Social media is the new village square. All your customers are hanging out there. But which of the social media networks for small businesses is best for you?
Social media has permeated our daily routines and change the way we live our lives, relate with brands and make purchasing decisions.
With over 3 billion active social media users spending an average of 142 minutes per day on social networks and messaging, embracing social networks for your businesses could be a sure way to unveil limitless opportunities.
Of course, a lot of businesses are already doing this.
According to a study by Mashable, 81% of all small and medium businesses use some kind of social platform while Ad Week found out that 91% of retail brands use 2 or more social media channels.
One study found out that 66% of people that visit social networks do so to learn about new products and services while another study by Buffer shows that 73% of marketers believe that social media marketing has been very effective for their businesses.
These show how important social networks could be for small businesses and thankfully; this article has compiled 5 social media networks you should definitely consider for your business.
And, here they are.
This is one of the oldest in the pack founded in 2004 and according to Social Media Today, 500,000 new profiles are created each day, this is about 6 per seconds.
Overall, there are about 2.3 billion active users and 60 million active business pages making it the most popular social network in the world right now.
According to data released by Facebook, there are about 1.49 billion active daily users and a study by the Entrepreneur shows that an average Facebook user spends about 35 minutes on the social network per day.
And today, a lot of B2C companies are successfully using it to promote their businesses and of course, it is also effective for B2B companies.
In a survey, 42% of B2B marketers admitted that Facebook is the most effective B2B social networking platform for their companies.
Of course, this is the most popular B2B social network today and the platform provides opportunities for professionals to connect with each other across industries.
Within its first 6 months there were 37,000 users but today, Linkedin has grown to about 562 million users and 106 million people access the website on a monthly basis.
A study by Spectrem shows that two-thirds of millionaires are on Linkedin but the bad news is that they don’t check their Linkedin page as much as they do the other social networks.
As of last year, about 24.5 million companies have active Linkedin pages and a study by eConsultancy shows that 64% of social referrals to corporate websites come from Linkedin.
Despite the enormous opportunities Linkedin offers, sadly, only 17% of US small businesses are using it.
However, the platform is right for you especially, if your market covers businesses and high-profile professionals.
Over the years, Twitter has grown to become an excellent platform for real-time marketing and customer service.
According to Twitter, the last 2 years have seen a 2.5X increase in customer service conversation on Twitter while another study shows that 77% of Twitter users feel more positive about a brand when their tweet has been replied.
54% of users surveyed by Twitter reported that they had taken actions like visiting a brand’s website, searching for them or retweeting content after seeing a brand mentioned in a tweet
Data obtained from eMarketer shows that 65.8% of US companies with 100+ employees use Twitter for marketing and a study by AdWeek shows that 92% of companies tweet more than once.
According to Buffer, those that tweet with images gets 150% more retweets.
As of today, Twitter has about 326 million active users and a total of 1.3 billion accounts have been created.
The platform is right for you if your market covers teenagers, millennials and businesses.
A study by Business Insider shows that 24% of US teens cite Instagram as their favorite social network. A different study reveals that 90% of Instagram users are less than 35 years old while 60.4% of the users are aged between 18 – 24 years.
This makes it an excellent platform for businesses that are targeting young people.
As of today, there are about 1 billion active monthly users on Instagram and over 60% log in daily, making it the second most engaged social network after Facebook.
Today, about 24 million brands are using Instagram and 60% of Instagram users discover new products using the service.
A study by Forrester reveals that engagement with brands on Instagram is 10 times higher than Facebook, 54 times higher than Pinterest and 84 times higher than Twitter.
These stats, of course, make Instagram a must for every brand.
This is another excellent platform for businesses that are targeting the young people.
According to Hootsuite, 60% of Snapchat users are under 25 and a study by Pew Research reveals that 78% of America between the age 18-24 years old are using the platform and 47% of US teens think that it is better than Facebook while 24% believe that it better than Instagram.
Data from a study by AdWeek shows that 64% of marketers are using SnapChat and according to Daily Beast, people spend more time on SnapChat than on Instagram,
The study shows that people spend about 34.5 minutes per day on the app and send about 34.1 messages per day.
It might worth pointing out that SnapChat is not a social network for lazy businesses. The service requires users to update daily. This is because after one day the content expires.
Currently, only a few small businesses use SnapChat and it won’t hurt trying out the service.
Wrapping it up
Marketing today has evolved to become trust-based and self-directed and there is no better way to build a relationship and gain customers’ loyalty than using social media.
A study by Oberlo found out that 71% of consumers who have a positive experience with a brand on social media are likely to recommend the brand to family and friends,
As you can see ignoring social media for your small business is not an option. You can start with any one of the above and then scale from there.