The social media world is huge, with networks boasting hundreds of millions (even billions!) of active monthly users. Each site has its own style and rules, which can make it difficult for brands to get started with social media marketing.
Here, we do a breakdown some of the most popular sites and the best way to start making them work for your brand.
Active monthly users: 1.79 billion.
Demographics: Facebook has users of every age and gender, but women do slightly favor the site, with 76 percent of women with Internet access using it, compared to only 66 percent of their male peers. Young people use the site more than middle-aged individuals and seniors.
The best place to start with marketing your business through Facebook is by actually having a Facebook presence to begin with. A Facebook presence gives your audience a place to interact with your business. They can post their experiences with your product, and interactions between your users on your page are likely to show up on the news feeds of others.
Other ways to utilize the site for your business include:
- Using SEO and keywords in your Facebook description. SEO is important for more than just your Web site, and utilizing means your page showing up on search engines.
- Using videos. Most Facebook research shows that short videos make more of an impact when it comes to having your content seen. From the popular livestream feature on the site to short videos demoing your products, there are many ways to do this.
- Encouraging liking and sharing. Ask your customers to share their post with a friend who needs your product or service. Encourage them to tag a friend who could benefit from your software. Hold a contest where likes and shares are the methods of entry.
Active monthly users: 317 million.
Demographics: Twitter’s user base is comprised mainly of young people, with 37 percent of its users aged 18-29 and another 25 percent aged 30-49. Men have a slight edge with 24 percent of men who have internet access microblogging on the site, compared to only 21 percent of women. College-educated adults use the site more than those with less education.
Twitter is one of the online social arenas where influencer marketing plays big. Using the Twitter list feature, you can easily keep track of your ideal audience’s influencers and make it a point to interact with each of them daily. Utilizing the tag feature can also help as long as you don’t abuse it.
Other ways to use Twitter effectively include:
- Tweeting often. Tweeting often keeps you relevant, and without regular tweets, followers can fall off. New followers may avoid you thinking your account is inactive. Try to tweet at least once a day.
- Interacting back. If you get mentioned on Twitter, try to at least “like” the response so your audience knows you’re listening. You also play off their own desire to get noticed if they know you might retweet something they do. Respond when appropriate, and deal with any disgruntled customers quickly and courteously.
- Utilizing hashtags. Use popular hashtags for your product or service so that users can find you if they are looking. Also, try using trending hashtags when they fit in with your brand’s image. Twitter users often click on popular hashtags to see what’s being said within the tag, and having tweets from your company there could get you noticed.
Active Monthly Users: 600 million.
Demographics: Women edge out men on Instagram with 29 percent of online women using the photo-sharing service compared to 22 percent of men. Young people lead the way with 53 percent of adults aged 18-29 sharing images.
Hashtags rule Instagram more than any other social media site. The photo-sharing giant allows you to use as many as you like, and unlike other sites which limit you on the number you can use, you can pack your Instagram photos with relevant hashtags, increasing the likelihood that your post will get in front of the eyes of the people you want it to.
Other ways to use Instagram to market your brand include:
- Cross-promoting. Do you sell makeup brushes? Cross-promoting with a cosmetics company or makeup artist might help you get your product in front of more eyes. If you sell design software, partnering with graphic artists may help you get noticed.
- Targeting your link. “Link in bio” is a popular way to get users to a Web site or product page you choose. Make posts related to your product or service, use the link in your bio to send them to a page specifically tailored to what you shared. This has a great impact that a simple link to your main Web site or store.
- Posting great content often. Instagram is a largely image-based site, which means the photos, videos, and graphics you post should be aesthetically pleasing. You don’t have to be the Ansel Adams of the Internet, but everything you post should at least be clean and in-focus. Just like Twitter, you should keep your account updated and active.
Active Monthly Users: 150 million.
Demographics: Women hold a staggering edge over men on Pinterest. Data shows 42 percent of online women have Pinterest accounts, whereas only 13 percent of men do. Usage is pretty evenly spread between adults 18-64, with the 18-29 demographic having just a few points over their older counterparts.
Pinterest’s strength lies on the board. Even casual users of the site have at least one board floating around. Create a board that updates with your products or blog posts so that your audience can follow it, putting frequent updates from your company right on their feed when they visit. Data shows that Pinterest drives referrals even better than Google.
- Making images on your site Pinterest-friendly. We see these all the times, especially on recipe and craft blogs: images made specifically for pinning. By creating quality images or image collages that convey a specific message, you give your customers something they can easily share.
- Promoting your pins. While we all want to reach our audiences organically, sometimes shelling out for a little promotion is worth it. Try using Pinterest’s promoted pin feature to drive traffic to a post or new product.
Active Monthly Users: 301 million
Demographics: Data shows 60 percent of Snapchat users are under 25, with 23 percent yet to graduate high school. 18-24-year-olds make up the largest group on the sharing app at 37 percent. Only 2 percent of users are over the age of 55. Snapchat itself does not release data on the gender of its users, but research shows that women use the app more frequently than men.
The casual nature of Snapchat makes it the ideal place to add personality to your brand. Share images and videos that showcase the humanity of your company so that your audience forms a more personal connection with your product or service. Whether it’s videos of your manufacturing warehouse or images of your interns enjoying pizza day in the break room, Snapchat is the platform for showing your brand’s heart.
Other great ways to utilize the popular sharing app include:
- Sharing live events. From election primaries to sports to fashion week, Snapchat users have shared and viewed it all. If there’s something relevant to your audience that you can live-share via the app, take advantage.
- Partnering with influencers. We’ve talked a few times about Snapchat takeovers, and we’ll do it again. Why? Because inviting influencers to take charge of your Snapchat is a fantastic way to raise awareness of your company while gaining a larger audience.
Social media may seem like an overwhelming array of different sites, but with a few simple tips and some clever strategies, you can easily make your social media accounts work for you. Use the sign-up box to the right to speak with our expert marketing team about your brand’s online impact.