As social media continues to change the way customers and businesses communicate, understanding which platforms resonate with specific demographics becomes necessary. According to BackLinko, there are nearly 3.96 billion users on social media today, equating to more than half of the world’s population. In 2020, it was estimated the average person has 8.6 social media accounts, many of which are on well-known platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, TikTok, LinkedIn and more, according to Hootsuite.
As a business, how do you decide where to share content and connect with target customers? Each social network boasts distinctive benefits for different types of businesses and their respective target audiences. With an emphasis on six of the most common social media platforms, let’s talk about which social media websites will best suit your business and customers.
According to Oberlo, 80 million small businesses around the world created Facebook businesses pages in 2018. Making a Facebook page for your business helps build an engaged digital audience and a robust brand voice. It also connects your business with customers interested in the products or services you offer. Before you create a page, it is crucial to understand some of Facebook’s key demographics to determine if it is the right platform to promote your business on.
According to Hootsuite, Facebook is home to approximately 2.74 billion active monthly users; 1.82 billion active daily users. When it comes to age demographics, 13- to 17-year-olds comprise 5.6 percent of Facebook’s advertising audience, 18- to 24-year-olds comprise 24 percent, 25- to 34-year-olds comprise 32 percent, 35- to 44-year-olds comprise 17.1 percent, 45- to 54 year-olds comprise 10.4 percent and users ages 55 and older comprise 10.5 percent.
It is also important to note 56 percent of Facebook users are male, making men the biggest demographic on the social media platform globally. For location demographics, the majority of Facebook users also live in rural or suburban areas.
With Facebook’s advertising growth rate continually increasing, the platform provides a great audience engagement tool for brands. Vox recommends businesses providing services to customers across many different age groups should post content on the platform, allowing them to share their offerings with a larger audience.
In addition to the platform’s photo and video sharing features, Instagram recently added the Reels feature, allowing users to create, edit and share 15-second to one-minute video clips with music.
According to Hootsuite statistics on Instagram, the social site had over 1.2 billion active visitors in 2019. Hootsuite also estimates 90 percent of users followed at least one business or brand in 2019. 90 million users also clicked on product tags on the site each month in 2018. With an array of visually captivating features, ample opportunities exist for businesses to advertise products and grow their brands on Instagram.
Instagram’s largest advertising audience comprises of users between the ages of 25 to 34. However, it’s important to note the younger the Instagram user, the more likely they are to use the social network multiple times a day. More than 67 percent of 18- to 24-year-olds login to Instagram more than once a day. Older audiences also typically don’t resonate with the platform leading to only eight percent of adults over the age of 65 using Instagram, compared with 46 percent for Facebook.
Gender demographics are spread fairly evenly with 51 percent of Instagram’s ad audience identifying as female and 49 percent identifying as male. When it comes to areas of interest among users, the top three categories include travel (45 percent), music (44 percent) and food and drink (43 percent), according to Hootsuite.
Based on Instagram’s audience demographics, Vox recommends businesses in e-commerce or those targeting millennial or Generation Z customers should integrate Instagram content into social media campaigns. Travel and lifestyle brands would also greatly benefit from using Instagram as a marketing tool. The highly visual components of Instagram Shop allow customers to browse directly from the app and get a better sense of your business’ aesthetic and products.
Twitter currently has more than 340 million users, 166 million daily active users and is the 13th most used social media platform in the world, according to Hootsuite.
Hootsuite also reports approximately 33 million active users live in the United States and represent the platform’s largest advertising group. The majority of these users also reside in cities or suburban areas.
Of the 33 million active U.S. users, millennials comprise the largest age demographic on the site. According to Hootsuite, 44 percent of U.S. adults between the ages of 18 to 24 use Twitter. For gender demographics, Twitter comprises 50 percent male and 50 percent female users in the United States.
Based on Twitter’s user demographics, Vox advises businesses targeting millennial audiences or customers residing in urban areas would benefit from posting and marketing on this social platform.
LinkedIn is a social media platform designed for businesses and business professionals. The site allows users to post job openings, apply for jobs, offer career advice and connect with other experts and specialists in respective fields.
Worldwide, LinkedIn has more than 675 million users, according to research from Hootsuite. In the United States, more than 154 million workers created profiles, with 12 percent of U.S. users visiting the site daily.
30 percent of U.S. LinkedIn users live in urban areas while suburban users trail closely behind at 27 percent. Also noteworthy, a majority of LinkedIn’s U.S. users earn more than $75,000 a year, with almost half working in upper management positions. 50 percent of U.S. LinkedIn users also report they earned one or more college degrees.
Based on these key demographics, Vox recommends businesses working directly with other businesses should market themselves on the platform. In addition, LinkedIn is ideal for companies searching to hire new staff or recruit business partners, volunteers or board members.
YouTube comprises more than 2 billion logged-in monthly users, making it the second-most-used social media site. According to Hootsuite, users across the globe watch a total of one billion hours of clips and videos every day.
Hootsuite’s report found that YouTube is most popular with users 35 years of age and under. It is estimated that 77 percent of 15- to-35-year-olds in the U.S. are YouTube users. On average, users over the age of 18 will spend approximately 42 minutes on YouTube daily. 80 percent of U.S. parents reported they allow their children under the age of 11 to access and use the website.
Unlike other social media platforms, YouTube does not require viewers to create an account to watch videos. This allows content to acquire more views, likes, comments and shares.
Based on this information, Vox recommends businesses offering services that could be demonstrated with engaging, instructional videos would benefit from YouTube. YouTube also offers the potential to reach large, international audiences since not only subscribers can view and share your content, but also anyone with internet access can follow along.
As one of the newest social media platforms, TikTok is a Generation Z dominated short-form video sharing app. Users are able to create and share 15-second to one-minute videos as well as connect with other creators online.
According to HubSpot, there are approximately 26.5 million monthly active users in the United States alone, with 60 percent of users between the ages of 16 and 24. The average user will open the app around eight times a day, spending approximately 52 minutes browsing TikTok on a daily basis. The platform also claims the average user spends about five minutes on the app each time they open it up throughout the day, longer than average sessions on Snapchat and Instagram.
HubSpot reports TikTok claimed $3.5 million from in-app user purchases in 2018 and offers TikTok creators five advertising tiers aimed at big brands. According to AdEspresso, these options include in-feed video ads, branded hashtag challenges, brand takeovers, TopView ads and branded effects.
Since TikTok is still a relatively new platform and more specific demographics and marketing tactics have not been reported yet, this leaves a lot of potential and space for brands to get creative and develop new methods on their own and even go viral. Vox recommends businesses wanting to target Generation Z specifically should create captivating photo and video content on TikTok for marketing purposes.
Each social media platform listed above contains distinctive features and user demographics. Depending on your business’s marketing goals and target audience(s), you will most likely be active on multiple social media sites. To find the platforms best suited for your brand as well as creating and executing a sound social media strategy, contact The Vox Agency here.
By Patricia Grod