In the past 10 years, social media has evolved into a world of its own. With more than 3.5 billion active users, there now exists more opportunities to interact and connect than ever before. Social media giants like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Pinterest are forever changing the way we think, communicate, and make sense of the world and each other. How should social media marketing react?
The sudden rise of social media has brought many changes to the field of marketing. Brands are creating online identities and establishing relationships with consumers in new ways. Social media is giving brands the opportunity to constantly connect with consumers while still crafting and developing a credible brand image.
Social media is gaining importance in the eyes of marketers. A study done by the Social Media Examiner found that more than 90% of all marketers say that social media marketing has increased the reputation and exposure of their business. It’s no secret the power that having a strong social media plan and presence can accomplish for your brand.
Before diving in and developing social media content, it’s best to first get an understanding of where different audiences are spending their time on social media. Knowing this information will give your brand a better sense of which social platforms to target so you can begin to resonate more strongly with an intended audience.
Facebook is by far the most popular and widely used social network today. With more than 1.79 billion active monthly users, Facebook is where a lot of brands go to advertise and display their messages. Compared to other social networks (Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram), Facebook contains the most mature audience. More than 65% of U.S. adults aged 30-64 say that they are actively using Facebook. Although only 46% of U.S. adults aged 65 and older say they use Facebook, this number is the highest of any other social networking platform proving that older generations are engaging and checking in. Facebook users also tend to be very active. 76% of its users visit the site at least once per day, making it one of the most visited websites on the Internet. In fact, a lot of users check the site an average of 8 times per day! This gives marketers a really great opportunity to push their content to potential viewers. Marketers wanting to use Facebook to advertise also need to be aware of the devices that people are using to load and open Facebook. About half of all of Facebook’s users are only refreshing their feed or updating their status on their mobile device. This implies that creating mobile-friendly content is a key to successful Facebook marketing.
If Facebook is busy capturing the more mature audience, then Twitter is busy gaining the attention of the younger generations. Approximately 40% of all 18-29-year old’s that live in the U.S. tweet and use Twitter relatively consistently. Younger demographics are much more active on Twitter, which makes it a great opportunity for brands that want to target the younger demographic. It’s also important to know that more than 79% of the active accounts on Twitter live outside the United States. If brands are trying to grow their product or brand internationally, then Twitter is a great platform to advertise on because of the large presence of international consumers.
Like Twitter, Instagram attracts the younger crowds. A recent study found that 67% of all U.S. 18-29-year old’s currently have an Instagram account. Marketers can benefit from this information, knowing that this where younger people like to spend their time online. Instagram also has very active and retentive users. More than 60% of their users check the site at least once per day, with many periodically checking more than once. More women tend to use the site than men, but this shouldn’t stop marketers from advertising their brands on Instagram. In fact, 71% of United States businesses already have an Instagram account, proving that it’s a credible marketplace for advertising.
Pinterest is very different from the other social networks because it strongly attracts the women demographic. Research has found that over 83% of U.S. women aged 25-54 are being exposed to Pinterest pins and displays. In two years, the site has also reported a 75% increase in customer postings and pins, showing the immense growth and success of this website. Marketing on Pinterest can be very beneficial for any brand. Almost 75% of Pinterest individuals believe that brands that use Pinterest post meaningful content. This statistic shows that people are constantly taking in brand-related information through the site.
LinkedIn is also a little different from the other social platforms. A lot of people view this site as more professional than the other platforms and see it as a great networking tool. However, marketers can still take advantage of advertising on LinkedIn if they want to try and reach a more knowledgeable and higher-educated audience. Over 50% of Americans that have a college degree use LinkedIn, and it seems to resonate most strongly with 25- to 49-year-old’s that are currently working or in the job market. LinkedIn can also be very efficient for businesses that are looking to market a brand or information to other businesses (B2B).
By analyzing where consumers are spending their time online, marketers can begin to better target messages and ads to those that they want to reach. By serving messages that will connect and resonate better with an intended audience, a brand can begin to build new relationships with their consumers that weren’t possible before. The power of social media is rapidly growing, and it’s time for companies to take advantage of the opportunities that lie in front of them.