Facebook remains the most-used social platform by marketers, as it is by consumers. However, much as with its declining popularity among youth, its appeal may be slightly waning among marketers, according to results from Social Media Examiner’s latest annual Social Media Marketing Industry Report.
Indeed, the share of marketers saying that Facebook is their most important platform has declined, while the percentage who report that they will be decreasing their organic marketing on the platform has risen. These and more highlights from the survey of almost 3,000 marketers around the world are highlighted below.
Before proceeding, it’s important to point out that the majority (64%) of respondents are from small businesses (1-10 employees), so this report does not necessarily reflect the activities of larger enterprise businesses.
Most Popular Platforms
Not surprisingly, Facebook continues to be the most commonly-used social platform by the survey’s respondents, with 9 in 10 saying they use it. It’s rated particularly well for contribution to sales and for generating traffic. It’s neck-and-neck with LinkedIn in terms of the top platform for lead generation and with Instagram for developing loyal fans, while taking a back seat to Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter for exposure.
Following Facebook in terms of respondents’ usage is Instagram (79%), LinkedIn (61%) and YouTube (52%), with Twitter (43%) further back. TikTok remains relatively sparingly used, though its 18% adoption rate in this year’s survey is double that of last year (9%).
Looking at how platform usage differs among B2C and B2B marketers, LinkedIn is – as expected – more popular with B2B marketers than B2C marketers (81% vs. 53%). B2C marketers are more apt to use Facebook (94% vs. 85%) and Instagram (85% vs. 74%), though the gap is not that large.
This year 55% of B2C marketers consider Facebook to be their most important platform (of 6 options provided), down from 63% last year, with Instagram in the #2 spot at 27% share. Among B2B marketers, LinkedIn (40%) has overtaken Facebook (32%) as the favorite.
Across all respondents, Facebook is the most important for fewer than half (47%) this year, after being tops for 54% last year and two-thirds (67%) back in 2018.
Platform Usage Trends
Although Facebook continues to be the most important social media platform among marketers, this year 13% of marketers say they’ll be decreasing their organic marketing on the platform, the largest share for any platform. (That result is also due to Facebook being the most widely used.)
Still, there’s not as much appetite among marketers to increase their level of activity on Facebook as in years past. Some 41% said they would do so, down from 47% last year.
Instagram is the platform for which the largest proportion of marketers will increase their organic efforts, with 61% planning to do so on the platform over the next year. Some 57% plan to increase their organic activity on YouTube, 54% on LinkedIn, and 37% on TikTok (up from 21% last year).
Similar trends emerge in social advertising attitudes. Seven in 10 respondents are using Facebook ads either often (31%) or sometimes (39%), making it easily the most widespread ad platform. However, that adoption is down from three-quarters who were using Facebook ads last year.
And while half (51%) named Facebook ads their most important form of paid social for their businesses, that’s also a decline, from 61% who said the same last year.
For more, check out the study here.
About the Data: The results are based on a global survey of 2,897 marketers, the majority (64%) of whom work for small businesses (1-10 employees). Close to two-thirds (63%) focus primarily on B2C marketing and half (50%) are based in the US.