Blog post by: Kyra Kronberg, Baer Performance Marketing Intern
Social media is no stranger to marketing, but as more businesses jump on, many of them are finding themselves on the wrong platform…which can almost be like talking to a wall. If you’re not communicating with the right audience, not only will you not get the expected response, but your time, energy, and money will all go to waste. Here’s a breakdown of the main social media sites, their purpose, and demographics, so you can develop a social media strategy that generates meaningful conversations and real returns for your business.
With 1 billion active users, Instagram is becoming one of the largest social media platforms. It provides a great opportunity for visual storytelling, which is beneficial for businesses that sell products like food and clothing that need to look visually appealing to sell. There are also many branding opportunities, like hashtags, that can be leveraged. However, because 90% of its users are under the age of 35, you should only put your time and effort into Instagram if you’re trying to reach a younger demographic.
Younger generations love Snapchat! In fact, 69% of all Snapchat users are between the ages 18-25, with a big chunk of the remaining 31% under the age of 18. It’s also worth mentioning that 70% of Snapchat users are female. But with only 5% of businesses using Snapchat for marketing purposes, it’s very hard to calculate the return on investment (ROI). Snapchat has, however, been adding new updates and features, like geo-filtered lenses and video ads, to make the platform more advertiser friendly.
Pinterest is probably one of the most overlooked sites by businesses. The site is used as a content curation tool. Users “pin” ideas that help them get creative or try something new, whether they’re planning a trip to Disney World or collecting home cleaning hacks. Around 76% of Pinterest users are over the age of 30, and 80% are female. Businesses often use the platform to distribute brand and product-related content.
With 2.01 billion users, businesses have been using Facebook for years to post content and interact with Fans. Facebook has made it easy for Business Pages to gain followers, respond to reviews, and engage in various ways with a targeted audience. Younger generations are, however, shifting to other social media platforms, like Snapchat and Instagram. At the moment, 61% of users are between the ages of 18-34, and 56% are male, but its average age is on the rise.
Many businesses choose to market through Twitter because of its fast-paced nature, more focused communication (with its 280 character limit) and simple, no-frills approach to social networking. Its users’ ages also tend to be more evenly spread out, with 36% being 18-20, 23% being 30-49, and 21% being 50-64.
Because YouTube is search dependent, it’s challenging to establish a channel and create content that a sizable audience would consistently keep up with. Several businesses have turned to “brand deals” with established influencers on the site. On YouTube, there are thousands of creators with various audience sizes and demographics who create new content regularly. Businesses looking to effectively market through an influencer will need to find a content developer that reaches the same demographic they’re looking to target. Even though you wouldn’t have control over the content itself, if you find a creator with the right audience, YouTube could prove to be one of the most successful forms of social media marketing.
Know that social media is always evolving—so your business’ social strategy also needs to be ever-changing. By regularly evaluating your analytics, you’ll find it easier to engage your audience and increase the ROI of your social media marketing.