Today, social media rules the world and has become a must-have for advertisers to communicate with consumers. Nearly half of the worldwide population uses social networks, and this number only continues to increase. During COVID-19, more and more people were in lockdown at home. As a result, they started to spend more time on the Internet, especially social networking sites. That’s why multiple brands have leaned on social media advertising.
Before implementing social media in your advertising campaign, you should have a clear vision of who your target audience is and where you can find it. You can have an incredible product, but that won’t matter if you deliver it to the wrong audience. When you know what and where your target audience is, it will help you figure out which platforms to focus on.
Let’s look at the most popular social media platforms in the world and who advertisers can find there.
Facebook is the largest social network in the world with vast opportunities for businesses. Its audience reaches 2.7 billion monthly active users, and nearly three-quarters of them are visiting the social networking site daily. The social media platform provides advertisers with lots of available inventory and has a huge reach across all ages.
Facebook user base differs from other social media. If some networks have more specific audience profiles, Facebook users are quite diverse. Advertisers should consider that Facebook may not be a good platform for reaching millennials and Gen Z, but it’s still the primary network for mature audiences such as middle-aged parents, for instance.
Due to Facebook’s huge reach and non-specific audience, it is a suitable platform for B2C and B2B advertisers. So, every business can enter this social media network. However, it’s fair to mention that Facebook can be an excellent choice for app install advertising campaigns and can produce great results for feed-based e-commerce.
Instagram has witnessed the transformation from the simple photo and video sharing app to a popular advertising channel with dozens of new tools for advertisers. As of 2020, it has a billion monthly active users, and nearly half of them use the platform every day. As Instagram became a part of Facebook, it has quite similar targeting options and the majority of ad formats. But this social network is all about creativity. It provides advertisers with a variety of possibilities to reach their target audience with visually appealing content.
Instagram has a bit of a younger and less diverse audience than Facebook. The social network is a better platform for reaching young adults who are most likely to make a purchase on the app. However, while there are obviously users who have tighter budgets, the ability to connect with two-thirds of the demographic with average and high incomes is a huge asset.
As Instagram is a more casual social media that focuses on visual content, it can be an effective tool for B2C advertisers. The platform performs better for businesses with a wide range of products and services that lend themselves to photos or videos. That’s why the leading industries on Instagram are media and digital tech, fashion, beauty, food, and sports goods.
Twitter has grown to a huge social media platform that comprises 330 million active monthly users, with nearly half of them visiting daily. This social network positions itself as a suitable platform for content related to news, events, and product launches. The good news is that Twitter is an underutilized platform in advertising. So, it might be a good option for marketers, while competition on other social media platforms is tight.
Twitter has a highly engaged and wide audience base. Just like Facebook, it comprises more mature subscribers with higher shares of average and high-income users.
Twitter is an effective social media for both B2B and B2C companies. Nevertheless, it is considered to be a more informal platform. Most e-commerce companies use Twitter for creating brand awareness and promoting specific products. Twitter also reports that almost 70% of users purchase from small and medium-sized businesses because they saw the product or service on the platform.
Snapchat is a highly visual social media like Instagram and TikTok. Ads on Snapchat look like news stories and have a five-times higher swipe-up rate than comparable social media platforms.
Snapchat is an effective platform for advertisers who want to reach teenagers and young adults with highly engaging and interactive content. Millennials were among the first Snapchat adopters and are still loyal users. One more thing that helps Snapchat to stand out is that nearly 38% of Snapchat’s user base don’t have Instagram accounts. That’s why it may be difficult for advertisers to reach these users on other social media.
Snapchat doesn’t suit all businesses. For B2B companies targeting professional and high-income audiences, Snapchat won’t be the best platform due to its relatively young audience. If the advertiser is oriented to millennials or Gen Z and is looking for new creative ways to interact, this social media will perform fruitfully.
Today, TikTok is on the rise. Due to its viral growth, more advertisers desire to enter the platform to reach a younger audience. Starting from the simple short videos sharing app, TikTok has moved forward with its self-serve advertising platform that operates in a similar way to Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat. Despite recent political debates about the banning of TikTok, it was decided that the platform will stay, for now.
TikTok has an extremely loyal and active audience and is called “the defining app of Gen Z.” It shows a large user retention percentage in comparison to the average retention rate of other social networks. TikTok is a dream ticket for advertisers to catch the female millennial and Gen Z audience.
As video ad formats are gaining popularity, TikTok has massive potential for advertisers. The short 15-second video format is suitable to access the app during users’ fragmented spare time. As well as Snapchat, TikTok is not the best decision for B2B advertisers. Due to its light and interactive format, the audience is highly engaged in content related to beauty, fashion, food, sport, media, and entertainment, especially music.
LinkedIn is a golden ticket for B2B companies. Its audience with 690 million active users of highly engaged professionals makes it the best place to share business content. LinkedIn suits not every business at all. It may be a poor choice for e-commerce advertisers. Here the audience is more responsive to B2B content. LinkedIn performs better for industries such as IT, health care, education, retail, computer software, and financial services.
The LinkedIn user base is quite different from other major platforms like Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. Here advertisers can reach a more educated, professional, and mature audience. LinkedIn is especially popular among college graduates and users with the highest disposable income. The majority of users are senior-level influencers and are in decision-making positions. LinkedIn is a good platform for brands that are looking to position themselves as leaders within their industries.
Pinterest is more than a simple social network; it’s more like a search engine. The platform is perfect for product discovery that gives advertisers the chance to build brand awareness. The variety of advertising formats is constantly expanding, such as video, carousels, along with support for shopping feeds.
Among all social networks, Pinterest has the widest female audience. It comprises relatively wealthy and well-educated users for whom shopping is the priority. Pinterest allows advertisers to capture impulsive purchasers who are browsing without a specific product in mind.
Pinterest is preferable for B2C content and is an effective platform for frequently changing industries such as food, fashion, beauty, architecture, and home décor. In terms of content consumption, the majority of users actively engage with home content such as decorating, renovating, and landscaping.
Reddit is a social media platform oriented to community building and online discussions. Its users connect via the forum “subreddit” that is dedicated to a specific topic. Brand advertisers have an opportunity to target an audience through discussions of the topics that are related to their industry. Reddit offers customized experiences as users can pick content related to their interests.
Reddit allows advertisers to access highly engaged and niche communities and might be an effective platform to reach relatively wealthy and educated young men. Therefore, ad campaign strategies could be similar to LinkedIn or Pinterest.
Reddit can suit both B2B and B2C companies. It might be a good solution for computer software, IT, gaming, entertainment, and health care businesses. Here small e-commerce companies would have an advantage over big corporations.
VKontakte is one of the largest and most popular social media platforms across Russia and Eastern Europe. It comprises nearly 97 million active monthly users. Though some experts mention the decline of the social network and the decrease in trust, users still use the platform for business, communication, and entertainment. VKontakte is an effective network for advertisers to reach Russian-speaking audiences, especially those who don’t appear on Facebook and Instagram. According to statistics, 11.2 million VKontakte users don’t use these social media sites.
VKontakte’s audience is relatively young but is able to pay. Since this social media is more for communication and entertainment purposes, it suits more B2C than B2B companies. VKontakte users are especially responsive to fashion, health, gadgets, and tourism advertising.
WeChat is a Chinese multi-purpose app both for leisure and businesses. The app has expanded to the “super app” with an added social media platform and mobile payment functions. WeChat allows people to read the news, play games, share photos and videos, read articles, make payments, book a taxi, etc. The app is extremely popular in China, where more than a billion accounts are registered.
The increasing popularity of WeChat drives numerous brands to invest heavily in WeChat advertising. Due to its multi-purpose approach and a quite mature audience, the platform suits both B2B and B2C advertisers. The key WeChat sectors are fashion, education, finance, e-commerce, and entertainment.