforms should your business be on? And more importantly, how to use social media effectively for your business?
Today, you find out the answers.
We’re going to help you identify the BEST social media platforms to use for your business.
We’ve used several social media platforms to not only help many of our clients grow their businesses, but we also have practiced the same techniques to grow our own social media presence.
For example, we’ve recently grown our YouTube channel to over 1,000 subscribers,
…LinkedIn page to over 3,000 followers,
…and Instagram page to over 19,000 followers.
Not only are we going to help you identify the BEST platforms for YOUR business, but we’re also going to give you some tips on how to build brand awareness on these platforms to facilitate business growth.
Alright, now let’s talk about social media platforms.
First, before we start throwing out all of the social media platforms out there that you already know, let us give you the criteria to selecting the best social media platforms for your business.
Here are the biggest things you need to keep in mind.
#1 Choose platforms where your audience is located
In order to choose the best social media platforms for your business, you need to understand who your customers are and how they spend their time online.
Specifically, what channels are they using?
Why are they using those channels?
How do they prefer to receive information about your type of products and services?
If you do not already know this, then we highly recommend mapping out a customer avatar first.
A customer avatar is simply an outline of your customer demographics, goals, preferences, challenges, and other psychographics.
The more you understand your customer, the better you can select the best social media platforms to reach and engage them.
#2 Choose platforms that are specific to your content type
There are two types of content – macro content and micro content.
Macro-content is BIG-picture, long-form content. The 3 different types of macro content consists of:
- written content
Therefore, if you have macro content, the best social media platforms to publish that content would be YouTube for video content, Apple Podcasts for Audio, and WordPress for long-form blog content.
Micro-content, on the other hand, is short-form, easy to digest content. Think of micro-content like the pictures you find on your Instagram feeds while you’re scrolling, or short witty tweets on Twitter.
Now, there are several different types of micro-content social media channels like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and so on.
So in order to choose the best social media platforms for your business, you need to pick the ones where your audience is located.
Also, when it comes to Macro vs Micro content, you should keep in mind that Macro content has a much longer shelf-life than Micro content.
For example, a single blog post that we published has been generating 300-400 views per day at LYFE Marketing. If people continued to search for that all year, that single blog post would drive over 100,000 views in 1-year’s time.
Whereas a single Instagram post would be here today and gone and forgotten tomorrow. But at the same time, this content is much easier to create and push-out on a consistent basis.
So keep this in mind as you choose which social media platforms you want to specialize in.
#3 Limit the number of social media platforms you choose to be on
Don’t spread yourself too thin by trying to be on every single social media platform that exists.
Each social media platform is like an art. And you should master the art of one to two platforms before you try to do them all at one time.
Plus, it’s not necessary to be on every platform in the world.
Facebook has 2 BILLION users.
Instagram has 1 BILLION users.
If you can do just one of these platforms very well, you can have astronomical business results.
Last but not least, keep in mind that it takes a lot of work and money to develop a successful social media presence on these platforms. It’s not as simple as setting up a profile and pressing publish on a post.
No, in most cases, you will need to set aside some money to promote your content to your audience to entice them to follow you.
In addition, you’ll need to review the analytics to determine if your content is effective or not.
So in short, as a small business with a limited budget, put all of your eggs in 1 or 2 baskets max to start. Then, consider expanding into other channels.
Alright, so that’s the criteria you need to keep in mind as you select the BEST social media platforms for your business.
Now, let’s go over some specific platforms to help you choose the best platforms for your business.
Keep in mind that there is no “cookie cutter” 1 or 2 best platforms for any business.
However, what we want to do here is make sure you fully understand your options so you can make the best-informed decision for your business.
With that said, let’s start with the basics.
Look, we already know what you’re thinking.
We’ve heard everything from our clients about Facebook.
“Isn’t Facebook dead?”
“My kids don’t even use Facebook anymore.”
And my favorite one…
“I don’t even remember the last time I logged into Facebook. I don’t want to be there!”
Trust us, we get it.
Facebook is not the newest and coolest social media platform.
It has over 2 BILLION monthly ACTIVE users. And when we say active, we mean, 2 BILLION people ACTIVELY use Facebook.
This isn’t our belief. This is a FACT.
3 quarters of Facebook users visit the site on a daily basis, and half visit the site SEVERAL times per day.
Oh and if you thought teenagers aren’t using Facebook, think again. Over half of teenagers use Facebook. And nearly half of people above the age of 46 use Facebook.
A better question would be, who doesn’t use Facebook?
Here’s another one we run by our clients all of the time.
We hear this one all of the time. “I am targeting a high-income, highly educated, professional affluent audience. I don’t want to advertise on Facebook. How about LinkedIn?”
Well, here’s the truth.
According to Pew Research, 74% of people who have college degrees and making above $75,000 per year have Facebook accounts. And only 49% of people making over $75,000 per year have LinkedIn accounts.
It doesn’t matter what business you have, or what you’re selling, it’s hard to find a reason not to be using Facebook to grow your business.
Alright, so let’s move on.
Instagram is another platform that feels like it’s non-negotiable.
Maybe it’s because it’s owned by Facebook, or maybe it’s because it also has another 1 BILLION users.
Instagram is a highly visual platform, which allows your customers to get to know you and your business better.
Many people believe that Instagram profiles are turning into the “unprofessional resume”, providing a quick glimpse into what your brand looks and feels like to newcomers.
This impression can build a positive impression that leads to people buying from you in the future.
Now, let’s look at the hard facts about Instagram.
If you’re targeting a younger demographic, Instagram will be great for you.
72% of all teenagers use Instagram and 67% of all young adults under the age of 30 use Instagram.
You will also find about half of the people under the age of 50 years old on Instagram, and even a quarter of people between the ages of 50-65 on Instagram.
Because of the younger demographic of Instagram users, there are fewer users with college education and high income compared to Facebook.
Only 43% of people with college degrees use Instagram, and only 42% of high-income earners use Instagram on a daily basis.
Because of this, some professionals believe that while Instagram is an exciting platform, you will often find yourself competing for “cheap attention”.
Basically, people are mindlessly scrolling on Instagram and in order to be successful, you’re going to have to be very engaging to capture people’s attention.
Ultimately, Instagram is a great platform to reach consumers at large, but it may not contain the most sophisticated audience for specific industries, like engineering or information technology, for example.
Now let’s move on to the next platform.
LinkedIn got its start as a business and employment-based social media platform. It’s full of professionals across a wide-spectrum of industries, especially B2B companies.
LinkedIn currently boasts just over 300 million users are active on a monthly basis.
So in terms of audience size, it’s 4x smaller than Facebook, and 2x smaller than Instagram.
However, this fact is actually correlated with a major strength behind LinkedIn – its news feed.
Because LinkedIn’s newsfeed is not as competitive as other giants like Facebook and Instagram, businesses are able to reach more of their connections and followers without paying for advertisements.
For context here, because Facebook and Instagram news feeds are so crowded, they rely on specific algorithms and rules to determine if they will actually show your content to your followers.
We know, crazy right?
You’d think that people who chose to follow you would automatically see your content, but no, it simply increases their chances of seeing your content on those platforms.
Anyway, the cool thing about LinkedIn is that it is not as stingy with its news feed. Not yet anyway.
This provides businesses and professionals an opportunity to build massive awareness and engagement on their platform.
Now regarding LinkedIn’s demographics, here are some noteworthy things.
LinkedIn is mostly used by professionals between the ages of 30-49 years of age.
However, about a quarter of professionals above the age of 18-29, which we’d really say 22-29 use LinkedIn. As well as another quarter of people between the ages of 50-64 use LinkedIn on a daily basis.
As mentioned earlier, LinkedIn does have a high-income audience. About half of people making over $75,000/year use LinkedIn on a regular basis.
In addition, about half of people with college degrees use LinkedIn on a regular basis, probably searching for their next job opportunity or seeking to consume professional content.
Ultimately, if you serve businesses or professionals, then LinkedIn should definitely be in the running as a top-contender for social media platforms to choose for your business.
We’ll be honest, we have a love-hate relationship with Twitter.
We were one of the first users on Twitter, and we remember when they robbed popularity and users from Facebook many years ago.
Everyone was blasting their Facebook timelines with statuses that said “follow me on Twitter at XYZ”.
Then, years later, Instagram came around and it seemed that everyone ditched Twitter to join Instagram.
We mean, it was so bad that even Twitter investors rushed to sell their stocks because they thought the social media platform was doomed.
However, since 2016, Twitter has turned things around. Their user growth has been exploding. And, their stock prices have turned around as well.
With all that said, Twitter is a legit social media platform to market your business. And perhaps, underrated by many businesses.
Ok, so what is Twitter?
Twitter is a real-time social media platform.
It’s like sending text messages to the whole world. And it’s one of the only social media platforms where you don’t necessarily have to have a bunch of videos or photos to stand out.
Tweets can be up to 280 characters, which allows you the ability to craft a short, sharp, and concise message. And because it’s limited in characters, it forces you to be creative with what you have to actually say.
So what are the hard stats on Twitter? Here they are:
Twitter has over 330 million active users, so about the same as LinkedIn and once again, nowhere near Facebook and Instagram.
In terms of age, Twitter’s biggest demographic consists of people between the ages of 18-29.
38% of people in their category actively use Twitter, and surprisingly 32% of all teenagers use Twitter as well. You can also find about 26% of its users between the ages of 30-49.
In terms of income and education, Twitter is not the highest on our list here. Only 32% of high-earners use Twitter regularly, and likewise, only 32% of people with college degrees use Twitter regularly.
On another note, it’s also worth noting that Twitter is well-known for its search engine.
Twitter’s search engine gets over 2 billion search queries per day, which may also help your demographic find your business while it’s searching for specific keywords and content.
Now, let’s move on to other search-based social media platforms.
Pinterest is another major search engine, well, we mean social media platform, depending on how you define it.
Most people use Pinterest to FIND inspiration or helpful content. So, if you wanted to try a new cooking recipe, you could jump on Pinterest and type in whatever type of food you’re interested in cooking.
While this is just an example, it’s really how most people use Pinterest. Pinterest is full of home décor, fashion, food, and most importantly, SHOPPING.
Now, here are the stats.
Pinterest has over 322 million monthly active users.
And here’s a new stat we haven’t talked about on- gender.
Pinterest is mostly used by women. In fact, there are 3x more women on Pinterest than men.
But this shouldn’t concern you if your business fits, because when it comes to purchasing decisions around fashion, home décor, and so on, women are the predominant decision makers.
This is backed by the high-income profile that Pinterest has. 41% of people with high incomes use Pinterest on a regular basis.
And 38% of people with college degrees use Pinterest as well.
So if your business primarily targets consumers, especially women, then Pinterest is a hard platform to avoid.
Last but certainly not least, YouTube.
YouTube is arguably the best social media platform that exists.
For one, over 1.9 BILLION people use YouTube on a regular basis. This puts YouTube above Instagram and almost eye-to-eye with Facebook in terms of usage.
But not only is YouTube widely used, but it is also the 2nd largest search engine behind no other than Google.
So not only do you have the ability to reach a broad audience, but you are also able to reach people SEARCHING for you.
If we add all of this to the simple fact that VIDEO is the most preferred type of media amongst consumers, then YouTube becomes even harder to avoid.
So we have 1) 2 billion people use YouTube 2) you can reach people searching for your content and 3) video is the most preferred media format today…
What’s wrong with YouTube?
Well, nothing is fundamentally wrong with it. But it takes a TON of work to get it work.
Not only do you need content, but you need an entire video setup with a camera, lighting, microphones and don’t even get us started on video editing.
In short, YouTube is very effective, but production can be quite expensive if you want to stand out.
With that said, let’s look at some YouTube stats.
In terms of age, people of all ages use YouTube. 85% of teenagers and even 38% of people over the age of 65.
In terms of income, YouTube is heavily used by high-income individuals. 83% of people earning over $75K a year use YouTube regularly.
The same is true for education. 80% of people with college degrees use YouTube.
So in terms of the benefits of YouTube, is arguably the best social media platform for businesses. However, again, there is an astronomical amount of work involved to produce video after video in order to be successful.
Social Media Platforms for Business: Takeaways
Alright, so those are the BIGGEST social media platforms that exist today.
Of course there are newer platforms like SnapChat, TikTok, and so on, but if you’re just getting started, we highly recommend using the platforms we went over today.
Because remember, it’s not about the quantity of platforms, it’s about quality and effectiveness. You want to pick the best 1 or 2 platforms and put your all into it.
With that said, let’s go ahead and wrap-up this post.
Today, we gave you the BEST social media platforms for business.
Ultimately, there is no “perfect” platform that applies to everyone. You need to pick platforms where your audience is located, that are specific to your content type, and limit it to 1-2 platforms.
If you do this, we’re sure you will be able to select the best platforms to reach your audience and grow your business.
So our only question for you is, which platform will you use?
If you need more guidance on how to implement effective social media management for your business, we got you covered. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.