Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, SnapChat, TikTok, YouTube... the choice of social platforms can be overwhelming! How do you know which ones to focus your time on? In this week's blog I'm sharing all the stats for the 8 biggest social platforms worldwide, so that you can make sure you're focusing your time and energy on the right platforms for your business! #socialmediamarketing #socialmedia #businessmarketing #businesscoach #businesscoachforwomen #fempire #fempirecoach #womensupportingwomen #ladybossesInstagram, Facebook, YouTube, TikTok, Snapchat, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn… the list seems endless.

 

Did you know that there are now over one hundred different social media platforms? And the list keeps growing!

 

The world of social media can be overwhelming.

 

How do you know which platforms you should be spending your precious time and energy on?

 

In this article I’m giving you an overview of the top eight most used social media platforms worldwide so you can figure out which ones are right for your business!

 

Firstly, Why Use Social Media in Business?

 

Social media platforms are a critical part of any business growth strategy today.

Here are just some of the reasons why your business needs to be on social media:

 

8 Reasons Why Your Business Needs to be on Social Media.

  1. To raise your brand visibility and brand awareness (i.e. to let people know you exist!)
  2. To build your audience of potential customers (it’s so much easier to sell to a ‘warm’ audience as opposed to a ‘cold’ audience who’s never heard of you before).
  3. To connect and engage with your potential customers and to learn more about their key challenges and struggles.
  4. To inform, educate, and inspire your audience and move them up the Customer Value Journey from ‘problem unaware’ to ‘solution aware’ (discover everything you need to know about the essential Customer Value Journey is my article here: How to Win More Clients with a Powerful Customer Value Journey.)
  5. To build trust and credibility in your brand. Your customers want to know whether they know, like, and trust you before they’re willing to invest.
  6. To establish your authority and leadership in your field.
  7. To grow your email list so you can nurture your audience and build the relationship with them.
  8. To sell! You can use social media to convert your audience into paying customers.

 

So now that we’ve established why your business needs to be on social media, the next step is to figure out which platforms you should focus your marketing efforts on.

 

You have only so much time in your day and you don’t want to spend it all on social media. Tweet it

 

The best thing you can do on social media is to pick one or two platforms and focus your energy there to start with. Don’t try to spread yourself too thin! Your target audience won’t be on every single social media platform so you shouldn’t be either. Use this guide to figure out which social media platforms you should be using to see results in your business. 

Social media marketing is absolutely essential for your business in this day in age. But which ones are the best for your business? Read on to discover the latest statistics for each of the big eight social platforms globally so you you know which ones are right for you! #socialmediamarketing #socialmedia #businessmarketing #businesscoach #businesscoachforwomen #fempire #fempirecoach #womensupportingwomen #ladybosses

 

The Key Thing to Consider When Deciding on Which Social Platforms to Use

 

The key question you need to ask yourself when trying to decide which platforms to use is:

 

Where is your target audience spending their time?

 

There’s no point in spending lots of time on TikTok if your ideal clients aren’t even on there! Where are your ideal clients hanging out?

The following information is intended to help you decide which platforms to use in your business based on some of the statistics available for each platform. I’ve collated this information from several different sources (see the sources at the end of the article!)

The social platforms below are ranked in order from highest number of users to lowest number of users worldwide. All stats are accurate as at May 2021.

Are you ready?

Here we go!

Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, SnapChat, TikTok, YouTube... the choice of social platforms can be overwhelming! How do you know which ones to focus your time on? In this week's blog I'm sharing all the stats for the 8 biggest social platforms worldwide, so that you can make sure you're focusing your time and energy on the right platforms for your business! #socialmediamarketing #socialmedia #businessmarketing #businesscoach #businesscoachforwomen #fempire #fempirecoach #womensupportingwomen #ladybosses

 

Everything You Need to Know About the World’s Biggest Social Platforms

 

1. Facebook

What is Facebook?

Facebook is a platform for social connection. People tend to jump onto Facebook to catch up with what’s going on in their friend circles and to stay up to date with social happenings. It’s by far the most widely used social platform worldwide.

Facebook’s Company Vision Statement: “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.”

Number of active users per month: 2.7 billion

Who Uses the Platform?

  • 86% of people aged 18-29. 
  • 77% of people aged 30-49. 
  • 51% of people aged 50-65. 
  • 34% of people aged 65+. 
  • 54% of users are female. 
  • 46% of users are male. A
  • Average income ranges widely from $30K – $100K+.

 

Important Characteristics of Facebook

  • Facebook is the most widely used social platform with the most varied demographics of users, meaning your target audience is probably on Facebook. 
  • It’s a ‘pay to play’ platform, meaning you’ll need to invest some money to promote your business page, your offers, and your content. Of course, you can post without paying, but organic (unpaid) reach is very low these days and building your brand visibility without Ads is a long process and requires a lot of effort.
  • Facebook Ads is a very powerful platform to use for promoting your business offerings, with good ROI on average. You can target very specific audiences and demographics with Ads because Facebook collects lots of personal information about its users. 
  • Using a low budget and trying to reach a large audience is less effective than a larger budget targeted to a more niched audience. 
  • People are generally on Facebook for social reasons as a form of time out. Your content will need to be captivating in order to disrupt your audience and gain their attention.

 

 

2. YouTube

What is YouTube?

YouTube is a search engine for video content. Video is the most powerful form of content these days because showing is more powerful than telling. Plus, it allows you to make a direct connection with your audience. They get to see you and know you as if they’re in the room with you. That’s why video traffic is predicted to make up 80% of all traffic online by the end of 2021. If video isn’t part of your marketing strategy yet, it probably should be! 

Plus, being a search engine, your audience is actively searching for content on YouTube and so when you’re using the right keywords, it can be a powerful marketing machine for your business.

YouTube’s Company Vision Statement: “Our mission is to give everyone a voice and show them the world. We believe that everyone deserves to have a voice, and that the world is a better place when we listen, share and build community through our stories.”

Who Uses the Platform?

  • 81% of people aged 15-25. 
  • 71% of people aged 26-35. 
  • 67% of people aged 36-45. 
  • 66% of people aged 46-55. 
  • 58% of people aged 56+. 
  • 55% of users are female. 
  • 45% of users are male. 
  • Average income ranges from $30K – $100K+. 


Important Characteristics of YouTube

  • YouTube is a search engine, hosting and streaming platform for video content. 
  • Owned by Google, it gives you access to Google’s advertising platform, which you can use to your advantage when running YouTube ads. 
  • Being a search engine, you’ll catch people who are actively looking for your product or service. You’ll need your videos to use appropriate keywords and tags so people can find your content.
  • Optimize your search rankings by including searched keywords in your title.
  • If you prepare a lot of video content (which most businesses should do!), you can create your own YouTube channel for free and use it to host and showcase all of your video content. 

 

 

3. Instagram

What is Instagram?

Instagram is a free social media platform for sharing images and video content. It’s a great platform for making connections with people and other businesses who see the world in interesting ways. You can find and follow people and businesses based on their content, and if they like yours, they’ll follow you back.

It can be a powerful marketing mechanism for your business. It’s essential for E-Commerce businesses and creative businesses that rely on your customers seeing your visual content.

Instagram’s Company Vision Statement: “To capture and share the world’s moments.”

Number of active users per month: 1 billion

Who Uses the Platform?

  • 67% of people aged 18-29. 
  • 47% of people aged 30-49. 
  • 23% of people aged 50-64. 
  • 8% of people aged 65+. 
  • 51% of users are female. 
  • 49% of users are male 
  • 60% of users earn $100K+ (more affluent platform).


Important Characteristics of Instagram

  • Instagram is for visual content, including infographics, photos, and video. 
  • Instagram is owned by Facebook so you have access to the same extensive user base and advertising platform. Ads can be run across both platforms simultaneously for a wider reach. 
  • Instagram posts can be directly cross-posted to Facebook. 
  • It’s one of the best platforms for E-Commerce and creative businesses. 
  • Instagram Reels are now providing strong competition to TikTok for animated videos. 
  • Instagram is a great platform to directly engage with your followers and to have conversations with them in direct messages. 

 

 

4. TikTok

What is TikTok?

TikTok is a social media platform for creating, sharing and discovering short videos. The app is used by people as an outlet to express themselves through singing, dancing, comedy, and lip-syncing, and allows users to create videos and share them across a community. It’s starting to get more and more traction with businesses as a way to connect with their audience.

TikTok’s Company Vision Statement: “TikTok is the leading destination for short-form mobile video. Our mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy.”

Number of active users per month: 800 million

Who Uses the Platform?

  • 41% of users are aged between 16-24 years old. 
  • Further stats pending. TikTok was only established in 2018. 

Important Characteristics of TikTok

  • TikTok is a mobile app for creating and sharing short videos. 
  • TikTok’s mission is “to capture and present the world’s creativity, knowledge, and precious life moments, directly from the mobile phone”. 
  • The platform is great for business and content creators, allowing you to engage with customers through video, in short, bite-sized clips. 
  • You can share your business core content messages in marketing videos. 
  • Your TikTok videos can be shared across your other social platforms. 
  • Younger users create and share animated videos that commonly include singing, dancing, lip-syncing, and comedy. 
  • Adult and business usage is growing: In less than 18 months, adult users grew 5.5 times from 2018. 
  • This platform is one to watch!

 

 

5. SnapChat

What is SnapChat?

Snapchat is a popular messaging app that lets users exchange pictures and videos (called snaps) that disappear after they’re viewed. Some businesses use it as a way to directly connect with their potential customers.

SnapChat’s Company Vision Statement: “Snapchat is an app that empowers people to express themselves, live in the moment, learn about the world, and have fun together. It’s the easiest and fastest way to communicate the full range of human emotions with your friends without pressure to be popular, pretty, or perfect.”

Number of active users per month: 381 million

Who Uses the Platform?

  • 53% of people aged 15-25. 
  • 34% of people aged 26-35. 
  • 18% of people aged 36-45. 
  • 11% of people aged 46-55. 
  • 4% of people aged 56+. 
  • 61% of users are female. 
  • 38% of users are male.

Important Characteristics of SnapChat

  • Snapchat is a mobile app for Android and iOS devices designed mainly for social interaction in a casual and fun way. 
  • It’s about being authentic, not picture-perfect. 
  • Photos and videos that you take in Snapchat are known as ‘snaps’ that can be posted, sent, and received. 
  • Known as the app for #RealFriends, ‘snaps’ are lighthearted and creative.
  • 87% of users are younger than 35. So if your target audience is young, Snapchat is an essential platform for your business. 
  • One of the core concepts of the app is that any picture or video or message you send is only accessible for a short time before it disappears. This temporary nature is designed to encourage a more spontaneous and natural flow of interaction. 

 

6. Twitter

What is Twitter?

Twitter is a microblogging and social networking service on which users post and interact with messages known as “tweets”. Its intention is to provide a service for friends, family, and co-workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent messages. “Tweets” can contain photos, videos, links, and text. These messages are posted to your profile, sent to your followers, and are searchable on Twitter search.

Twitter’s Company Vision Statement: “The mission we serve as Twitter, Inc. is to give everyone the power to create and share ideas and information instantly without barriers. Our business and revenue will always follow that mission in ways that improve – and do not detract from – a free and global conversation.”

Number of active users per month: 330 million

Who Uses the Platform?

  • 38% of people aged 18-29. 
  • 26% of people aged 30-49. 
  • 17% of people aged 50-64. 
  • 7% of people aged 65+. 
  • 50% of users are female. 
  • 50% of users are male. 
  • Largest demographic (41%) is households with annual income > $75,000. 


Important Characteristics of Twitter

  • Twitter is a live, interactive platform where users post and view short ‘tweets’ of up to 280 characters. 
  • The platform is very popular with academics, students, policymakers, politicians, celebrities, news channels, and the general public. 
  • You can reach practically any person or business simply by tagging them in a Tweet.
  • You can witness real-time conversations and debates between people around the world. 
  • Stay up to date with the latest trends, conversations, and news-making headlines via their trending notifications. 
  • We recommend you only use Twitter for your business if you know that your target audience is actively spending time on there.

 

7. Pinterest

What is Pinterest?

Pinterest is a search engine and visual discovery platform for finding ideas like recipes, home and style inspiration, personal growth and development guidance, business growth resources, and so much more. You can create your own ‘pins’ which lead to different articles on your website. It’s a great tool to drive traffic to your website when you use the right keywords and hashtags in your pins. It’s a very powerful – and often underestimated  – platform for showcasing your expertise and growing your email database and your brand visibility.

Pinterest’s Company Vision Statement: “Our mission is to help empower people to discover things they love and inspire them to go do those things in real life.”

Number of active users per month: 322 million

Who Uses the Platform?

  • 34% of people aged 18-29. 
  • 35% of people aged 30-49. 
  • 27% of people aged 50-65. 
  • 15% of people that are 65+. 
  • 70% of users are female. 
  • 30% of users are male. 
  • Largest demographic (41%) is households with annual income > $75,000 (same as Twitter). 


Important Characteristics of Pinterest

  • Pinterest is a visual search engine and is an essential platform for those in the creative industry (jewelry, home design, crafts, clothing etc). 
  • The platform helps people to find and do the things that they love, from deciding what to do for dinner to planning a holiday or redecorating their home. 
  • A ‘pin’ is a long vertical visual image (600 x 900 pixels) containing visual content that is connected to a URL. 
  • Users can click through to the pin owner’s website. 
  • All businesses can use Pinterest to showcase their products and services, share their content, educate and inspire their audience, build their brand visibility, and grow their email database with a compelling lead magnet that requires an opt-in. 
  • The visual element of the platform helps you to tell your brand story. 
  • Pinterest is a source of inspiration for many entrepreneurs to launch their business, and for others, it’s the tool to help them grow. 
  • Being a search engine, Pinterest is connected to Google and can drastically increase your SEO when you use your power keywords regularly.

 

8. LinkedIn

What is LinkedIn?

LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network on the internet. You can use LinkedIn to showcase your expertise, market your business, find the right job or internship, connect and strengthen professional relationships, and learn the skills you need to succeed in your career. It’s sometimes referred to as ‘Facebook for Professionals’.

LinkedIn’s Company Vision Statement: “To connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful.”

Number of active users per month: 260 million

Who Uses the Platform?

  • 21% of people aged 18-24. 
  • 60% of people aged 25-34. 
  • 17% of people aged 35-54. 
  • 3% of people aged 55+. 
  • 43% of users are female. 
  • 57% of users are male. 
  • 60% of users earn $100K+ (more affluent platform). 

Important Characteristics of LinkedIn

  • Known by some as ‘Facebook for professionals’. 
  • Originally developed as a recruitment platform, it’s now widely used by professionals to connect with other professionals, engage with each others’ content, and market their services. 
  • The platform is used predominantly by professional service businesses. If your target audience is professionals, you should definitely be marketing yourself on LinkedIn.
  • It’s currently the most effective platform for organic reach, engagement, and lead generation (with 59% lead generation rate compared to Facebook’s 24% – Ref. 2).
  • You should definitely be on LinkedIn if you run a professional service business. 
  • The platform is less relevant for trades, E-Commerce, and product businesses.
  • Algorithms give preference to those who engage regularly on the platform with other peoples’ content. 
  • Make engagement part of your daily strategy if LinkedIn is part of your marketing strategy.

 

Whew! You made it!

You should be much clearer now about the qualities of each platform and which ones are best for your business. 

 

Everything You Need to Know About the World’s Biggest Social PlatformsTweet it

 

Here are some key takeaway messages:

  • You should probably have a presence on Facebook, given that your audience is most likely on there (most people are!). 
  • All professional service businesses should have a visible presence on LinkedIn. 
  • If your brand is creative or highly visual, you should be on Instagram and Pinterest. 
  • If your target audience is young (<35 years old), you should be on TikTok and Snapchat. 
  • Video content gets by far the most engagement on social media, so make it part of your content strategy. Take some time to learn how to create animated, visual content on platforms like Instagram ‘Stories’ and ‘Reels’, and TikTok, or simply using a tool like Canva. It’s really easy to create short, engaging videos in Canva!

 

Are you starting or growing your own business?

Get your FREE Fempreneur Success Handbook and discover everything I wish someone had told me back when I was starting my business in 2014!

 

Did you like this article? You might also like:

How to Win More Clients with a Powerful Customer Value Journey

How to Speak Transformationally So You Can Sell More

How to Drastically Increase Profits with a Product or Service Ladder

The Confused Person Never Buys: How to Make Your Offerings Clear so You’ll Never Lose a Customer Again

The Art of Content Marketing: How to Build Your Brand Credibility and Easily Win New Clients

In service to your success,

Kate De Jong, Ph.D
Fempire Coach for Thriving Female Professionals
Katiedejong.com
kated@fempirecoach.com.au

 

References

REF 1: https://khoros.com/resources/social-media-demographics-guide
REF 2: https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/linkedin-vs-facebook
REF 3: https://au.oberlo.com/blog/tiktok-statistics
REF 4: https://www.pocket-lint.com/apps/news/snapchat/131313-what-is-snapchat-how-does-it-work-and-what-is-it-used-for
REF 5: https://prowebmarketing.com/which-social-media-platform-should-i-use-for-my-business/ 

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