The 5 Varieties of Social Media and Professionals & Cons of Every (Analysis)


Entrepreneurs generally use social media to increase brand awareness, generate leads, and improve traffic.

For those who’re tasked with beginning a social media technique on your firm, you could be questioning which sort of platforms you ought to be on. Your platform selection will probably change based mostly in your viewers.

The record of social media platforms is rising, and well-known platforms like Fb are at all times evolving and including new options.

With a larger and larger want for a social presence and an amazing quantity of platform decisions, it may be arduous to choose which social channels to make use of.

You won’t need to unfold your self too skinny by managing a channel on each possible platform, however you additionally don’t need to miss nice brand-awareness alternatives.

That can assist you make knowledgeable selections about which platforms to make use of, this submit will information you thru among the core forms of social media, examples of platforms inside every class, and the professionals and cons that every sort would possibly current.

By the tip, it is best to have a a lot clearer concept of what sort of social media strategy will work for your small business.

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Social Networking

Examples of Main Platforms

Social networking is presumably probably the most conventional type of social media.

Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are sometimes referred to as “networking” platforms as a result of they permit person accounts to work together with one another in quite a lot of alternative ways.

Skilled Makes use of

For those who’re a small enterprise, like a restaurant, a platform like Facebook could possibly be an ideal place to begin your social technique. With Fb, you’ll be able to construct a enterprise profile that features hyperlinks to your web site and particulars about your menu.

As soon as your profile is all arrange, you’ll be able to submit common updates about your small business, “like” different pages, and reply buyer submit feedback or messages. Enterprise profiles additionally permit different Fb customers to present you evaluations.

You may also leverage Fb’s group characteristic and arrange a group web page for patrons to ask questions or rave about your services and products.

In reality, we discovered that companies that leverage social media communities will see glorious leads to the advertising technique.

In keeping with our State of Social Media Survey, 90% of entrepreneurs say constructing an lively on-line group is essential to a profitable social media technique in 2023.

This is sensible, contemplating our Consumer Trends survey discovered 20% of social media customers joined a web based group previously three months, and 22% actively participated in a single.

For firms trying to provide an expert service, B2B or publishing firms, LinkedIn is one other nice option to develop your following. LinkedIn emphasizes career-related networking.

Manufacturers trying to construct an viewers of execs from a sure business can create a business profile there, categorize it with an business sort, after which use posts and messaging to publish updates.

They’ll additionally use messaging and remark options to work together with their audiences, or customers who touch upon their posts.

A Twitter account could possibly be useful to firms in a large spectrum of industries, from leisure to e-commerce. This platform equally lets you create a profile the place you’ll be able to record and hyperlink firm info.

You’ll be able to then use Twitter to submit about firm updates, tag firms or clients in posts, retweet constructive buyer tweets, and reply to buyer questions by way of tweet or direct messages.

Like Fb, you too can submit content material like photographs or movies.

On all three networks, customers can simply talk with others via easy actions like tagging, hashtagging, commenting, non-public messaging, reacting to posts, and re-sharing content material.

Other than social interplay, newsfeeds on widespread social networking platforms are designed to indicate off a mixture of textual content and visuals, fairly than one major content material sort.

This flexibility makes social networking platforms simple to start a social technique on as a result of you’ll be able to experiment with totally different types of content material earlier than branching out to platforms that require extra particular content material varieties.

Right here’s an instance of Fb’s newsfeed:

Facebook newsfeed

For many who need to dabble in video or graphics, these platforms could possibly be an ideal place to check this new content material.

With the expansion of video advertising, many have begun to launch extra superior options like Facebook Stories and Twitter’s live streams.

Platforms like Fb and Twitter have additionally began to encourage native video and photograph uploads extra closely.

Lately, Facebook even adjusted its algorithms to favor reside video and picture uploads. This has brought on most of these native content material to achieve larger person engagement.

For those who’re nonetheless undecided the place to get began, try our newbie’s guides for Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Professionals and Cons



Picture Sharing

Instance of Main Platforms

One of many largest platforms focusing on photograph sharing is Pinterest. Pinterest describes itself as a “visible discovery engine” for customers in search of cooking, fashion, house decor, and normal visible inspiration.

For those who’re questioning why Instagram is not talked about right here — don’t be concerned! We’ll have extra on that after we get to the video platforms. 

Just like the social networking platforms above, Pinterest customers on most photo-sharing platforms can work together with others via tags, likes, feedback, or direct messages.

Skilled Makes use of

Picture-sharing platforms can be useful to firms like eating places or shops that need to take images, show content material, and replace followers about their meals, items, or merchandise in a crisp, clear manner.

Pinterest is well-suited for ecommerce firms, resembling those that promote house items, and companies that would really like a spot to share crisp standalone product pictures with hyperlinks.

It equally affords a photo-based feed with posts that may embody a photograph and quick description. The platform additionally permits all customers to hyperlink on to web sites or product touchdown pages in posts.

One attention-grabbing facet of the platform is that customers can coronary heart posts from others, or assign them to a themed “board.” For instance, customers would possibly make boards centered round subjects like “Inspirational Quotes” or “Bed room merchandise.”

As soon as a board is created, different customers can even observe it. A enterprise may doubtlessly make a board with their very own product posts, or discover their merchandise on one other person’s board.

Right here’s an example of what a board appears like:

Pinterest Home and DIY board

Earlier than getting began on a platform like Pinterest, you’ll need to decide whether or not your objective is to achieve model consciousness or link-based visitors.

When selecting a platform, it’s possible you’ll need to take into account your content-related bandwidth. Each require visible imagery, however you may also want to incorporate video creation inside your technique.

Professionals and Cons


  • These sorts of platforms assist with model consciousness. Roughly 80% of Pinterest users say they’ve discovered about services or products on the app.
  • Pinterest offers an outlet for displaying off visible content material or product photographs.


  • Maintenance on these platforms would possibly require a photograph funds or devoted manufacturing time.
  • Some platforms, require you to submit from a cellular app.

Video Sharing

Examples of Main Platforms

Skilled Makes use of

Roughly 88% of marketers say video provides them a powerful ROI and 90% really feel the extent of video competitors has elevated.

Including a video platform to your social technique may make your model look related and hold you up to the mark together with your rivals.

Video will be useful to a variety of industries. Whereas a restaurant may have a vlog with cooking ideas, a know-how firm would possibly focus its video technique round product demos.

That can assist you pin down a technique that’s proper on your business and repair, check out our video marketing guide.

With regards to long-form video, YouTube is likely one of the main platforms.

Whereas YouTube has the bigger audience base and better SEO capabilities, Vimeo’s smaller platform may be very community driven.

YouTube additionally appears to have higher alternatives for advertisers and monetization, whereas Vimeo affords viewers the perk of no pre-roll ads.

For an extended record of similarities and variations, try this head-to-head piece the place we examine the enterprise capabilities of Vimeo and YouTube.

Together with YouTube and Vimeo, the extra conventional social networking platforms have additionally begun to embrace video advertising extra aggressively.

In the previous few years, Fb launched Fb Tales and Facebook Live, and added a tab on their cellular app devoted to video. In the meantime, Twitter has allowed customers to launch reside video streams that are powered by its Periscope software.

One other prime contender for video platforms is Instagram. You are in all probability pondering, “However is not Instagram a photo-sharing app like Pinterest?”

Nevertheless, to compete with apps like TikTok, Instagram has shifted away from being a photo-sharing app.

In reality, Head of Instagram Adam Mosseri clarified in 2021, “We’re now not a photo-sharing app or a sq. photo-sharing app.”

Whereas customers can nonetheless submit photographs to Instagram, the platform primarily promotes Reels and video tales. It is also price mentioning that Instagram video posts are greater than twice as likely to generate engagement than picture posts.

Professionals and Cons



Interactive Media

Examples of Main Platforms

Apps like Snapchat and TikTok permit customers to share photographs and movies, additionally they have quite a lot of distinctive interactive and extremely experimental options.

These two apps embody AR/VR filters, musical overlays, and interactive video games. Their viewers bases are additionally prominently Gen-Z.

Skilled Makes use of

As a result of primarily massive companies are just starting to experiment with these new functions, entrepreneurs who’re simply starting a social technique don’t have to prioritize these interactive apps earlier than conventional social networking platforms.

The massive firms on these platforms have a tendency to provide excessive production-level content material. Manufacturers with massive followings may also publish Snapchat Tales, or movies which might be curated from followers.

And not using a high-budget or large on-line following, these methods could be troublesome for an organization that’s simply beginning out on social.

Brands and influencers on these apps are likely to cater their content material to the platforms’ youthful audiences. For instance, on Snapchat, you would possibly see tales that current magnificence tutorials, wellness ideas, information, or fashionable new merchandise.

For those who’re actually occupied with interactive media, there are nonetheless just a few viable methods you might become involved with Snapchat or TikTok.

Whereas main manufacturers, like VICE and BuzzFeed have grow to be Snapchat Uncover companions, the typical enterprise can nonetheless create a Snapchat enterprise account that may be searched and friended by users.

This account lets you ship publish non permanent tales, similar to particular person accounts can. Nevertheless, these with a enterprise account can even purchase ad space.

Right here’s a complete video that explains use Snapchat:

For those who’ve arrange an account, try this information to getting started on Snapchat.

TikTok, an app based mostly round short, repetitive clips affords five types of advertising options for companies. Whereas massive companies could discover worth in all 5, smaller companies could lean extra in the direction of “In-Feed Advertisements.”

These adverts are 9-15 second clips that may be skipped by the person.

Guess is one notable model that has used its account to create trending campaigns with fashionable hashtags. Universal Pictures has additionally had influencers create posts to advertise its movies.

For those who do take a look at out these platforms, you would possibly need to ensure that your business and content material suits in with the young age demographic.

You must also attempt to correctly estimate the money and time that may go into preserving these accounts up-to-date and related.

For those who’re not sure of how quick video adverts can profit your small business, keep in mind short-form movies have the highest ROI when in comparison with different video codecs.

Moreover, 54% of social media marketers report utilizing short-form movies like TiKTok movies and IG Reels of their technique.

Professionals and Cons



  • Producing common content material could possibly be costly and time-consuming.
  • Enterprise accounts aren’t promoted up-front on the Snapchat interface. You might need to promote your channel in your web site or different social channels as a result of customers might want to seek for you with your Snapcode or username.
  • Snapchat and TikTok are restricted to cellular and aren’t as simple to make use of.

Running a blog/Neighborhood

Examples of Main Platforms

Tumblr and Reddit each permit customers to submit about attention-grabbing area of interest subjects, like memes, occasions, politics, and pop-culture.

When customers publish a submit, these platforms permit different customers to share them or add to the dialog with their very own commentary.

Skilled Makes use of

Each running a blog and group constructing platforms could possibly be useful to those that need to encourage dialogue round very area of interest industries or subjects.

For instance, on these platforms, you would possibly see dialogue about something from alternative health to machine learning.

By blogging, you’ll be able to write posts about subjects in your organization’s business and hyperlink them to your product or web site.

Whereas many individuals have a weblog on their web site, platforms like Tumblr could be nice to make use of should you haven’t set this characteristic up — or simply need to see what others in your business are running a blog about.

With a dialogue web site like Reddit, you might share a hyperlink or a submit a few particular subject on a dialogue board associated to your business and see how customers reply.

You might additionally begin your personal board if a subject you’re trying to encourage dialogue on doesn’t have one but.

These two platforms particularly encourage internet chatter and submit shares from customers that care about the identical subjects.

Each additionally permit customers to observe you or subscribe to your blogs or Reddit boards so your content material may present up on their feeds. Right here’s an instance of what Reddit’s feed appears like.

Reddit feed

When somebody publishes one thing on Reddit, different customers can up-vote or down-vote it. Up-voting makes a submit present up increased in Reddit feeds whereas down-voting does the alternative.

On Tumblr, the feeds are organized by time. Nevertheless, a submit can present up increased when it’s re-shared by different customers. When a person shares or interacts together with your Tumblr content material, they give it a note.

Once they reshare, they’ve the choice to submit a remark with the submit that will get added to a thread.

Right here’s an instance of how notes and threads can be utilized to encourage dialogue:

Tumblr music recommendation thread

Professionals and Cons


  • Each platforms mean you can share textual content posts, photographs, and movies about your small business, model, or particular person ideas.
  • These platforms allow you to begin conversations a few subject.
  • Each platforms permit linking to outdoors web sites.


  • Longer weblog posts would possibly take time to craft or write.
  • Getting downvoted on Reddit or no response from Tumblr customers means your posts could go unseen.
  • Your viewers could be too area of interest or restricted to only these on the precise platform you employ.

A Few Issues to Think about

Earlier than you begin logging in and organising your accounts on a bunch of platforms, you should definitely take into account these elements:

  • How a lot time do it’s a must to dedicate to strategizing round a social platform?
  • Do you’ve sources for creating graphics or movies?
  • Do your targets contain boosting model consciousness, or visitors and income?
  • Will you want an extra employees member to run this platform, or will it’s simple to keep up?

When you’re on a platform or two, you should definitely keep within the know of the way it’s altering and what entrepreneurs are doing. For a present outlook, try our Ultimate Guide to Social Media Marketing.

social media content calendar


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