Social Media usage has exploded in popularity over the last decade. It is now used by billions of people, including businesses as an alternative form of marketing. There are several social media marketing platforms, each having some differences.
Each platform is different when it comes to the type of content you post. Some are more focused on photos while others lean towards videos or written posts. The audience of each platform differs and thus you should have a platform where you can reach the most of your target audience.
To get an insight into social media marketing have a look at the paragraphs below. We have broken down the basic functionality of the most popular platforms.
What Is Social Media Marketing?
Social media marketing means using social media platforms to connect with a target audience with the intention of building your brand, increasing sales, and driving website traffic.
Creating engaging and useful content for social media pages, interacting with your followers, checking your stats, and running ads are a few aspects of what all goes into social media marketing.
The birth of social media marketing has its roots in traditional publishing.
Trading firms were advertising and giving value to their content on social media in order to increase traffic to their websites and, possibly, sales.
On the other hand, social networking has evolved into more than just a way of spreading knowledge.
Social networking is used by businesses in a variety of forms nowadays.
For example, a company concerned about what is being shared and talked about its products will monitor social media interactions and engage with specific mentions.
Analytic tools can be used by a company that needs to track its social media performance to inspect its reach, engagement, and sales on the site.
A company that wants to reach a particular audience on a wide scale might consider utilizing influencers or highly targeted social media ads.
Types Of Social Media Marketing Platforms
There are several types of social media marketing platforms available.
The most popular are unsurprisingly Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and TikTok.
While all of them enable effective communication to millions of people they all have different purposes.
For instance, LinkedIn tends to be more formal and politically correct while Facebook lies on the more informal side and is more authentic.
Instagram is quite similar to Facebook when it comes to functionality and interaction with others but is somehow more spontaneous than Facebook because of its simplicity and minimalist design.
On the other side, YouTube offers fewer opportunities for bespoke interaction with customers but enables you to reach a wide audience with ultra HD videos.
Pinterest is leaned towards high-quality photo sharing.
TikTok is rapidly growing in popularity as a short video sharing platform.
With that being said we can conclude that each platform is unique and that you should have a different marketing approach for the different platforms.
Benefits Of Marketing On Social Media Channels?
There are several benefits of social media marketing, namely, it increases brand awareness, inbound traffic, brand loyalty, and is cost-effective.
Better Brand Awareness
Social networking channels are one of the most cost-effective digital marketing tools for syndicating content and increasing a company’s visibility.
Implementing a social media strategy would greatly increase your brand image because you will be engaging with a wide community of consumers.
Increasing Incoming Traffic
Social media marketing is another branch of the entire marketing engine and can increase your traffic beyond other traditional forms of digital marketing.
With social media being a popular virtual location to spend time, advertising and providing useful information to your target audience can open up larger streams of traffic to your websites.
Perhaps the most cost-effective aspect of an advertisement campaign is social media marketing.
Almost all social media platforms offer a free profile creation and sign-up process.
Additionally, any paid advertising on social media is relatively inexpensive in comparison to other forms of marketing.
Improved Brand Loyalty
Having a loyal customer base is a crucial aspect of all companies’ key goals.
Given that brand loyalty and customer satisfaction are always connected, it is important to interact with customers regularly and build a bond with them.
Your brand’s goods and advertising ads aren’t the only things you can promote on social media.
Differences Between The Main Social Media Networks?
All social media networks have their own specialized function that differs from the rest of social media platforms and attracts different audiences.
Below is a small list of popular social media platforms and their unique characteristics.
Facebook is a platform for companies to share photographs, updates, and general information with those who follow or “like” them.
Fans of your company visit your Facebook page to learn about what’s going on with your company, see photos of what’s going on, and learn about upcoming events.
Instagram is more about photo sharing.
Users can only interact with your posts through liking or commenting.
Privately replying to your stories is also possible.
Instagram recently launched IGTV where you can currently share videos longer than 1 minute.
YouTube is a fantastic way to get the company’s name out there.
Video content is much more entertaining and shareable than text content, and it also helps your Google search ranking.
Interactions are more limited via YouTube but you get to upload high-quality videos of any length.
Since Pinterest is a more lighthearted and friendly image sharing platform, the picture you share must be high-quality and eye-catching in order to stand out in your feed.
LinkedIn is distinct from the other social media platforms in that it is geared toward business and professionals.
LinkedIn is mostly used by users to highlight their work experience and professional opinions.
With over 500 million monthly users, TikTok is a popular platform to share videos 15 – 60 seconds long.
TikTok users like fun content and advertisers are finding numerous ways to take advantage of exciting options for audiences to interact with your brand.
Why Choose One Platform Over The Other?
Each platform is used differently by people so you should choose the platform which offers the most suitable features for you to get the most out of your audience.
Since the whole point of social media marketing is to connect you with your ideal audience, it is not a good idea to use a site that your target audience does not use.
Research which platforms your target audience likes and reach out to them on the social media platforms they already use.
Pew Research provides even more extensive updated social media demographic information
Sprout Social published social media demographics in their 2021 updated report and found specific information on target audience usage for each popular social platform.
As discussed above each platform focuses on a specific type of content and the platform you choose should be leaned towards what you will post.
If you are going to post mainly pictures, you’ll want to go for Instagram or Pinterest.
On the contrary, if you are going to post videos you’ll look at YouTube.
Some marketing solutions may require the use of multiple platforms to reach different audiences are different stages of the buying process.