choosing the right social mediaLast month my social enterprise posted an article about choosing the right social media network for your nonprofit organization. The response from organizations was great, and it made me realize that I should include it in a piece for those of you who are kind enough to follow my blog.

Social Media is the Great Equalizer

I don’t think anyone argues anymore that social media is a trend of a fad. It’s here to stay, and we’re fortunate to live in a world where we can connect with people all over the world quickly, easily and in real-time through social networking.

Social media has knocked down walls and borders and has allowed businesses, nonprofits, and practically anyone to connect in ways that are unprecedented in human history.

The following are the largest social networking platforms:

  • Facebook – 1.8 billion users.
  • WhatsApp – 1 million users.
  • Facebook Messenger – 1 million users.
  • Instagram – 600,000 users.
  • Twitter – 317,000 users.
  • Snapchat – 300,000 users.

The Pros and Cons of Facebook

By far, Facebook is the largest social media platform in the world. Nothing else comes close to it. Facebook has a lot of supporters and detractors, but for whatever it’s worth, if you’re looking to get your message out about your organization, Facebook should probably be the first place you visit.

Facebook Pros

  • Largest social media platform in the world
  • Targeted demographic advertisements
  • Robust analytics
  • Facebook Messenger
  • Facebook Live native video
  • Excellent network for sharing current news and trending hashtags
  • Ability to create lists to curate content for you and your followers
  • Real-time engagement about a trending topic with hashtags
  • Tweets appear in Google search results

Facebook Cons

  • Posts that are not boosted (sponsored) have very little organic reach (less than 1 percent)
  • Must pay for advertisements beginning at $5 per post
  • Videos auto-play as little as a 3-second view can “count” as a view even though the user did not watch the rest of the video
  • Facebook Messenger messages can only be sent from an individual account and not a Facebook Page

The Pros and Cons of Twitter

Twitter has had some challenges to its business model, and its stagnated for a time, but it’s still a force to be reckoned with, and people still use it for real-time communication. If something is newsworthy anywhere on the planet, rest assured that people are tweeting about it.

Twitter Pros

  • Excellent platform for sharing current news and using trending hashtags
  • Can curate content for yourself and followers
  • High amount of use of hashtags for targeted engagement
  • Tweets appear in Google search results

Twitter Cons

  • Many spam, bots, and phony accounts
  • Can be an aggressive environment
  • Not as dominant as in the past due to user issues and business model
  • Algorithm change no longer posts tweets as they occur, but what Twitter believes you want to see

Pros and Cons of Instagram

Instagram is an excellent platform for photo and video sharing. It’s all about visuals on Instagram and organizations can communicate their story easily on this platform through high-quality images. An image is truly worth a thousand words and hundreds of thousands of people are on Instagram daily looking for photographic inspiration.

Instagram Pros

  • Photo and video network
  • Use of hashtags
  • Can upload up to 10 videos or pictures to a single post
  • Young audience (18-34)
  • Can target demographic for sponsored ad posts

Instagram Cons

  • Spam (less than Twitter)
  • Sponsored advertisement, pay to play

Pros and Cons of Snapchat

Snapchat is currently the innovator to follow. The leading social media platforms are looking at Snapchat and copying the features of this network, which has found its niche with Millennials and Generation Z. Snapchat pioneered the 10-second and disappearing video that you’re now seeing on other platforms.

Snapchat Pros

  • Social media innovator
  • 10-second video stories
  • Originator of the use of lenses and filters
  • Audiences are primarily Millennials and Generation Z

Snapchat Cons

  • Generations older than Millennials are probably not on this platform
  • Can view content for 24 hours and then it disappears
  • Cannot pay or boost ads to increase brand awareness
  • Only people on your cell phone or who know your username will be able to find you
  • Brands have to cross-promote their Snapchat username across other types of marketing channels

For more information, please download the 5-page resource paper “How to Choose the Right Social Network for Your Nonprofit Fundraisers” from this Free Resource Page.

 

Author of “Not Your Father’s Charity: Be Bold, Dominate and Succeed in Marketing For Today’s Digital World On A Limited Budget” (Free Digital Download)

© 2017 Wayne Elsey and Not Your Father’s Charity. All Rights Reserved.