social media marketing

By Rieva Lesonsky

Do you know where your customers are hanging out on social media? Just like being back in high school and trying to fit in with the “cool kids,” social media success requires constantly watching and observing what the people you want to impress are doing and then doing the same. No matter how many followers your business has on social media, if you’re not reaching your target audience, it won’t help your business.

To find out where your customers are spending time on social media and what they’re doing once they sign in, start with analytics. Use the free analytics tools available on social media sites to track and dissect your audience before your build your social media marketing plan.

Do your customers have questions about your products or services, or are they using the platform to see what other people are purchasing? What kinds of posts or tweets are getting shared and which stagnate? If customers do click through to your website, how long do they stay? All these and more are questions you need to find the answers to.

Although what works for some businesses and industries won’t work for others, here are some demographics to get you started:

  • Facebook is still the most popular social media site for adults, but less so for teens. Some 3 million young people ages 13 to 24 have left Facebook since January 2011. Most users are college-educated males over age 55.
  • LinkedIn, which has carved out a niche for itself in the business and professional category, has increased engagement and is populated by a high-income and highly educated user base.
  • Snapchat, the hot photo-sharing app, has a mostly young female audience and very high engagement.

Here are more facts from the latest Pew Research study:

  • Pinterest (21 percent) is now more popular than Twitter (18 percent) among Internet users.
  • Women are four times more likely to be Pinterest users than men.
  • Twitter and Instagram are still youth-dominated platforms, while 23 percent of Internet users aged 50+ use Pinterest.
  • Contrary to popular belief, most people aren’t using multiple social networks. Over 50 percent of Internet users either don’t use any social networks, or use just one (usually Facebook).
  • Facebook and Instagram users are the most engaged. Around 60 percent of their users sign in every day (compared to 46 percent of Twitter users).