What are the most popular Social networks – and which should I use?

social networks

Why is it important to know which social networks are the most popular?

From a marketing and online promotion point of view it is essential to know which social networks are the most  popular and have the most visitors – as the infographic below summarizes.  Some interesting statistics are: Faceb0ook has the largest audience with a demographic of about 40 percent between 45-54, followed by the 35-44 and 25-34 age groups. LinkedIn has a very different demographic  with the largest audience between 35-44. LinkedIn  is more focussed on professional in business and industry and is used extensively by job recruiters.

Tumblr had more than 230 million active blog users on their site.  It has a very strong teen and young adult demographic and “… teens who do use Tumblr, use it a lot — 61% of 13- to 18-year-olds said they used the service several hours a week or more… ( Businessinsider)

People tend to use Twitter for news consumption and Pinterest is becoming very strong strong in the mobile domain and is expected to be the fourth largest social network in the near future.  Pinterest  users .”… already account for 48.2% of all social media sharing on iPads. Over 90% of people who use Instagram are under the age of 35″.  ( Businessinsider)

However, while numbers are important one also has to take into account other factors as well. Its not enough just to take the highest numbers and make that your target – you also have to take the user demographics and the aims and intentions of each network into account.

It is worth bearing the following in mind: “Each social media platform has a unique identity based on who uses the network and how they’re engaging on the site”.

In other words,  ask yourself what type of network is best suited to your aims and objectives.

For example, if you are marketing a product that is visually rich, like  cars or art, then a site like Pinterest is the best network to work on. Facebook is universally the most popular social network  – but is this the right social networking platform for your aims and goals?  A site like LinkedIn is possibly a better bet for those who are interested in making  professional and business connections. Twitter might be more effective for short and intense communication with your clients. Of course you can join a number of social networks and this is the most common way to make use of social media. However,  joining too many social networks can mean that you often can’t devote enough attention to each one – one should remember that interacting and posting on social media is an intense and time consuming process.

The point being made is that social networks are different with different styles and audiences. Study each social networks and spend some time researching articles and reports on the typical audience and demographics of each social network before committing  your time. A very useful introduction to the value and the differences of the main social networks is SMM 101: Which Social Media Platform Should I Use? from searchengine journal. Also have a look at http://www.socialmediatoday.com/content/which-social-media-sites-should-you-be-and-why

 

Social Media with Imaginet. shutterstock_117113278

 

photo credit: greyweed via photopin cc