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Most Relevant Social Networks For Your Business In 2016

Social media done the right way is going to strengthen your business’ online presence, increase brand advocacy, improve your search ranking and connect you to your customers on a personal level. Too many brands waste valuable time and money by communicating on platforms that are not relevant in the South African market when social media has so many great opportunities. With half the year gone, let’s look at the most relevant social networks for your business in 2016.


Locally, Facebook has grown by 8% (from 2015 to 2016), from 12-million to 13-million. It is by far the most powerful and popular social media platform in South Africa and the rest of the world. Facebook appears to be in constant transition as it is often improving its features. The recent inclusion of 360 video (video that gives a 360 degree perspective) can potentially take marketing to brand new levels. Its paid media capabilities can be segmented in an extremely detailed manner – effective for audience targeting.  Facebook Insights is exceptional for rendering post and page performance. Facebook is the heaviest hitter when it comes to 2016’s most relevant social networks for your business.


Locally, Twitter has grown by 12%, from 6.6-million to 7.4-million users (from 2015 to 2016). Twitter, is another excellent platform to communicate with your audience and put your brand out there. You can get valuable audience feedback as it has polling features and you can also go the paid media route to connect with your audience. In addition, the short lifespan of a tweet enables you to tweet frequently without running the risk of your content coming across as spammy.


Locally, YouTube has experienced a 15% rise from 7.2-million to 8.28-million users (from 2015 to 2016). YouTube is excellent for generating exposure to your brand. A well-packaged video for your business or product that is housed on YouTube has incredible marketing potential. Utilising YouTube will also increase the video’s SEO properties as Google will perceive the video as more authoritative.


Locally, Instagram saw a whopping 113% growth (from 2015 to 2016) as its users jumped from 1.1- million to 2.68-million. Its visual-centricity makes it an incredible platform for showcasing your, business, platform, offering, etc. Instagram tends to fare better than most platforms for engagement when it comes to branded content. It also enables you to share your content to other platforms which is a great time-saving feature.


LinkedIn has been a relevant social media platform for businesses for a long time – after all, it is a network for professionals, business-people and employers/employees. You will find less fake profiles, nobody really uses it for entertainment and articles are more accurate. It is also the perfect platform for targeting a B2B audience (it is also great for B2C tactics). It has a sizeable presence in South Africa and essential for businesses to connect with their intended audience.


Snapchat has been a significant player in the social media realm for a few years, on the international front. However, it has gained immense traction in recent times – it surpassed Twitter in terms of active users worldwide (150 million). Locally, there are concerns around implementing a Snapchat strategy for marketing purposes, purely because Snapchat is more about user generated content. In South Africa, brands are sceptical to utilise it because it lacks a strong following and it is also very data-heavy. However, as connectivity improves, the Snapchat trend will pick up steam in South Africa.

Statistics mentioned, have been pulled from the South African Social Media Landscape 2016: Executive Summary by World Wide Worx.

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Seagyn Davis

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