Which Social Media Marketing Platform is Best for You?
We’ll review different marketing platforms, and identify their target market and the pros and cons of each.
What better place to start this list than with the social media giant itself? Facebook is a huge platform that took the social media world by storm back when the concept of social media platforms themselves was new and exciting. Because of its early beginnings, Facebook has grown to have a massive 2.9 billion monthly active users from all walks of life and all over the world.
Pros and Cons of Facebook’s Platform
Beginning with the benefits, Facebook’s massive user base also provides any aspiring marketeer with just about any demographic they might be looking into. Whether it’s women in their forties, gamers, or sports enthusiasts, Facebook hosts them all in droves. Along with this comes a multitude of tools Facebook offers to its advertisers. For instance, with the “Audience” tool, you can select extremely specific demographics in order to be sure that your ads are reaching where they need to go.
Nothing can ever be truly perfect, and the same goes for platforms such as Facebook. One big downside is one’s competition. There is only so much ad space available, and often those who pay the most might get their content seen. Another great dig at Facebook’s marketing power is their reported misrepresentation of some metrics. In recent years, however, Facebook has implemented countermeasures such as third parties to wash away doubt from the general public.
Although starting out as an independent platform for younger audiences, Instagram has since recently been absorbed by Facebook, and currently acts under them. Although many may find such a thing to make the website unfavorable, it still holds great power in the social media space and has even been able to implement some of the features formerly held only by its new owner.
Pros and Cons of Instagram’s Platform
Instagram is a platform for the aesthetes present in the world, as the space often emphasizes the use of pictures over captions. This can be used to one’s advantage, however, as those handy with camerawork can present their product fantastically well on Instagram. Those also well versed in the site can attempt to have their advertisement go viral, and from there the followers do all the work.
Looking at the other side of the spectrum, it must be recognized that because Instagram caters to a younger audience, the demographic is obviously younger. Whether this is seen as a pro or con heavily depends on what is being marketed, but since it is a limitation in many aspects one can argue that it gives this platform a slight disadvantage. Another factor to think about is the idea that Instagram is not necessarily a very business-minded platform. Although there is a marketplace aspect to the site, it is not as fleshed out or visited as Facebook’s version of the function.
With a controversial start, Snapchat has risen to be a large contender in the world of social media. However, this platform functions rather differently from the others listed here, making its inclusion in the marketing world interesting and sometimes riskier than other social media sites in its class.
Pros and Cons of Snapchat’s Platform
The big pro of Snapchat is that your ad is much more likely to be retained when someone views it. This is mostly because when someone opens a message or views anything else on the platform, it disappears after the user moves on from it. Such a function makes users much more likely to view your advertisement in full, as there is the knowledge that one may never see it again.
Glancing at the risks, there are two main ones marketers must consider. The first is that ads with a lot of information may quickly be forgotten, as the same “one view and it’s gone” function mentioned before means that users won’t be able to go back and look for any websites or dates that they might have forgotten. The other issue is the quite limited demographic scope. Put simply, Snapchat is mostly used by teenagers and younger audiences for that matter. Like Instagram, this means that any marketers wishing to target older audiences may lose out when choosing this platform.
Another colossal digital space that has made a dent in the social media world quite recently is Twitter. The media giant is famous for its many posts, chats, and hashtags that have helped shape our current social culture today. Even huge personalities such as celebrities and even U.S. politicians have made the site a place to amplify their views and ideas.
Pros and Cons of Twitter’s Platform
No one is more famous for its hashtags than Twitter itself. Along with all the glory exists a powerful tool for networking and marketing alike. Hashtags hold great power in the sense that if someone wants your product or something similar, they can type in a hashtag to get immediate results for their desires. With this in mind, having the right hashtags associated with a product or business can greatly boost its visibility and fame. Another bonus is Twitter’s tools for tagging, letting one zero in on their audience.
With all the benefits Twitter offers, so too comes some downsides. One serious thing to consider is Twitter’s less than reliable analytics. For quite some time Twitter has been noted to provide less than accurate statistics and metrics to marketers, leading to less efficiency when making a plan of attack towards a certain audience. Twitter’s lighting fast pace can also bog a marketer down as an advertisement could be overlooked rather easily amongst all the other information presented to users at a time.
TikTok became an internet sensation back in the mid-2010s and continues to be a staple of social media and entertainment to this very day. Unlike the other platforms mentioned on this list, TikTok most notably consists of short videos for quick-cut enjoyment. This provides for an interesting experience, and marketers may notice that users interact with this site much differently than others.
Pros and Cons of TikTok’s Platform
A great marketing feature ingrained in TikTok is the immediate presentation of a “For You” page. Unlike other sites such as Instagram or Facebook which first show the user posts from those they follow, TikTok first presents its users with a page showing content from outside creators. This makes discovering new accounts and content much easier, and works great for those trying to broaden their audience scope.
Along with unique benefits also comes unique downfalls as well. One major factor to consider is the limitations TikTok puts on its creators. Unlike other platforms that allow the user to express themselves in a multitude of ways, TikTok most notably only provides content in the form of short videos and nothing else. This may make advertising a bit harder, as users of this site often expect high-quality content that may need much more time and labor than a photo shoot.
The premier video viewing site, YouTube has stayed strong in the world of media since its humble beginnings in 2005. It has maintained its monopoly on being the one-stop for videos of all sorts from music to user reviews. Due to the increased viewership time and frequency, marketing here can potentially be an awfully rewarding endeavor.
Pros and Cons of YouTube’s Platform
The great advantage of utilizing YouTube for marketing purposes is the number of approaches one can take in terms of advertisement. Sure, you could buy add space before and after videos, but the option of simply creating your own videos is also possible, and much cheaper. Other great options exist such as collaborating with an already popular YouTube personality or sponsoring a famous Youtuber to get a defacto ad inside of a video itself.
Common cons associated with this platform are the amount of time it takes to produce content, and how much hands-on work needs to be done. In terms of time, creating or making ads for YouTube may take up a considerable amount of time compared to other outlets, and may take much more effort. Another concept to look out for is that you will end up having to do most of the marketing tactics yourself, with little help from any follower base or hashtag.
A true site for professionals, LinkedIn can be an amazing way for professionals of all types and classes to find each other and work together. No other site has managed to do this just as well, and with a monopoly on such a niche comes an opportunity for marketers looking to corner certain audiences and demographics
Pros and Cons of LinkedIn’s Platform
A great reason to market on LinkedIn is simply the fact that all of its users are professionals. Unlike Instagram or Snapchat, a large number of this platform’s users are in fact business-minded, and looking for networking opportunities. With this knowledge, a marketer might feel safer knowing that their advertisements may be more closely looked upon and inspected.
On the flip side of that coin is the limited scope of LinkedIn, unlike Facebook with a massive active user base, LinkedIn cannot produce the same numbers, and many of the demographics that exist outside of the business world will most obviously be left out.
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