Content Marketing Blog

Which social platform is best for your industry? A look at statistics for Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram & Twitter

Facebook reminded everyone last week that it remains the undisputed king of the social media jungle. The world’s most popular social network announced its second quarter results, revealing that more than 1.13 billion users were logging on every single day.

That’s a year-on-year increase of 17 per cent. But the fastest growth was unsurprisingly on mobile devices. Users accessing the site daily on a smartphone or tablet was up 22 per cent in June, to 1.03 billion.

While rivals such as Twitter experience single digit growth, Facebook continues to attract new subscribers, particularly in developing economies.

But just because Facebook is the biggest social media site, does it mean you should make it a priority for your content marketing strategy?

That, of course, will depend on who you’re targeting, what your goals are and what industry you’re in.

TrackMaven, a US-based analytics company, has just released its 2016 Social Media Impact Report, which offers some interesting insights. The report looks at the top ten industries for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn in regards to three metrics: average number of followers, average interactions per post and average posting frequency.

So, with Facebook trouncing the competition when it comes to users (and advertising dollars) let’s have a look at how it stacks up for different sectors. Maybe your marketing efforts will be better spent on one of its rivals.

Facebook 

Since it reached the 1 billion mark for daily active users in August 2015 Facebook has continued to find success with its mobile-first strategy. This marks a big a turnaround for a company that once had a notably weaker mobile offering than many of its competitors.

With enough users to make it the world’s third biggest country, Facebook is obviously the popular choice, but which businesses does it serve best in terms of followers and engagement? The TrackMaven report found that Company Pages with the highest numbers of average followers and interactions per post were those of political organisations and animation businesses. The trailer for ‘Finding Dory’ released by Disney Pixar, for example, has reached over 1 million views and 23,000 Likes. Pixar’s own Facebook page has a massive 14 million followers.

Broadcast media businesses have the highest number of average followers and also produce the highest number of posts per month. However, the most successful industries for hitting the trifecta of frequent posting, high engagement levels and followers are sports and entertainment.

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In regards to post activity the music industry, legal services and restaurants also deserve an honourable mention for ranking in the top ten. Everybody’s favourite childhood pizza place, Pizza Hut, is doing really well in terms of engagement with followers, averaging a few hundred Likes on its posts as well as high share counts.

Instagram

The USD $1 billion that Facebook paid for Instagram in 2012 looks like a bargain now. Otherwise known as Facebook’s more attractive younger sibling, the photo-sharing app continues to rack up impressive statistics. With 300 million daily active users and 4.2 billion Likes per day, Instagram is firmly cementing itself at social media’s top table. The platform’s focus on visually-rich posts, either images or video, is reflected in the industries enjoying the most success using it. The report shows that Instagram has a strong celebrity feel, with the music industry ranking the highest for follower engagement levels. Defense & Space also ranks well in Instagram, however, with some of the highest numbers of followers. Entertainment and hospitality also share a high number of followers as does Photography, which is not surprising given that the site is based on sharing images. In regards to interactions per post the music and entertainment industries rank highly here as well, with consumer electronics, luxury goods and jewellery also making the top ten. Iconic fashion label Sass n Bide have obtained a solid following of over 240K, averaging approximately 1,000 likes per post.

METALLIC MUSINGS | high shimmer and shine #amanteamore #sassandbide A photo posted by sass & bide (@sassandbide) on

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LinkedIn

With 433 million registered users LinkedIn is less than half the size of Facebook, but is comfortably the biggest player in its niche, as a social networking tool for professionals. It’s been around since 2003, but LinkedIn is still growing. In Q1 of this year, LinkedIn’s daily shares were up 40 per cent and traffic to third party publishers had grown more than 150 per cent.

Pharmaceutical companies have the highest number of followers on LinkedIn, and surprisingly (given the nature of the site) the wine and spirits industry rakes in the highest number of interactions per post. Diageo, the parent company to a huge range of brands such as Johnnie Walker and Smirnoff, often records hundred of Likes on its posts. One of the more recent posts about the Moscow Mule cocktail, for example, gained over 280 likes.

Twitter

Twitter’s Q2 financials reflected the company’s ongoing struggles. While rival social networks continue to add users at a fair old clip, Twitter’s growth has largely flat-lined. The micro-blogging site still has more than 300 million active subscribers, but that number is only growing by around 3 per cent per year.

Twitter has always maintained that it is the home of breaking news, and the TrackMaven report certainly can attest to that. Broadcast media ranked the highest for followers, whereas newspapers had the second highest number of followers as well as ranking for post frequency. Online media also made the top three for the highest number of posts. When it comes to engagement, the music industry clearly took the number one spot for interactions per post with entertainment coming in second, but with about half of the figures.

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Notable mention should also be given to the sporting goods and the farming industries, that both made the top ten for highest interactions per post. A tweet by BBC Africa about farming in Ghana recorded 235 retweets and 231 likes.

Industry Summaries

To see how your industry ranked across all platforms check out the Social Media Industry Index at the end of the report. There is definitely some strong indications of industries performing better on some social sites than others. Accounting, for example, averaged 84 interactions per post on LinkedIn for 237 posts, whereas only 13 interactions were seen from 265 tweets.

This information may come in handy when looking at the social media elements of your content marketing strategy. It is just a matter of understanding what your audience wants from your brand’s content and where they are most likely to seek out that content. While this report serves as a guide only, it will provide some helpful indication of what social platform will serve your business best and where to start concentrating your efforts.

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