The ‘Big 4’ social platforms: Pros & Cons.
Updated: Jun 16
Social Media Noob to Pro - Part 2 In this series, we uncover the secrets that agencies use to build brands, and multiply sales using Facebook and other social channels.
In Part 2, we look at: The ‘Big 4’ social platforms: Pros & Cons.
Check out these numbers... Whichever platform you choose, there is a HUGE audience waiting, but each has its strengths and weaknesses.
Facebook: 2.4 billion monthly active users
Instagram: 1 billion monthly active users
Twitter: 330 million monthly active users
LinkedIn: 300 million monthly active users
If you’re a small business, like a restaurant or electrician, a platform like Facebook could be a perfect place to start your social strategy. With Facebook, you can build a profile that includes links to your website and details about your menu or services.
Once your profile is ready to go, you can start posting regular updates about your business, “like” other pages, and interact with your customers by answering comments or messages. Business profiles also allow other Facebook users to give you reviews. Facebook pros:
Huge reach (including the broadest range of audiences)
The best targeting options in online advertising
Great for both B2C and B2B marketing
Engaging ad formats
Almost zero organic reach (nowadays)
Fewer opportunities for ads on the feed than there once was
Not as popular with Gen-Z prospects
You need to create a lot of visual content
Further reading: How to make your links look pretty on Facebook
For businesses that are offering a professional service, B2B brands, or publishing companies, LinkedIn is another great way to grow your follower base. LinkedIn is basically the Facebook for career-related networking.
Here you can create a profile or company page, and start building an audience of professionals from your industry, and then use public posts and messaging to push out your company updates. Brands can also use messaging and comment features to interact with their audiences, or users who comment on their posts.
The definitive B2B platform
Business-minded user base
Excellent targeting options
Allows you to target decision-makers and high-value prospects
Written content is less demanding than more visual networks
Exporting analytics data needs to be easier
The interface isn’t as intuitive as it should be
Further reading: How to interact as your business on LinkedIn
Instagram is based on a visual feed with posts showing photos and short videos. Users can also post live videos or create Instagram Stories that disappear after one day. Like the social networking platforms above, users can interact with others through tags, likes, comments, or direct message.
This platform would be helpful to businesses that want to take a more visual approach to their branding and use photographs to update followers about their food, goods, or products in a crisp, clean way.
Fast-growing user base
Excellent targeting options
Connects you with Millennials and Gen Z
A great visual branding tool
Creating enough visual content can be demanding
Minimal organic reach
Further reading: How to create your first Instagram Story
A Twitter account could be helpful to businesses in many different industries, from accommodation to accounting. This platform - as with the others - allows you to create a profile where you can list and link company information.
You can then use Twitter to post about company updates, tag related businesses or customers in posts, retweet positive customer tweets, and respond to customer questions via tweet or direct messages. Like Facebook, you can also post content like photos or videos.
Highly-engaged audience always on the lookout for new content
Quick reaction from your audience
Engagement revolves around conversation
A good source of traffic
Organic reach means you’re not entirely dependent on ads
Content lifespan is short (although you can republish)
Requires a lot of content
Previously, Part 1: Why you need Social, and where to start. Next up,