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How to choose the right social media for your business

One of the most common conversations we have with clients is how to choose the right social media for their business. People can get overwhelmed trying to figure out which one is best to use. With over a dozen major social media platforms to choose from, how do you choose the right one for your business?

When you are choosing the social media platforms you will use, you first need to know who your target customer is. You also need to consider the demographics of your ideal customers.

Each social media platform has its own user profile. They each have certain age groups that use them. Some have more diverse race or ethnic backgrounds. Others have more males than females and vice versa. Different site users have different median household income averages and educational achievements. Some sites have more users that live in cities, others have more in rural areas. And so on.

So, first, you need to define who your audience is. Then you pick the sites that your audience is likely on. This ensures you are talking in the right place, to the right people.

In this post, we are going to focus on the most popular social sites right now in 2020.

Facebook

People are often under the impression that “Facebook is dead.” Wrong. It is very much alive and is consistently in the top three most popular sites in the U.S. It is far above the ones that are behind it in terms of the number of people that use it. However, the average user is over the age of 45. Many of them are older than that. Very few are teenagers and young adults.

It’s a good fit for you if…

Your business targets a more mature crowd. Since Facebook users tend to be older – those that came from a generation that grew up with newspapers delivered to their homes – they are more willing to read text. This means you can make longer posts than you might on a platform with a younger audience.

Instagram

This platform is also consistently in the top three for number of users in the United States. The largest group of users on Instagram are under the age of 40, many of them in their mid-20’s. Because it is a younger crowd, they tend to be more visually engaged. This means it is a good place to use imagery and, even better, video. The demographics on Instagram tend to have more variation in ethnicity and race, and a lot of users live in urban areas.

It’s a good fit for you if…

You want to reach a younger than middle-aged crowd. It is a good place to use video to capture your audience’s attention, even if it’s just you talking for 2-3 minutes. Instagram is among one of the top sites for converting people that watch video into paying customers.

YouTube

YouTube may not seem like a traditional social media site, but it is consistently one of the top three social sites in the U.S. Nearly two-thirds of all adults use it to search for answers to questions, how-to videos, and tutorials. Because of this, it is also one of the most popular search engines. Males tend to use it more than females, but unlike any other site we talk about here, it has a large number of users from all age groups 18-64. It also doesn’t have a notable variance in income, education, or location of its users.

It’s a good fit for you if…

You want to reach large audience of any age using video. YouTube users are inquisitive and willing to learn, so using this platform to showcase your expertise by giving tips or hacks is a great way to gain a following. It is an excellent platform to advertise on by placing in-app ads. YouTube is owned by Google which means ads will be shown on YouTube, Google, and their affiliate platforms.

Twitter

Twitter is a platform designed to “tweet” short snippets of content that are meant to contribute to a conversation. For this reason, many organizations that have a lot to talk about – educational institutions, government agencies, sports teams, or entertainment magazines – use it to get lots of information out a little at a time. This platform tends to have more males than females, and has a large group of people with college degrees using it.

It’s a good fit for you if…

You plan to tweet multiple times a day, every day. Seriously. This is how the algorithms are designed to be stimulated. Twitter attracts people who are willing to engage in debate and are passionate about politics and consuming news, so the more you use it, the better off you will be.

Pinterest

Pinterest is an interesting social site because it is also one of the most popular search engines in the world. If you pay attention, you will notice that when you do a Google search, for example, the top 10 results will often contain one or more Pinterest boards. This means the content on Pinterest is highly findable and can allow you to expand your reach quickly. People who use Pinterest tend to have a higher household income than those using other social sites.

It’s a good fit for you if…

Your business targets women. This is one of the only platforms with over two-thirds of the users being women. Because of the amount of women on the site, it also means it is full of household purchasers since women commonly buy goods for their homes. Pinterest is dominated by creative, crafty people. There are a plethora of DIYers who look for things they can make on their own.

LinkedIn

It’s no secret that LinkedIn has a lot of people promoting themselves and their services. It’s a platform that acts as an online resume for many people, and people tend to use it to advance their current situation. That said, the average user on LinkedIn makes nearly double the national average household income. The bulk of its users have a college degree or higher. Many of its users are executives, leaders, and businesses owners that make decisions and have buying power behind them.

It’s a good fit for you if…

You want to connect with customers willing to pay for premium services. It is also a good place to be if you are looking to network with people that partake in philanthrapy and charitable giving. This means, if you have a nonprofit that needs donors, LinkedIn is a good place to be. If you are looking for an investor or business partner, this is also a great reason to use LinkedIn.

Snapchat

Snapchat is designed for a visually engaged audience. The biggest group of users on this platform are in their 20s or younger. Users make video shorts, add filters to enhance photos, and use storytelling to connect with their network. It has an even split of males and females who “snap” about everyday life moments. Almost none of the users are in their 50’s or older.

It’s a good fit for you if…

Your products are targeting youth, especially teens. If your business promotes educational opportunities, Snapchat could be a good platform to use or advertise on.

TikTok

Of all the social sites we have talked about, TikTok is the newest, coming to the U.S. just under 5 years ago. It is also the fastest growing social media network right now and was among the top 10 most downloaded apps in 2019. The biggest age group of users is similar to Snapchat, many in their 20’s. It also has a large number of teenagers. TikTok is one of the only platforms we have talked about that has the bulk of its users in other countries, many in China, Japan, and India.

It’s a good fit for you if…

You are targeting youth. It is also a good choice if you have an international brand and want to reach a global audience. TikTok is a video-based platform with a heavy emphasis on music and movement. Using this platform means you will be creating multimedia content.

Now that you know WHO is using what, keep in mind…

When you are choosing social media platforms for your business, choose a few and use them well. Don’t try to be on ALL of them. It is better to choose a couple and make them do work for you, then to spread yourself thin and not reap the benefits of any of them. We see businesses often trying to be on every social media site, and unless they have a dedicated position to manage all those sites daily, they tend to not use any of them well. This, of course, defeats the purpose of having the sites at all.

Click here to learn 5 Things You Can Do to Brand Your Social Media.

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