How to Use Social Media For Business

23 June 2021
by Archie Williamson
5 mins
How to Use Social Media For Business

With a collective global audience of approximately 4.2 billion people, social media is an incredibly valuable marketing outlet for companies of all sizes. Whether you want to build your brand through a series of high-quality posts, or advertise products to a loyal, engaged audience, social media can be tailored precisely to your core objectives.

If you are wondering how to leverage each platform, here is a quick guide to the formats, demographics and opportunities available to businesses in 2021. You don’t have to create an account on every site, but using a mix of different platforms can help you to build a more well-rounded, targeted social media strategy. 


Despite growing competition from new rivals, Facebook remains the biggest social media platform by some distance, with a monthly active user base of 2.7 billion. While it has had a reputation for attracting “boomers” in recent years, Facebook’s largest age group in the UK is 25 to 34-year-olds (25.2%), though over-55s do account for 18.4% of all users.

Facebook can be wielded effectively for any social media marketing campaign but it does excel when it comes to local sales and engagement. Around two-thirds of users on the platform say they visit a local business Facebook Page every week. Setting up a Page for your business is free so this is an excellent option if you are on a limited budget.

Content formats are varied on Facebook. You can opt for a simple text post or be more creative with photos, live videos and Stories to engage audiences organically. Those with larger budgets can also dip into advertising. Some 97% of marketers say they use paid ads on the platform.


Instagram is a visual-focused platform where brands regularly publish high-quality images and videos to younger audiences. There are now 1 billion monthly active users on Instagram, with a third of those being millennials aged between 25 to 34, of which 57% are women.

This is the place where you want to publish your most visually-arresting content. A study by HubSpot found users were most likely to engage with the Stories format when it is delivered as a short narrative featuring photos, videos and text. Stories with quizzes and polls may also be useful, depending on the target audience.

Instagram recently launched a Reels format to compete with the current trend of shorter, snackable videos on TikTok. There has also been a rise in shoppable posts where users can click on products featured within content to buy them instantly. To sell on Instagram, you need to upload your product catalogue and submit your account for review to get started.


In contrast to Instagram, Twitter’s user base is older and predominantly male (68%), with 44% of the 187 million daily active users aged 30 to 49. These users spend around three and a half minutes per session on Twitter, which suggests user habits are centred around short bursts of content consumption. 

Twitter’s feature set for marketers is more streamlined compared to Instagram. It is generally used to republish and share content to increase visibility, while also doubling as a primary channel for conducting customer service and supporting online reputation management (ORM). 

Twitter is still versatile, though, in that audiences are receptive to a wide range of tweets. You could post a link to a company update in the morning and then follow up in the afternoon with news about product discounts, offers and sales. Think of Twitter as a one-stop shop for brand building. It is about nurturing relationships with customers and getting “into the conversation” around trending topics.


LinkedIn is quite unique in the social media space in that it caters primarily for a business-focused audience, which obviously makes it a great channel for B2B content. There are currently around 738 million people on the platform and its user base is skewed towards high earners, with the largest age group being between 46 and 55.

In the absence of conferences and live events, LinkedIn is currently a particularly valuable tool for engaging with new clients and generating new leads. In fact, LinkedIn themselves say the platform is the best social media site for lead generation, while doubling as the top destination for finding and sharing professional content. 

If you have recently crafted a whitepaper or press release then LinkedIn is a great place to post it. Many of the 690 million professionals on the platform are also looking for articles and blogs that can address issues and solve pain points. It is a truly global platform, with 70% of users residing outside of the US.


The new kid on the block, TikTok’s popularity has skyrocketed during the last two years. Its very young user base (27.5% are under 24) now spend more than 21 hours on the platform each month. Back in 2019, that figure stood at just 12.8 hours.

Marketing on TikTok is all about eye-catching content. You need to come up with short, 15-second videos that really capture the imagination of users and have the potential to go viral. A few new ad products will give you a helping hand. You can use in-feed ads, branded hashtags, top view ads, branded effects and branded takeovers to engage audiences.

Like Instagram, TikTok is popular with influencers. If you want to use influencer marketing to increase the relevancy of campaigns and connect with a wider market, then you could consider entering into strategic partnerships.

Pinterest and Snapchat 

Two other platforms to consider when crafting a social media strategy are Pinterest and Snapchat. Around 60% of Pinterest’s 450 million-strong active user base are female, so this could be used to push images and products that are tailored for that demographic. Snapchat’s popularity has declined recently but you could still tap into innovative formats like sponsored artificial reality (AR) lenses to reach audiences. 

With so many different platforms, it is crucial that you create a strategy for social media that provides you with a framework from which to plan, create, measure, report and improve your campaigns over time. Documenting a strategy will improve the overall quality of your output and ensure that you are using social media to achieve key business goals.

If you need assistance with any aspect of social media marketing, a reputable agency can help. Contact us today and we will talk through the content marketing, SEO and social media services that can work for your business.

Social media

Have a question?