There is no way to ignore social networks and their potential for your business.

When we talk about these channels, we are referring to an audience of billions of people.

And even when restricting the results , we will see that practically the entire population is connected to one of the platforms available on the market.

They all serve the same purpose of bringing people together, but each with slightly different characteristics.

This is one of the characteristics that make your presence in them almost mandatory.

After all, your client certainly uses social networks on the internet.

Probably more than one.

So, what will be your marketing strategy to connect with him, interact and strengthen the relationship ?

Are you going to use them for promotion or sales ?

To find customers or be found by them?

Whatever your goal, this article will provide the answers you are looking for.

Let’s talk about the main social networks and give tips on how to use them in favor of your business.

Ready to plan your next actions?

So, read on!

What is social networking?

Social network is a platform whose objective is to connect people and share information between them, both personal and professional or commercial. They materialize in the form of websites and applications, bringing together users who share the same values ​​and interests.

Although the definition today has this digital inclination, the concept behind social networks is much older than the internet itself.

In Sociology, for example, it is used in the analysis of interactions between people, groups and even organizations.

In this way, an association of residents of a certain neighborhood is still a social network, even if it meets physically and not in a virtual way.

When did social networks appear?

To answer the question of this topic, we will limit ourselves to the analysis of social networks of the digital age, so to speak.

So, it is possible to affirm that the Six Degrees website , created in 1997, is considered as the first social network in the world.

The site was online until 2001.

It allowed users to create a profile and start a friendship with other members.

It is basically the same current format, although restricted to the technology of the time.

Soon after, in 1999, the first blogs appeared and started to become popular.

And that is how they became a relevant format until today.

After the invention of blogs, social media boomed in popularity.

In the early 2000s, sites like MySpace and LinkedIn gained prominence.

At the same time, others, such as Photobucket and Flickr, introduced the concept of sharing photos online.

In 2004, Mark Zuckerberg launched what would soon become the social media giant.

The Facebook is a social networking site number of today and currently has more than 2 billion users .

Its precursor, Orkut , “passed away” in 2014, but it remained at the top of social networks for a long time, even when Face already reigned in the United States.

YouTube, in turn, emerged in 2005 and in an innovative way.

The video platform created a whole new way for people to communicate and share.

Today, it even threatens to overtake TV in terms of video consumption in the world.

In 2006, Jack Dorsey, Biz Stone, Noah Glass and Evan Williams created Twitter.

The microblogging service was inspired by text messages (SMS), allowing users to send tweets of 140 characters or less.

From 2010 onwards, other social networks like Instagram, Tumblr, Foursquare, Pinterest and Spotify started to emerge to fill specific niches.

Today, there is a huge variety of social networks.

To give you an idea, this list on Wikipedia has 47 channels of this type.

Many of them can be linked together, allowing the same post to be shared and reach as many people as possible.

All of this without sacrificing the notion of intimacy in a normal conversation.

What is the difference between social networking and social media?

It is not difficult to see social networks and social media treated as synonyms, when in fact they are not.

First, we have to understand that social media involves the technologies used to enable more interactive communication between people.

In turn, social networks are platforms inserted within this social media and that are formed by groups of people with common interests.

To be more clear, the focus of a social network is to connect people through a profile that you created and filled out according to your data.

So, when you meet people with similar interests, you can interact with them.

Social media encompasses a variety of media, such as e-mails , blogs, videos and even social networks themselves.

The term “social” reflects the main characteristic that differentiates social media from other media before the internet, such as TV and radio.

And this is due to the fact that it really promotes social interaction.

We can also say that social networks have this power to strengthen relationships and bring together people with similar interests thanks to the connection created through the technologies offered by social media.

Benefits of social media

Social networks are part of the routine of most people today.

It is difficult to find someone who does not have at least one account in any of them.

In this perspective, a brand that wants to create a lasting relationship with its audience , follow trends and generate more business opportunities, can – and should – maintain an active presence on social networks.

It doesn’t matter if your company is small or large.

For all cases, social networks can bring several benefits to your business.

And they do it much more effectively than other traditional media.

Do you want to see?

Share the company’s vision

Your profile on a social network is nothing more than the representation of your company on that platform.

So you can take advantage of it to share the vision of the business and the values ​​you believe in.

In addition, it is an opportunity to constantly reinforce the positioning of your brand.

Interact with the customer

Communication with customers and potential customers is much more personalized on social networks.

That’s because you have access to that person’s various data, which makes it easier to customize your messages.

After all, you will be in contact with each person individually.

So, there is nothing more fair than offering an exclusive and personalized approach for each one.

You will notice how people will give your brand more credibility if they are well served on any of these platforms.

Their experience in this contact counts a lot.

Possibility to segment the audience

Most social networks have their own tools to facilitate the segmentation of your message.

In practice, this allows you to reach an audience that you think will bring the greatest return.

This segmentation can be done based on interests, demographics, location and several other criteria, depending on your preference.

Just choose the one that is most convenient to achieve the proposed goals for your business.

Real-time information

An important feature of social networks is that they allow the sharing of information in real time due to the speed of the internet.

Therefore, they can be a good alternative to give a last-minute statement, announce the launch of a new product or even manage eventual crises in a timely manner, before the damage is greater.

Measurement of results

One of the great advantages of social networks and other social media over traditional media is that they provide accurate data on the performance of your strategy.

This way, you can analyze whether the segmentation of your posts are bringing the expected return, for example, and make adjustments in points necessary to optimize your actions.

The 10 most used social networks

, it is estimated that more than 100 million people use some social network.

Facebook leads, with 94% of them.

This means that your company may be missing out on great business opportunities if it does not maintain a strong presence on these platforms.

We selected the main social networks used  to give you an overview of the digital landscape.

See details about each one and elaborate your strategy.

1. Facebook

At some point, you may have heard someone say that: “If you are not on Facebook, it is because you do not exist”.

Although we must give due discount to the exaggeration of the statement, the fact is that social network is rooted in people’s daily lives.

Virtually everyone is present on the network.

According to research by Hootsuite ,  there are already 139 million active users, that is, more than half of the  population is on Facebook.

What justifies such interest?

The platform is one of the most complete and versatile, allowing to connect people, generate business and, even more in the smartphone era, viralize content.

This makes it perfect for both personal and corporate profiles.

2. Instagram

Initially, Instagram was a social network only for mobile access on devices with iOS operating system.

Its function was restricted to sharing photos in square format, imitating the old Polaroids.

With the purchase of the platform by Facebook, in 2012, the application started to run on the Android operating system.

Since then, a series of updates have been made, perfecting the initial proposal to share photos.

Today, you can post photos in different formats, post and make live videos, Stories, make boomerangs, send direct messages and many other resources to encourage interaction with followers.

To give you an idea, there are already more than 800 million users in the world .

is second in the ranking, with more than 50 million active users, second only to the United States.

3. LinkedIn

Despite being similar to other social networks, LinkedIn is focused on relationships and professional contacts.

A personal profile is like an online curriculum, in which you put your skills and experiences.

Companies, on the other hand, can use the network to find employees, recruit, disseminate material and talk about their trajectory.

There are already more than half a billion active users on the network.

, the platform reached the mark of 29 million users , which places it as the third placed in the national ranking.

4. Twitter

With more than 10 years on the air, Twitter’s popularity has declined by about 63%  from 2013 to today.

But that does not mean that it is not yet used by several specific audiences.

Worldwide, there are more than 319 million active accounts.

The company does not release accurate data on the number of users , but it is estimated that was the third country with the highest growth in users in 2016.

That is, even with the lack of interest on the part of its users, others end up adhering to it.

That’s what keeps the tool alive and, why not, interesting for your business.

Twitter is widely used for people to share moments, such as a comment about a reality TV show or some event that is in focus, for example.

5. WhatsApp

WhatsApp is the most popular instant messaging platform .

There are already more than 120 million daily active users .

Virtually everyone who has a smartphone has the app installed.

In addition to the ease of exchanging messages, the platform is free, which greatly scared telephone companies worldwide.

After all, it is interesting to remember that WhatsApp is not just text.

It is also audio, image and video.

You can even make calls and video calls for him.

In addition, the last major update on the platform made it possible to post photos to be viewed for 24 hours, as well as on Instagram and Snapchat.

6. Facebook Messenger

As of 2016, anyone who wants to communicate via Facebook chat via smartphones needs to download the Messenger app.

This has dramatically increased the number of users on this platform.

Thus, when trying to send an “inbox” message to a contact on the network, a Messenger window is opened.

And it is through it that communication takes place.

7. YouTube

From 2005 until today, YouTube has become the biggest platform for sharing online videos today.

For you to get a sense of the success of this social network, there are already more than 1 billion active users in the world.

In addition, with the phenomenon of Youtubers , the production of content and the time spent watching online videos has increased exponentially.

According to the same survey already mentioned, the platform is more popular than television itself among people aged 18 to 49 years.

Another relevant data in favor of YouTube came from a Cisco survey : by 2020, 80% of internet traffic must be through videos.

8. Snapchat

At the time of launch, Snapchat revolutionized the way to share images and videos via smartphones.

Mainly, among teenagers.

This is because snaps have the advantage of being ephemeral.

That is, they disappear for the person who received them after a certain time, which is stipulated by the person who sent them.

In addition, you have the option of snapping your profile for a period of 24 hours.

Mark Zuckerberg himself tried to acquire the company several times, but without success.

In return, he created the same functionality within his other platforms: Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp.

9. Google+

Starting from the same premise as the giant Facebook, the platform ended up failing to engage the users’ taste.

So, even though it has the “Google quality seal”, it practically fell by the wayside.

Only 9% of users actively participate in the network.

Still, it continues to try to reinvent itself and attract more active users to the platform.

And since it’s about Google, you can’t doubt it.

10. Pinterest

The platform appeared in 2010 and serves as a virtual reference wall.

In it, you can share images that you find in the navigation or even upload your own images.

You also have the option of organizing them in folders to serve as inspiration, for example.

The number of users of the platform grew by 40% last year, closing 2017 with more than 200 million active users worldwide.

Among the most recurring themes on users’ boards are fashion, gastronomy, decoration and travel.

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