Your guide to each platform and the benefits

Select the platform that best fits your business goals and the needs of your target audience, then engage them with great content. When making your choice, consider the platforms your audience is likely to be using and the kinds of content they find engaging such as articles, images, videos or guides. 

If you are just starting out, begin with one or two platforms that present the most opportunity for a return on investment, and focus your time and energy there.

Facebook

Facebook has a wealth of options for any type of business. With its broad demographic reach, sheer volume of users and variety of content display, it is a great platform to start with.

Demographics

  • The most broad demographics of any platform
  • 62.5% of Australia’s total population use it
  • Falling in popularity with teenagers
  • 51% of users are aged between 20-39

Why do people use it?

  • It is the go-to social network
  • To stay connected with friends and family
  • Browse the newsfeed, discover new things, follow news and brands

What is it good for?

  • Build a community around your brand
  • Reach new audiences
  • Generate leads
  • Direct traffic to your website
  • Becoming the most-used platform for video

Downside

  • Limited organic reach
  • Competitive

Twitter

Twitter suits those businesses that target ‘information junkies’. It also suits those that are about in-the-moment developments, topical and timely information including industries such as software, tech, marketing, sports, news, politics, and finance.

Demographics

  • Largest user group is aged 18-39
  • Slightly skewed towards males
  • Popular with tech, marketing, entertainment news and politics enthusiasts
  • More urban than rural

Why do people use it?

  • Keep up-to-date with breaking news, quick updates and articles
  • High tendency to follow brands
  • Many are spectators rather than active participants

What is it good for?

  • Real-time participation
  • Build relationships with customers, suppliers and influencers
  • Quickly connect with people across the world
  • Build brand loyalty

Downside

  • Only 140 characters per ‘tweet’

Instagram

Instagram suits those businesses that have a strong visual element, for example restaurants, fashion, food, travel and design. It pairs well with Facebook and/or Twitter.

Demographics

  • Dominant in 18-29 age group
  • 90% of global users are under 35
  • Skewed towards young women

Why do people use it?

  • Get inspired by friends, influencers and brands through photos and videos
  • Find out what’s trending
  • Showcase life in ‘artsy’, visual way

What is it good for?

  • Visual storytelling
  • Build relationships
  • Increase awareness
  • Engage with fans
  • Leverage influencers
  • Grow organic reach

Downside

  • Mobile-based platform, with limited desktop functionality

Pinterest

Pinterest is particularly appropriate for businesses that have a strong visual and aspirational element, and that target women. E-commerce businesses can benefit from using this platform – popular themes are weddings, DIY projects, fashion, exercise, beauty, photography and food.

Demographics

  • Largest user group are ages 25-54
  • Predominantly female users
  • Affluent and educated

Why do people use it?

  • Discover new things and plan their lives
  • Get inspiration
  • Collect ideas

What is it good for?

  • Showcase brand personality with curated and original content
  • Grow organic reach
  • Drive traffic to website
  • E-commerce - purchasers referred from Pinterest tend to spend more than those from other social platforms

Downside

  • Mobile-based platform, with limited desktop functionality

Linkedin

A platform for those with a Business-to-Business focus, for example professional services, sales and tech companies.

Demographics

  • Skewed to 35+ age group
  • A significant proportion are decision makers or hold senior positions

Why do people use it?

  • Professional networking
  • Create business connections and find jobs
  • Follow brands / companies

What is it good for?

  • Business development
  • Build strategic partnerships
  • Position as thought leaders
  • Get straight to the decision maker

Downside

  • Not as relevant for Business-to-Consumer industries.

Sources

  • entrepreneur.com/article/230020
  • blog.bufferapp.com/how-to-choose-a-social-network; adweek.com/socialtimes/files/2014/10/social-platform-cheat-sheet.png
  • blog.wishpond.com/post/72672192941/social-media-marketing-which-platform-isright-for
  • businessnewsdaily.com/7832-social-media-for-business.html
  • We are Social Report 2016
  • Sensis Social Media Report 2015