Social media and brand promotion go hand in hand – and in fact, having a vibrant social media presence is one of the best ways to build authenticity and a sense of trust between your brand and your customers. Social media platforms aren't one size fits all, so understanding your customers, including their favorite apps and how they prefer to consume media, is the key to social media engagement.
With that in mind, however, there are a few outstanding social media platforms that STILL can give your business a broad reach with little monetary outlay. While this may not be our current favorites - they still are outperforming other channels when it comes to your business:
Facebook has gotten a lot of flack over the past couple of years about privacy settings and the like, but for the 35 and older demographic, it's still the most widely used social media app. For smaller local businesses, networking through Facebook and joining local Facebook groups is a great way to increase awareness of the business itself and to create events. Facebook groups and the Nextdoor app can drive many local customers to your sale, wine tasting, or make them are of your sponsorship at a community festival.
Facebook also has the best targeting available for local advertising campaigns, which businesses can use to find new followers and increase the reach of their brand. This feature puts your business in front of buyers who are close to buying, or who require your goods or services.
Instagram is best for businesses to display photos and short clips of their business "in action," whether it's a story to give customers a sneak peek at new arrivals to the store or professional photos of food and drinks. Plus, Instagram embodies the philosophy of "a picture is worth a thousand words," and therefore may gain more interest than a simple blog or text post.
Instagram also makes it easy for businesses to quickly respond to followers, and to gain new ones. And with over a billion users and a demographic that's younger than Facebook, it opens the doors to a different buyer persona.
YouTube is best for those who wish to demonstrate how to use their products, or for business owners who want a user-friendly video application that interfaces well with their brand's website. Having YouTube videos mention their company website, and vice versa, allows business owners to cross-promote across two different platforms and gain a greater audience.
Another benefit of YouTube is that it increases the connection between a business and the consumer. Seeing you (or your brand) represented in a relatable, easily consumable manner builds a relationship between business and consumer, which many younger buyers desire. Many users head straight to YouTube when searching for info about certain products and services, so if you are able to answer that call - YouTube might bring you huge benefits.
Twitter is great for businesses to create a "personality" for their brand, quickly share new blog posts or stories, and engage in a less formal, off the cuff interaction with other brands, regular customers, or to highlight articles that may interest their customers. Plus, Twitter is a "real-time" social media platform, and allows you to react quickly to breaking news, important issues in your industry, or to garner last-minute attention to an event or sale. And, you don't need elaborate videos or pictures to stand out – just attention-getting commentary.
These four companies still have the largest following, and while some smaller businesses may drive a lot of sales and awareness through other apps like Tik Tok, LinkedIn, Reddit, etc. for many businesses, these four apps make the biggest impact for businesses in 2021 for their social media marketing.