Top 10 Social Media Sites for Business
This post will help you explore the top social media sites for business. Effective social media marketing for a business comes from having a multi-faceted campaign that gets attention on the top social media sites.
Statista ranks the ten most popular social media sites in the U.S. by the number of monthly U.S.-based users (as of July 2018) in this order:
- Facebook: 168,760,000 users
- Instagram: 116,990,000 users
- Facebook Messenger: 110,950,000 users
- Twitter: 70,210,000 users
- Pinterest: 58,230,000 users
- Snapchat: 52,090,000 users
- Reddit: 33,440,000 users
- Tumblr: 23,350,000 users
- WhatsApp: 20,940,000 users
- Google Hangouts: 15,280,000 users
A Multi-Faceted Approach to Social Media Marketing Sites for Business
Effective use of the top social media for business includes having a comprehensive campaign to create awareness on popular social media sites that have the most users. Awareness is enhanced by working with social media influencers and using effective content marketing on the top social media sites as well as placing advertising on the top social media sites.
You can do this yourself, or you can hire a company to provide social media marketing services for you.
The formula for digital marketing success on social media is:
Managed Online Presence + Content Marketing + Advertising + Influence = Social Media Success
When using social media for business marketing purposes, there are three major approaches necessary to be effective. These include creating social media popularity, business-to-business networking, and managing the online reputation of the business.
A) Social Media Popularity Metrics
The first important approach is to create interest
Of the most popular social media sites for business, the best ones for B2C businesses, in order, are Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook Messenger, Pinterest, Snapchat, and Twitter. The others (Reddit, Tumblr, WhatsApp, and Google Hangouts) on the top-ten popularity list given above are important too; however, these seven social media systems are critically important for businesses.
B) Business-to-Business Networking
The second powerful approach is to use social media systems that are designed for business-to-business (B2B) connections in order to improve and enhance business networking efforts. The best social media system for B2B connections is LinkedIn. LinkedIn is not in the top-ten list for general popularity; however, it is critical to use it for most businesses.
C) Managing Online Reputation
The third important approach is to manage the online reputation of a business on social media systems that give reviews, such as Yelp and those that give local business information such as Google My Business.
By paying attention to these three approaches for social media marketing, businesses enhance their social media results.
Here are some characteristics and marketing insights for some of the ten popular social media sites we selected, which are the most useful social media for American businesses.
Top Social Media Sites for Business
Facebook is the global behemoth of social marketing. Facebook is designed to help businesses focus their social media marketing efforts towards a well-targeted market demographic.
Business Facebook Page
Facebook encourages businesses to create a business Facebook page. Facebook reports that there are now more than 60 million active Facebook business pages. Facebook offers the chance for businesses to join communities of other Facebook members, to add updates to their page, and to promote their page.
Businesses who use these pages for content marketing instead of sales pitches do better at attracting attention and likes for their Facebook page.
Content marketing promotes brand awareness by giving customer useful information through interesting content. An example of good content marketing is a food product company that gives a free download of a book of recipes. This type of e-book gives recipes of tasty dishes made with the foods they sell. This is a promotion for the company and its products and yet also contains a considerable amount of useful content that is attractive to the readers.
The details that Facebook has collected about its users offer businesses the chance to manage a Facebook advertising campaign on a finely-tuned basis. The Facebook Audience Insight Tool helps businesses understand the demographics that they can target, the geographical distribution of potential customers, and the customers’ past-purchasing behavior.
Facebook helps advertisers with creative suggestions and gives success stories of some companies with effective marketing efforts on Facebook that are listed by industry categories.
At first, it may seem easy to promote a business on Facebook. Getting started with a Facebook business page is simple; however, getting attention, especially in a cost-effective manner is much more challenging. For businesses that are new to digital marketing or those new to Facebook marketing, they are well-advised to work with a digital marketing company like Digital Logic that specializes in creating and managing Facebook promotions.
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Instagram is a quick way to make a post, usually with an image or a video of some kind. On Instagram is possible to reach a very large audience. Instagram is owned by Facebook. The company was acquired by Facebook for a cool $1 billion when Instagram was less than two years old.
All of the advertising tools used on Facebook are able to be used with Instagram. This means it is possible to strategically focus on very detailed user demographic information for targeted advertising. While advertising on Instagram is potentially valuable, getting organic traffic from viewers is a better goal. This is because paid advertisements are so easily ignored, where a link sent by a friend to a post or for a re-post by a friend is more interesting to look at.
Instagram Organic Traffic
Organic traffic is normally thought of as being as being traffic that is not paid for by advertising dollars. This pure organic traffic is wonderful when a business is able to generate it. Successful businesses that get lots of organic traffic create very compelling Instagram posts. There are also workarounds to get organic traffic from others on Instagram by paying for it behind the scenes.
Celebrities, who are popular on Instagram, have millions of followers. These popular personalities on social media are called “influencers.” Businesses can pay the influencers to post things about the business to show to their followers and post a link to the business for their followers to use.
Celebrities can use products in their videos or visit a sponsor’s business. For example, when viewing a celebrity video on Instagram that shows them using something that clearly shows the brand, the celebrity is usually being paid to do this.
There are three ways to use YouTube as part of a digital marketing campaign for a business. These are creating videos and channels, paying for advertising, and working with influencers.
Any business can sign up for a free account on YouTube, produce a video and upload it for the public to view. Because video production technology is much less expensive than in the past, it is very easy for a business to make videos. Except for the cost to make a video, there is no cost for a business to put a video on YouTube.
Just because a business puts up a video on YouTube does not mean that anyone will want to view it. Unless the video is promoted by the business or is very compelling content or both, it may easily be ignored and end up with few views. However, if a video is quality content marketing, is compelling, and is promoted properly, it may achieve significant views. This is the goal.
When a video goes “viral,” this means the video is shared by many with others and the views go up exponentially. Some of the strangest and unusual videos on YouTube have achieved this status. Some clever advertisements have gone viral as well. Content creators on YouTube get paid a portion of the advertising revenues received by YouTube for the views they generate. Creating a viral video is nice, yet this process is somewhat unpredictable.
YouTube videos can easily be shared on any other social media and embedded in emails or on other websites. This capability helps to increase the popularity of a specific YouTube video.
Businesses that make more than one video can create a YouTube channel. Having a channel with multiple videos available for viewing gives a business many ways to interact with YouTube users. Besides giving likes and leaving comments, YouTube users can subscribe to a channel. Subscribers automatically get notices when new videos are posted on the channel.
Channels are best when there is a steady flow of interesting content that increases in popularity. When it is possible, a channel may offer playlists of videos in a pre-selected order that automatically play in sequence. YouTube also offers the ability to conduct a live stream of a show as it is happening.
Paid advertising on YouTube is available as short commercials that play before a video is shown and text labeling around the video playback window. The business that creates the video may also use captions for advertisements as text overlays on the video.
There are many influencers on YouTube who have created video content that is watched by millions of followers. Depending on their target market, some businesses find that sponsorship opportunities with these influencers are effective.
4. Facebook Messenger
Facebook Messenger is a separate application from Facebook itself. Facebook Messenger integrates well with Facebook and is the mobile application preferred by Facebook users for its added features. Facebook says that Facebook Messenger is now being used globally by more than one billion people each day. Over 100 million of these Facebook Messenger users are from the United States
Instant Messaging on Facebook Messenger
Facebook Messenger allows users to instantly share text messages with each other at no cost. Business can incorporate customer service supported by live chat that works on Facebook Messenger.
Businesses can put a link to Facebook Messenger on their Facebook page or their website and then immediately communicate with customers using text messaging. Text messaging is the most popular way of communicating especially by younger Americans. Pew Research Center reports that over two-thirds of Americans own a smartphone and 97% of those Americans use their smartphone to send at least one text message each day.
Millennials would rather send a text message than to talk with someone on the phone. For businesses that desire to market products or services to millennials, Facebook Messenger is a must-have for a digital and social media marketing campaign. There are some pretty amazing tools by MobileMonkey to help you create mobile
Facebook Messenger Advertising
Facebook Messenger accesses the same advertising platform as can be used on Facebook itself and for Instagram. Businesses that understand how to use Facebook, Instagram, and Facebook Messenger together can create very dynamic promotional campaigns.
Pinterest is very effective for any businesses that can show products or services with colorful photos. By creating an image gallery of products or services that can be shown as a category or collection, a Pinterest page attracts web traffic to be directed to beneficial places such as a company’s e-commerce website or links to their products that are for sale on Amazon.
Pinterest Designer Gallery
Having a Pinterest gallery showing beautiful photos of completed work is good for businesses that offer design services such as interior decorators, floral shops, and landscapers.
Pinterest Female Demographic
Pinterest appeals very strongly to females. Business Insider reports that over 80% of Pinterest users are women. Millennials use Pinterest as much as Instagram.
Pinterest gives the following details about Pinterest users:
- 40% make more than $100,000 per year
- 50% of millennials use Pinterest at least once per month.
- 72% use the Pinterest system to decide what to buy.
- 80% say they access Pinterest by smartphone.
- 87% purchased something by seeing it first on Pinterest.
- 93% say they use Pinterest to plan for future purchases.
The Pinterest search function finds images based on keywords and tags so businesses may get some organic traffic from any user searches that include the keywords used for a photo.
Besides putting up business Pinterest galleries, businesses can buy advertising on Pinterest to interest views of their pages. Businesses also can track the referrals that come from Pinterest images to their websites and the conversion rates for sales.
Snapchat competes with Instagram as being a place where it is very quick and easy to post images. Snapchat also offers unique advertising opportunities for businesses. Snapchat says it has 188 million average daily users globally. U.S.-based users are up to half of that number. Snapchat also says that its users open the Snapchat application an average of 23 times per day and spend over 30 minutes using it. 60% of these Snapchat users make a Snapchat image every day.
Fun advertisements are encouraged on Snapchat. Snapchat is accessed by smartphone users, so advertisements need to be designed for those size screens. Snapchat offers full-screen ads with the sound automatically on, links to videos, and downloads of applications.
A unique feature on Snapchat is a location-based filter. Businesses can pay to own a geographically defined space for their physical locations. These can be for locations of a business that are permanent, such as stores or restaurants, or for temporary locations used by them to promote events.
Another popular feature that is unique on Snapchat is the ability to sponsor lenses. Lenses are used to add overlays to the Snapchat users’ photos. These can be backgrounds or funny things like animal ears and noses. Businesses that pay to sponsor the lenses have their brand logos promoted by them.
Thanks to the POTUS, Twitter is as popular as ever. Reading and making tweets and re-tweets are things done daily by over 300 million global users. About 70 million of them are Americans. Twitter encourages live tweeting along with using the unique identifiers called “hashtags.” Hashtags start with the “#” symbol and become popular by their use. There is a hashtag for every popular social cause and almost every concept imaginable. Twitter says there are over 500 million tweets each day. Anyone can create a Twitter account, attract followers, and send out tweets to make it popular.
Businesses can create video ads on Twitter, work with influencers, and use brand advocates to constantly tweet about their products.
Twitter Used for Customer Service
People frequently tweet about things that they buy or things they are considering to purchase. Twitter says that 85% of its users think it is important for a business to provide customer service via Twitter.
Twitter has a special customer service feature that allows businesses to quickly respond to their customers’ needs. This helps businesses manage their online reputation, develop good relationships with their customers, and encourages customer loyalty.
LinkedIn is a social media platform designed specifically for business-to-business networking. LinkedIn is not like other social media that are free to join and use. There are some basic search features available for free LinkedIn accounts. However, in order to gain full access to the information of its members and make contacts, LinkedIn charges a monthly subscription fee.
B2B Networking on LinkedIn
Some of the most compelling reasons to have a LinkedIn account are the opportunities to make new connections, generate leads, and network with others. For businesses that sell products or services to other businesses, LinkedIn is a major helpful tool to use to build a brand and make sales. LinkedIn is more effective for B2B opportunities than Facebook.
Recruiting Talent on LinkedIn
LinkedIn is an excellent resource for businesses looking to hire top talent. The reverse is also true. Those searching for a great job can network effectively on LinkedIn to help advance their careers. Many of the best positions are never advertised by companies. Likewise, many of the best candidates for those positions are not necessarily looking for another job. LinkedIn says that searching for candidates and jobs by networking with LinkedIn members is surpassing the effectiveness of using headhunters from staffing agencies. Using LinkedIn is more direct, more effective, and less costly.
Content Marketing on LinkedIn
Forbes reports that LinkedIn is the most effective social media for B2B content distribution. It is used for 94% of B2B marketing efforts. For B2B product launches, 81% of B2B marketing efforts use LinkedIn. Conversion rates from LinkedIn referral pages are higher for B2B business on LinkedIn when compared to Facebook and other social media.
9. Google My Business
Google My Business is a feature offered by Google that started in 2014. This is a part of Google’s continuing efforts to make search results more relevant to users. The idea is to make searches return information about things in the geographic area where the person doing the search is located.
Google My Business Listing
Google My Business offers a free account for businesses to use to enter information about their physical locations. This information is used by Google for Google Search results and to show the locations of the businesses on Google Maps. This helps a Google user find businesses that are from their local community more easily.
Google My Business Free Website
Google also offers businesses a free website that is automatically generated from the information that businesses enter into their Google My Business account. These free Google websites can be customized by the business with added text, photos, and themes.
Uses for Google My Business
Businesses can use the Google My Business service to promote their business, make it easier for customers to get directions to the business, publish the hours and days of operation, promote specials, share information through updates, stay in touch with customers to increase loyalty, and monitor customer reviews.
There is also a useful tool that shows what Google users do to find a business when they search for it. Since these Google My Business services are free, businesses would be foolish not to use them.
Yelp is an extremely popular review website that is used both online and by mobile users when searching for places to visit. The Yelp for business tools
All businesses that interface with the public, need to actively manage their online reputation. They need to pay attention to the customer reviews on Yelp as well as what customers are saying on other review sites.
Yelp says that there are over 140 million Yelp users every month. Besides having a free business listing on Yelp, there are also paid advertising opportunities. One very effective way to use Yelp advertising is to place ads on the Yelp listings of competitors.
Businesses who manage their online reputations do much better than those who neglect to pay attention to what customers are saying about them. Professional services like those offered by Digital Logic can track the online review websites, such as Yelp, to help manage the online reputation for a business.
These are the top ten social media systems that all businesses should use as the fundamental support for their digital marketing strategy. By working with the experts at Digital Logic, a business can create a robust presence on social media with powerful benefits. Contact us for a custom quote.