According to GlobalWebIndex, the time spent by many people on social networking sites daily is about 1.72 hours. This may not appear like such a long time, but this is merely an average for common folks; typically, those who don’t have much to do can actually spend as much as 7 hours a day simply keeping tabs on their Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts.
These findings are considered some of the factors behind the motivation of most businesses to branch out their online presence to top social media sites. Social media sites are like the coffee shops of the digital realm—people love hanging out in these places. Therefore, if your business needs to net in more customers or supporters, you will not go wrong by using today’s most popular social media apps and by having a focused team constantly tracking these.
Apart from that fact, social media platforms have many additional features formulated to truly serve business industries, especially in marketing their brand and further harnessing sales.
What Are the Top 5 Social Media Apps for Businesses Today?
1. Facebook — As everybody knows, it is the brainchild of former Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg and a few college friends. It’s now one of the longest-operating social media sites. Facebook has been around since 2004.
2. Twitter — It’s an online social networking service that enables users to send and read short 140-character messages called tweets. Registered users can read and post tweets, but unregistered users can still get information here and read public tweets.
3. Instagram — This is a mobile photo-sharing app and social network that was created in 2010 by founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger. In 2012, Facebook purchased the service for $1 billion, and as of December 2014, Instagram has more than 300 million users or account holders. The name Instagram is an amalgamation of the words instant (inspired by instant cameras) and telegram.
4. YouTube — This is a video-sharing website headquartered in San Bruno, California, United States, which was created in 2005. The site allows users to upload, view, and share videos. Available content includes everything from original videos (tutorials, reviews, demos, vlogs) to TV clips to music videos and other content.
5. LinkedIn — This is a business-oriented social networking site which came about in 2002 and was launched in 2003. It is commonly used for professional networking and is estimated to currently have 300 million users.
What Makes These the Best Social Media Platforms for Business?
· Best in Versatility: Facebook
– It remains to be the most popular social media site, especially for increasing brand awareness for enterprises. It offers a bounty of features that go beyond typical social networking. It’s worth mentioning as well that Facebook covers most of the main functionalities of other top social media apps, as well as the following:
- It can display various types of content including images (Facebook will even allow you unlimited access to Shutterstock to make ad creation easier), videos (YouTube, Vine, DailyMotion), and written content.
- It has Page Insights, a feature that provides metric data (like Google Analytics) so you can monitor your page’s performance.
- You can use hashtags here. Recently, Facebook has made hashtags clickable so your posts can be included in all related topics even outside your own network.
- Facebook’s free app for Android and iOS likewise will allow you to post content from your mobile devices, so wherever you may find yourself in the world, you can easily stay on top of your online marketing scheme.
- Facebook has provisions for ad creation and business promotion.
– Its top users are: L Brands Inc. (which, by the way, include Victoria’s Secret) with a total of over 45 million fans; Abercrombie & Fitch Co. with 19 million Facebook fans, and Gap Inc. with 15 million fans all over the globe.
· Best in Simplicity and Efficiency: Twitter
– The 140-character limit may appear to be a challenge in delivering important messages, but it’s actually the pinnacle of efficiency. It will prompt you to be fiercely direct and witty. With the calculated and smart use of words, triggering curiosity and interest can be instantaneous through tweets.
– If you have more to say, it’s no issue to tweet again, unlike with other social media platforms.
– Also, it has Buffer, which is a tool that will allow you to stockpile and schedule content in advance for timely release without requiring you to return to the site frequently to get around with distribution. Buffer will allow you to be more organized and save time.
– Retweeting is a breeze, so your message can get shared easily and exponentially in the World Wide Web.
– Businesses that generate a lot of interest through Twitter are:
- L Brands Inc. with 4 million followers
- Burberry with 4.62 million followers
– You can earn money from Twitter, too, especially if you have a lot of followers like Kim Kardashian (paid $10,000 per tweet), Charlie Sheen ($9,500 per tweet), Khloe Kardashian ($8,000 per tweet) and Snooki ($7,800 per tweet).
· Best in Visual Impact and Social Engagement: Instagram
– It’s been branded the “king of social engagement” by Forrester, with top global brands’ posts generating an engagement rate of 4.21% per follower (this number is 58 times more than Facebook and 120 times more than Twitter).
– For teenagers, Instagram is reportedly the most important social media platform as it was originally just intended for smartphone usage.
– The site has its own analytics program. Through this, determining which images resonate particularly well with audiences is a breeze, so improvements or adjustments can be carried out accordingly to increase favorable responses.
– Ways to generate successes with the Instagram app:
- Tell a story with your captions.
- Show behind-the-scenes action for your business so your audience can be provided insights to all the work you do.
- Hold contests.
- Provide followers exclusive previews of much-anticipated products and services.
- Once Instagram opens up its advertising options to all businesses (and not just highly followed global ones), you may use the provision. It can prove to be quite advantageous to you as it has been for the select few already allowed the opportunity by the site.
– Among the most successful users of Instagram are Lululemon Athletica Inc. stores (1.9 million users), Lauren Conrad (who regularly updates customers and followers about her collection of brands on Instagram), and the American magazines Southern Living, Country Living, Redbook, Family Fun and many others.
– Considered close runners-up to Instagram are Pinterest and Tumblr – two other photo-based social media platforms.
· Best in Entertaining and Establishing Relevance: YouTube
– There’s no questioning the power of videos in attracting audiences, and that’s what YouTube is all about. At the same time, it’s very effective in demonstrating the relevance of products. Retail companies are big fans of YouTube, especially in delivering announcements and showing how products are used, as well as linking to famous YouTube personalities for unbiased (and sometimes, also biased) reviews.
– According to MAVRCK.co, videos are “4 times more engaging than static content, and the information retained in 60 seconds of video is equivalent of 1.8 million words.”
– Some of the global enterprises that rely on YouTube are Apple (which uses YouTube to archive video content), Best Buy (it creates YouTube videos to inform audiences of its products and services), BlendTec (creates videos on the site to increase brand awareness and market share), and Coca-Cola (extends its traditional ads to the site for optimum brand visibility).
· Best in Building Professional Appeal and Connections: LinkedIn
– This site is a fantastic business-building tool, but it is not about the fluff. Rather, it’s all about the creation of a straight-to-the-point, impressive personal profile that’s also good enough as a brand, so meaningful professional connections can be established.
– Big companies perform a background check on smaller companies to partner with, potential employees, and other associations through LinkedIn. Therefore, if you’re a business owner, LinkedIn is the place to be for your HR managers and recruiters.
– Important elements to include in your LinkedIn account:
- A complete profile (with a good photo of yourself or your brand logo).
- My Website/Company link.
- Status updates (promote content you’ve released online—anything that will build your professional credibility)
These five social media platforms (which are all available in apps that can be downloaded on portable Web-connecting devices) can take your business marketing to a whole new level of efficacy and efficiency. They even offer a greater advantage, which is the fact that they are not yet done developing new features and functionalities that can truly boost various business industries that use their services.
In the next few months, you can expect them to come out with new provisions to benefit businesses. Stay on top of these social media apps.
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