Who’s using social media?
– There’s a fair amount of choices when it comes to social media and each requires a significant investment in time to find success. To help you decide where to start, let’s look at the demographic overview of YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. I’ll guide you through the type of user you’ll find and what marketing styles are most appropriate. The data I’ll be sharing with you comes from the Pew Research Center and you can find even more great data at PewInternet.org Today, it feels like it’s impossible to find someone who isn’t on Facebook and that’s probably because it’s the second largest of the major networks, just behind YouTube, with over 68% of US adults having a Facebook account.
Facebook, however, is really a pay-to-play model. At one point, brands would focus on gaining likes as a way to improve the reach of their content. However, Facebook greatly diminished the organic reach for brands. Meaning, if you want someone to see your company update, they either have to visit your company page directly, or you’ll pay to get that message into their News Feed. That said, pay-to-play is okay. With the largest group of users, Facebook’s paid advertising brings some of the best returns on investment in the social media playing field.
Younger users are shifting away from Facebook and joining Instagram or Snapchat to communicate digitally. It’s fairly well split between male and female users. 35% of adults in the US are using Instagram, but the younger demographic is most widely represented. 71% of the 18-to-24-year-old demographic is using Instagram. Snapchat sees similar numbers.27% of adults are on Snapchat, but again, a large majority of the users are between 18 to 24, it’s about 78%.
Now Twitter has around 24% of the adult US population using it and it’s most popular with the 18 through 29 crowd. It’s slightly biased towards women, but not by too much. Twitter is great for short, rapid communication and it tends to be a top choice for consumerslooking to get support or provide a shout-out to brands. Because of its impressive mobile usage, in fact 45% of Twitter users check their feeds multiple times throughout the day, it’s a great platform to use. Twitter requires more time investment than the other networks and its paid advertising platform is still gaining more traction.
Ads are more expensive, but it’s easier to join conversations and search for leads because it’s primarily a public network. LinkedIn, however, has the highest percentage of professionals and it’s skewed more in favor of an older demographic. Over 25% of US adults are on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is completely business focused and a brand presence here may bring a lot of value if you’re in the B2B space. You’ll likely find LinkedIn to be most effective for connecting with key decision makers at other companies.
Their paid advertising platform is among the most expensive in social media, but it’s very successful for the right advertisements. Pinterest has continued to gain popularity. This social network is built on the idea of bookmarking or pinning things that you find around the web. It’s very visual, and the majority of users are young, affluent females. If your brand has a strong visual language, there’s plenty of opportunities on Pinterest. You’ll find a wide range of companies finding success on Pinterest.
Everyone from the coffee shop down the street to Nike. It’s a time investment, and requires building followers who will essentially re-pin your contributions or pin content directly from your website. As you consider where to find your audience on social media, I also recommend taking a look at your competition or businesses in a similar market. Look at what they’re doing, how their engagement appears, and how responsive their audience is.