Which Social Network Drives the Most Sales?
It’s a valid question.
Social networks all have various uses for marketing, but not all social networks are equally effective or serve the same purpose.
The social media platform that drives the most sales overall, is definitely YouTube. This is due to engaging, informational video content that can provide more information than other social networks can.
However, the social media platform that requires the most time and effort to market on, is also YouTube – creating videos is a lot more work than creating Tweets. Obviously each social network has pros and cons, but finding where the pros outweigh the cons is the secret to marketing your eCommerce business on social media.
As you can see, YouTube is the most likely social network to be used as the only step in a funnel, with Facebook a close second. Meanwhile, Twitter is last, and all of which is to be expected – Facebook ads are known to have huge potential for success, YouTube’s video content can contain a lot more info than just a text post or image, while marketing on Twitter can feel very “cold”.
Twitter isn’t successful as the only or first step in a funnel because the content is limited to 140 characters, and also competes for attention with ALL of the other Tweets on a user’s feed. This isn’t to say that Twitter is bad for marketing your eCommerce business, it’s instead useful for purposes that sales-driving giants Facebook and YouTube, aren’t.
Twitter isn’t that great at cold-selling a product, because the content is limited to 140 characters, so the best you can hope for out of a Tweet is that they click through to learn more – not click through already set on purchasing your product. For example, let’s take a look one of the largest, most successful companies that sells products online: Best Buy.
While Best Buy has a main Twitter account, they also run @BestBuySupport – short Tweets are a perfect medium to communicate with customers who have questions and need help. Can you do this on Youtube or Facebook? You COULD send the Best Buy channel or page a message, but they’re not a dedicated support team who know what you need. Even if they were, providing public Tweets as customer support accomplishes two things for Best Buy:
Overall, Twitter is the best platform for Best Buy to provide customer support.
We’ve already seen that Twitter is probably the best in terms of open, public communication between customers and businesses. What about other social networks, what do they provide? Well, you need to analyze each social network, it’s main uses, and decide if there’s a way that you can take the main use of that platform and use it to promote your eCommerce business. Don’t try to make each social network something it’s not, for example: don’t try to use YouTube updates in place of Tweets in order to announce sales.
Let’s look at LinkedIn, primarily used for business and professional purposes, rather than communicating with family or friends. Not only that, you generally don’t advertise for products and such on LinkedIn. How can LinkedIn be used for eCommerce?
Well, seeing as it’s main purpose is business networking, you probably shouldn’t put a focus on it, as an eCommerce entrepreneur. However, you can still utilize it, in the way it was intended. Network by looking for business partners, other companies that may want to sell your products, companies/manufacturers that have products they could sell to you, etc.
How did I come to the above conclusion? Well, I use LinkedIn, and I know how most users I’ve interacted with on LinkedIn use it. Generally you want whoever is running your social media marketing to be familiar with all of the platforms you’re working with and their main purposes, but if you’re a one-person marketing team for your eCommerce business, there are a few easy ways to get familiar:
In conclusion, there is no clear number #1 social network for your eCommerce business. Instead, each social network has pros and cons, with some having more pros than others. In order to find out which has more pros in the context of your business, you need to analyze each one and figure out how it can benefit the promotion of your business.
Oscar Wong runs the WrongWriting blog, which covers marketing through social media and high-quality content. He focuses on promoting eCommerce and online businesses through building quality customer relationships on blogs, email, and on social media networks.