Social media and your business: where should you invest your time?

Insight

There are a lot of social media platforms out there and they’re changing constantly.

This can make it difficult for businesses to work out where they should focus their social media efforts.

The most important thing to remember is that building a successful social media channel takes time and dedication. Once you have a channel and strategy, you need to commit to it otherwise you won’t see any return on your investment.

Whether you’re just starting out or re-evaluating the channels you already have, ask yourself three questions:

  1. Are you marketing to consumers (B2C), marketing to businesses (B2B) or both?
  2. What is your target audience’s persona (age, gender, interests)?
  3. What is your overall goal?

Knowing the answers to these questions will help you choose the right platforms. These are good questions to ask yourself at the start of a new campaign to determine which channels are most suitable.

We’ve put together a quick overview of the top five social media platforms, their key demographics and a few tips for using them.

Facebook

Overview: With 2.38 billion monthly active users worldwide, Facebook is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world. People use Facebook to stay connected with friends and family, to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them.

Audience: Facebook has 16 million monthly active users in Australia. The large potential audience makes it a great tool for B2C businesses but it can also be effective for B2B communication.

Recent trends show that younger audiences (13 to 25 year olds) are moving away from the platform so it’s best suited to content aimed at audiences 25 years or older.

Tips for use: Facebook is one of the easiest channels to maintain because you can use content from just about any other platform, you can share links from your website, images from your Instagram or videos from your YouTube channel.

Like most social media platforms, Facebook encourages you to share video content but they have lots of post formats including polls, photo albums, product tags, and watch parties which make it easier to build a community on your page and show a bit of character.

LinkedIn

Overview: LinkedIn is a network of professionals and businesses connecting to share ideas and sell products or services, making it a must have for B2B marketing.

Audience: The primary audience is 25 to 55 years old, but university graduates are also a key demographic.

Tips for use: Because LinkedIn is used in a work context, the content that’s shared on LinkedIn tends to be more formal. Any content that positions your business, demonstrates company values or informs, educates, and inspires readers is suited to LinkedIn; think LinkedIn articles, infographics or videos.

LinkedIn does have a place in the B2C channel mix. Placing your ideas, innovations or values in front of the right professional segment can be a valuable marketing exercise. LinkedIn can also be used by B2C organisations to recruit new employees.

Instagram

Overview: Instagram is a B2C platform. It’s a virtual look book for your business. It gives you the best of both worlds with the feed providing a place for polished content and Instagram Stories making room for raw, playful, behind the scenes content.

Audience: Instagram’s audience is younger (13 to 29 years old) and has a higher proportion of female users compared to other platforms.

Tips for use: Share posts with high quality images or short videos and concise captions and make use of hashtags to help extend the reach of the post. Instagram has also developed some ecommerce features which allow customers to buy products without leaving the app but you’ll need an Instagram Business account to use these features which means you’ll also need a Facebook page.

Twitter

Overview: Twitter is suitable for B2B and B2C audiences.It’s not as widely used in Australia as it is in other countries but the number of businesses that are using Twitter as one of their regular communication channels is increasing.

Audience: A typical Twitter user is an 18 to 29 year old male. Men make up almost two thirds of Twitter users in Australia.

Tips for use: Twitter limits you to 280 characters per tweet so content needs to be to the point. This makes the platform great for quick updates, breaking news, or even teaser campaigns.

If you’re a business you should include some form of media (e.g. image, GIF, video) in your tweet as it increases engagement.

YouTube

Overview: YouTube is the second most used search engine in the world after Google which reflects the breadth of content on the platform.

Audience: Given the sheer amount of content on YouTube, the user demographics are broad. Users are just as likely to be female as they are male, they’re more likely to have a university degree and are typically aged 18 to 44.

Tips for use: Instructional or explainer videos, product reviews, and team interviews are just some of the types of content you can host on YouTube. You can also use it as a library to host campaign videos.

Getting the most out of social media isn’t about being everywhere. It’s about being in the right place and showing your content to the right people and taking advantage of all of the features a platform has to offer.

If you need an easy way to stay on top of the constant social media updates, Kamber publishes a recap of the most important changes every Friday.

You can follow Kamber on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn to receive updates as they happen.