It may be hard to believe, but only about five percent of people living in the United States used social media as recently as 2005. Today, over 70 percent of Americans claim they use social media. As the number of social media users has grown, so has social media marketing in 2018 or SMM.
According to the “State of Social Media 2018” report prepared by Buffer and Social Media Week, marketers use certain social media platforms more often than others. Here is a breakdown of the social platforms marketers use most often and the percentage of marketers that use each of them:
- Facebook: 96 percent
- Twitter: 89 percent
- LinkedIn: 70 percent
- Instagram: 70 percent
- YouTube: 57 percent
- Google+: 33 percent
- Pinterest: 33 percent
- Snapchat: 11 percent
Similar to how marketers tend to use different social media platforms more often than others, they also use different platforms for paid advertisements more frequently. Again, Facebook is the social media platform of choice in this regard, with 94 percent of polled marketers using Facebook for paid ads. Instagram is used by 44 percent of marketers for paid advertisements. With 26 percent of marketers using LinkedIn and Twitter, those two platforms are tied for third when it comes to sponsored ads.
The ROI of Social Media Marketing 2018
In the past, many businesses measured the return on their investment in social media in the contexts of leads, sales or both. Now, a growing number of businesses are emphasizing engagement to measure their ROI from social media. In fact, 42 percent of businesses of all sizes measure the ROI of their advertising campaigns on social media using engagement. Just 17 percent of businesses measure ROI using leads and only 15 percent use sales to gauge their social media ROI.
The Rise of Social Messaging Apps
With the organic reach of social platforms like Facebook on the decline and the popularity of social messaging apps continuing to increase, it’s impossible to discuss the current state of social media marketing without talking about messaging apps. The leading four social messaging apps are WhatsApp, Messenger, WeChat, and Viber while the top four social media apps are Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Today, more people are using the top four messaging apps than the leading social media apps. While that’s the case, only 20 percent of businesses use messaging apps for marketing purposes. To have success with social media marketing in 2018 moving forward, it’s likely that marketers will have to rely on social messaging apps at least in part to engage with their audience. Luckily, social platforms such as Facebook are expected to monetize messaging apps, which will create more opportunities for marketers in the future.
While images and links are number one and number two respectively when it comes to the type of content businesses share on social media, videos and stories are becoming increasing popular choices. Approximately 85 percent of businesses plan to share more video content this year. About 68 percent of marketers plan to create more stories on Instagram and Snapchat during 2018.
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