In the early days of social networking it was easy to pick which network to be on, and could be even easier to dismiss social media as a passing fad. Fast forward to the present day, and there seems to be a social network for nearly everything. Despite the growing number of networks, five really stand out.
Here is some important information about the top five social networks as of 2012.
- Facebook. With around 900 million users, Facebook is “the” social network for connecting with nearly everyone, and has become a primary channel for communication among the younger generation. Over half of Facebook users are between the ages of 18 and 34, and users spend an average of 405 minutes connected per month . If you’re looking to connect to customers, while driving brand awareness, your company should be utilizing this network.
- Linkedin. Linkedin is a social network for professionals to connect with other professionals, share their experience, and find a job. There are around 150 million users, 55% of whom are between the ages 26 and 44 and spend, on average, 21 minutes a month logged in. If you’re looking to connect with your colleagues, other businesses or potential employees, this is a great resource that allows you to do so.
- Twitter. Twitter allows users to make announcements, or find events going on nearby. With a 140 character limit per “tweet,” Twitter is great for those who are efficient with their words, which is apparently over 550 million people. The majority of twitter users are between the ages of 26 and 44 and spend an average of 89 minutes a month logged in. Twitter is a great way for small businesses to broadcast announcements and promotions, with the goal of driving traffic to other social networks.
- Google +. Google + is the closest competitor to Facebook, with many similar features. There are two major differences however. The first is the userbase, which is quite a bit smaller, at around 170 million users. The second difference is users only spend 3 minutes a month, on average, logged in. If your business has a Google Places page you’re already on Google +, and with recent changes to the platform, it should become a solid network to connect with your customers in the near future.
- Pinterest. Pinterest is a great place to discover new content and products and is one of the fastest growing social networks. Founded in 2010 and coming to prominence in 2011, the userbase is around 11.4 million, and is growing rapidly. What’s intriguing about Pinterest is that users spend, on average, 90 minutes a month logged in, which is second only to Facebook. This network is a great tool for companies to drive interest in their physical products.