The Big 6 Social Networks: An Overview for Beginners

by | Jul 5, 2014 | Blog

the big six, social networks, marketing blog


There are so many Social Networks now my head would pop off if I had to focus on all of them.

Thankfully there are a couple of big ones that we can look at, at least to get started with. This list is designed to cut down your research time a little bit by giving you an idea which network could possibly be a fit, and if you should research it further.

After reading this, your next step is to take a deep dive into 1 or 2 and really see if they will function best for your practice’s communication with its clients and customers.

1. Facebook

  • Often used for closer networks of friends and family which can be great for encouraging and leveraging testimonials and reviews.
  • Advanced and very targeted advertising platform that let’s you really narrow who sees your ad.
  • One of the largest user bases
  • Displays pictures and videos very well with long text posts.
  • Plenty of versatility with other applications and integration with other web platforms.
  • Limited organic reach due to Facebook only showing some of your posts to followers unless you pay to promote them.

2. Twitter

  • Global-style of network for people looking to connect with strangers all over the world as well as locally. Can be great for building your network
  • Perfect for listening – Find people talking about a topic and jump in on the conversation or see what people are saying about you or your business.
  • You can follow most people without needing them to follow back. This way you can get to know them before you reach out to connect.
  • Use of hashtags is very popular, making connecting around a topic or live event extremely easy.
  • 140 character limit means posts are very succinct and to the point.
  • Pictures/videos don’t always show up in news feed without clicking them open.
  • Large amounts of spam can be annoying when using the network.
  • Links to blogs/content are very popular.

3. Pinterest

  • Highly visual platform making great use of images.
  • High percentage of female users.
  • You can have multiple ‘boards’ which act as categories. People can choose to follow your board instead of everything you do. Perfect if you have multiple segments of customers or topics.
  • Length of pictures is unlimited making it great for instructions(DIY stuff) and infographics.
  • Large focus on esthetics and quality pictures and graphics.
  • Limited in terms of discussions and text.

4. Google+

  • Helps with search rankings in Google because all posts are indexed and your popularity and engagement affects how you show up in Google.
  • Connects with all other Google products like Hangouts(chatting) and Youtube.
  • High Resolution images not degraded.
  • Complete blend of pictures, video, .gifs, text and links.
  • Great for networking and discovery around topics.
  • Not as widely used as a social activity between friends and family.

5. Instagram

  • Photos, photos, photos, and videos.
  • Used for personality more than ads or selling.
  • Beneficial because it’s acceptable to post a lot of pictures, whereas Facebook friends could get annoyed at the volume.
  • Quite simple and straightforward.
  • Large use of hashtags for categorizing photos.
  • Not as great for discussions or text.

6. LinkedIn

  • Used by business professionals and companies.
  • Most beneficial for B2B companies or freelancers.
  • Biggest benefit is growing your network of working professionals.
  • Not as acceptable to post personal stuff, keep it mostly professional.
  • Mix of pictures, links, and text posts.
  • Good for communities and discussions.
  • Can help you build authority and leadership among peers and colleagues.

Happy Marketing

Joel M. Harrison

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