Instagram vs Facebook vs Twitter vs Snapchat: Which is Better for Business Marketing
August 13, 2017 Rajat Tyagi
To build a strong position in the market, an organisation should showcase their best, and stay regularly connected via the four most renowned social media platforms for better business marketing. In today’s world, social media is the primary platform for digital marketing. Certain studies claim that by 2020, social networking is going to bring 2.95 billion users, a third of earth’s entire population under one roof. More people are expected to use social media platforms to market products or services, increase visibility of the business or brand, enhance exposure and create a better engagement rate. But, the question is which one among all these four platforms, better suits your needs and enables successful business marketing.
It has been noticed that an ideal digital marketing agency will always prefer to choose and focus on major social media platforms depending on their client’s brand values, business offerings and target audience. Major reasons for selecting each platform for different businesses are clearly mentioned in this analytical report.
What and How it is good for Business Marketing?
Instagram is dedicated mainly to pictures while Facebook is inclined towards recent updates. Facebook encourages users to share fun elements, whereas Twitter is more about sharing serious elements such as news. On the other hand, if you were to compare Twitter and Snapchat, though a tweet lasts forever, its age lasts only a few seconds before its replaced by another tweet; while a snap disappears within 24 hours.
When we assess both Snapchat and Instagram, Instagram users share their photos on their wall while Snapchat allows users to send videos and pictures to friends. If you compare Instagram & Twitter, the primary importance is given to photos in Instagram while in Twitter it is given to text and hashtags. While assessing Facebook or Snapchat, the former encourages both public and private postings while the latter is exclusively for private chats with friends.
Which is More Beneficial for Business Marketing?
How Instagram is Beneficial for Business Marketing?
This photo-sharing app is extremely effective for all forms of businesses. It has been noticed that per-follower engagement rate of top brands’ Instagram posts is generally 4.21%. This proves Instagram delivers 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook and 120 times more engagement per follower than Twitter.
How Facebook is Beneficial for Business Marketing?
Facebook, supposedly the most popular social media platform, can be truly effective for business marketing if the posts add value to the community. At least 70% of posts should cater to business tips, recent events, local news, or survey questions.
It is essential as Facebook can help enhance your company’s exposure manifold by sharing fun elements and important updates with both current and potential followers. Research shows posts done between the time frame of 1 – 4 p.m. get the maximum clicks and shares.
How Twitter is Beneficial for Business Marketing?
Twitter is a brilliant platform that helps promote your product or services with just a small tweet. The best part about this platform is it is absolutely free, unless you hire an SMO expert for handling your social media account and for Twitter marketing.
How Snapchat is Beneficial for Business Marketing?
Snapchat is one of the fastest-growing social networks, with over 100 million daily active users and 400 million snaps per day.
Stats revealed 71% of Snapchat users are within the age group of 18 to 34. Although target audience may not fall in this category, you should use Snapchat for business marketing as it is effective in forming global marketing strategies.
Different facts and figures on Facebook & Instagram recently report that the engagement rate of Instagram is higher than Facebook. A similar picture is noticed in Twitter vs Instagram 2017 report. In business marketing, recent event updates are essential and both Facebook and Twitter offer various features, suiting the purpose.
When reviewing the Facebook & Twitter context, tweets encourage businesses to innovate and show the important facets of news to an audience but Facebook provides ample of space and bandwidth to give detailed analysis of each event.
The focus area of a business should be the target audience, as Twitter can help you reach a wider audience in one go, while with Snapchat you can reach one person at a time. If you compare popularity between Instagram and Snapchat, Snapchat may be lagging behind but it’s stories and live video features can create a higher engagement and recall rate. On the other hand, Instagram helps a business add multiple photos to one post. If you compare Snapchat and Facebook, the post of Facebook adds value to the community more quickly while Snapchat adds value among friends and followers.
Unique Features of these Social Media Platforms for Business Marketing
Unique Features of Instagram Helpful for Business Marketing
There are a number of new features marketed by Instagram recently. Some are discussed below:
Instagram Shop fronts - Instagram profile bio gives the opportunity to add a URL of the website, which can also be capitalized to make it more prominent. Earlier, this was the only call to action (CTA) of any Instagram profile.
Instagram Ads – With the intention of increasing views, engagement, traffic flow and high conversion rate, Instagram has introduced the ad facility through Facebook Ad Manager.
Instagram Analytics – Though Instagram doesn’t have in-built analytics, it can offer a detailed analysis with the support of third-party services like Sprout Social or Simply Measured.
Geofilters- Instagram has introduced a unique feature “Geofilter”, where users can easily share their current location, without specifying their explicit geographical location. Currently, this is available in selected places. However, it’s a brilliant tool for business marketing.
Unique Features of Facebook helpful for Business Marketing
Facebook has many unique features that are rarely available in other social media platforms. Some of these features are:
- Facebook Cards
- Real-time Facebook Comment
- Spherical Video
- Pages to Watch
- Facebook’s new Share Sheet
- Liberal ad exchange
- Invite Email Contacts
- Detailed Analytics
- Apps Analytics
- Facebook Messenger for Business
It is hard to distinguish or exclude any feature from this list as most of them play significant roles in business marketing.
Facebook Cards – It is a unique marketing tool designed by Facebook with partnership with Moo.com, a printing service, to print them on 16 pt stock paper. It looks similar to the profile and includes cover photos, profile pictures, and contact details.
Pages to Watch – This feature is basically to watch and keep a track of the competitors’ pages. Currently, it monitors 5 competitor pages and helps view the number of new likes on a weekly basis.
Invite Email Contacts – In the ‘Admin’ panel under the ‘Build Audience’ tab, Facebook has the option to invite email contacts to like the business page. This can be done by many email providers as well as through Mailchimp, Constant Contact, iCloud, etc. The limit count set for inviting contacts is 5,000.
Liberal ad exchange – It helps Facebook and app developers earn profit by displaying ads on mobiles.
Apps Analytics – This is a unique tool that helps app developers understand the way people are using their app.
Facebook Messenger for Business – This new feature has been added on messenger. Here, consumers can ask questions about anything while shopping or send notifications to the seller in case the product is defective.As per latest update, Facebook Messenger supports sharing 360-degree photos and HD videos of 1080p or more for both iOS and Android users. This update is a great opportunity for video makers. Without video SEO, your videos will not rank on any video search engine platform like YouTube or any other search engines such as Google or Bing. Higher rankings of your videos will help people find your content easily and the chances will be high that your video gets viral or shared among people.
Detailed Analytics – Under ‘Posts’ tab, Facebook gives the option to get the detailed analytics of audience, posts, engagement, etc. This helps the brand evaluate its success rate and bring necessary changes to the posts.
Unique Features of Twitter Helpful for Business Marketing
Twitter has unique features to help a business in the long run. Those unique features are:
‘Go Live’ Button for Periscope
Twitter acquired Periscope, which allows to see a “go live” button while composing tweets. This button enables users to broadcast directly through Twitter. It helps expand content type marketing. Users can use live streaming to compile and publish long-form thoughts and responses.
Native GIF Search
You can even share your thoughts with the help of GIFs. In 2015, people shared more than 100 million GIFs on Twitter.
Twitter has come up with uncropped photo update and a new view for multi-photo displays. This makes Twitter an engaging and more visually appealing platform.
Twitter has taken some serious steps to respond to harassment and threats through a series of features and services so that the platform is secure to use. These features are:
- Bold functionality for blocking, muting, and reporting abuse
- Launched Twitter Safety Center and the Trust and Safety Council
- Clear definition of abusive behaviour in Twitter’s terms of service
Unique Features of Snapchat Helpful for Business Marketing
‘Self-destruct’ of shared elements within few seconds after viewing them, is the most unique feature of Snapchat. There are many more features that are exclusively available in Snapchat like:
Scores – A score will be rewarded under Snapcode in profile screen after equating all the number of snaps sent and received, stories posted, and other activities done. A friend’s score can be viewed when a friend on your contact list, posts in story feed, or chat area.
Snapcode – Snapcodes are scannable codes. This can be used to add new friends. Once you click on the ghost icon on the top of camera screen, you will find Snapcode in your profile screen.
Snapstreak – It is another unique feature of Snapchat that shows different emojis next to Snapchat names in the chat screen. This denotes you have snapped with your friend within 24 hours for more than one consecutive day.
Lenses – It helps add adding real-time special effects and sounds to snaps with lenses.
Filters – Snapchat is known for its fun elements. It allows jazzing up the snaps by adding a filter on it.
As far as unique features are concerned, each of these four platforms are well versed with their respective features ideal for business. If you review the pros and cons of Instagram & Facebook for business, you will find Facebook has Liberal Ad exchange feature and Instagram Ads utilize Facebook Ad Manager to offer an ad service.
If we compare Facebook and Twitter, Facebook uses Facebook Live streaming feature whereas Twitter acquires Periscope which allows adding a ‘go live’ button. The most significant feature that can be noticed between Twitter and Snapchat is Snapchat has the ‘self-destruct’ feature for security and Twitter has anti-harassment feature. Snapcodes are scannable codes, which can be used to view but no such feature is available in Facebook; this is the difference you will find while analysing Facebook and Snapchat.
However, while considering Snapchat and Instagram, you will find a unique feature named ‘Geofilter’ in Instagram to share current location without specifying their explicit geographical location, but no such feature is available in Snapchat. One interesting photo related feature has been introduced in Twitter wherein businesses can provide uncropped photo update and a new view for multi-photo display allowing businesses to showcase an event or a new launch more explicitly. Though Instagram is mainly for photos, in Instagram and Twitter, this unique feature is noticed in Twitter only.
What are the Top Strategies to be followed for an Effective Business Marketing?
While discussing the business marketing plan, you may confuse social media services with the most effective Search Engine Optimization services. This is because to build a successful business marketing plot, the strategy adopted always remains the same. However, it may vary from one platform to another.
Top Strategies for Instagram Business Marketing
- Focus on the unique qualities of your brand’s audience
- Tell a story with your caption
- Run some contests
- Collaborate with popular influencers or micro-influencers of your niche
- Take the support of the advertising platform
As per Stats conducted across 475+ global campaigns, ad recall from sponsored posts on Instagram is 2.9x higher than Nielsen’s norms for online advertising. These strategies must be implemented to achieve the ultimate goal. All businesses target to grab the attention of their Instagram users through their posts/ images. Users should be able to recognize your images instantly and engage in liking and commenting. This will in turn help:
- Increase traffic flow
- Improve sales graph
- Enhance brand awareness
- Increase branded hashtag mentions
Top Strategies for Facebook Business Marketing
As per Facebook norms, anyone over the age of 13 with a valid email address can create an account in Facebook. This is the most vital factor of Facebook. Any business marketing strategy should be youth-centric. Facebook is now even more popular amongmiddle-aged adults too.
A proper sketched strategy should be implemented to gain success through Facebook marketing. An ideal Facebook marketing strategy should include the following steps:
Step 1: Use a profile pic that is recognizable.
Step 2: Launch and maintain a proper company account.
Step 3: Fill the “About Us” section.
Step 4: Maintain a consistency among cover photo, posts and all profile CTAs.
Step 5: Tailor your organic posts.
Step 6: Set specific timings of postings. Don’t post too often.
Step 7: Make proper usage of multimedia posts.
Step 8: Do respond instantly.
Step 9: Use insights to analyze the page performance.
Step 10: Utilize the paid version to amplify the reach of the posts.
Top Strategies for Twitter Business Marketing
It is simple to map and set a proper strategy for business marketing. It includes:
Say ‘Thank you’. 1 out of 4 whom you thank will follow back.
Search for influencers & micro influencers and interact with them on a regular basis to carry micro influencer marketing
- Involve more people to do Twitter marketing
- Optimize Twitter bio
- Track mentions
- Provide special offers to followers
- Use images, videos, gifs, etc.
- Integrate Twitter with other marketing efforts
- Tweet regularly, retweet, favourite tweets
- Follow trends/hashtags
- Use promoted tweets
- Use Twitter analytics
Top Strategies for Snapchat Business Marketing
Snapchat is perfect for real-time social media marketing, so the strategies to be implemented for it should be critical and valuable.
- Provide access to live events
- Deliver personalised content
- Take people behind the curtain
- Conduct contests
- Interact with influencers
Strategies adopted for each of the four social media platforms is distinctive and none can be replicated by the other. One of them may be better for a short engaging post, while the other is necessary to engage your audience in a fun manner. Today, all the platforms are using distinctive features to maintain their followers, and it should come as no surprise, features of each other are now copied and used. For example, Snaps or stories, which was the brainchild of Snapchat has its own version in Instagram. Similarly, both Twitter and Facebook allow posing multiple images in one post.
When it comes to collaborating with influencers or micro-influencers of your niche, all four platforms are equally important. Hashtags, sharing leads, effective CTAs, are necessary on all four platforms for better engagement.
What are the Challenges faced in these Social Platforms?
Challenges Faced in Instagram
Some of the greatest challenges are:
- To build or to retain the position of Instagram as the most favourite social media platform,
- To search where your followers are hanging out, then build a presence over there,
- To interact with your brand and create a stronger community,
- To convert the users/ followers to dedicated blog readers or web design clients.
Challenges Faced in Facebook
The greatest challenge you may face while conducting Facebook marketing is mapping topics of the post. Choosing some boring facts or posting too many posts can bring an adverse effect on the image of your brand.
One more challenge is to meet the expectation of the consumers in terms of response time. It has been researched that almost 42% of consumers launch a complaint as they expect a response to their query within 60 minutes.
Challenges Faced in Twitter
In spite of adopting proper marketing strategy, businesses may still face various challenges, such as:
- Twitter has limited operating experience. It also involves certain complexities of laws and regulations regarding privacy and security.
- It has been noticed by Twitter that it often become the subject of bad press, so it may affect the reputation of the brand.
- It is a race to stay ahead of user growth plus.
- It involves a slow growth.
Challenges Faced in Snapchat
It is tricky to cope up with this fun messaging app, that is the reason brands face various challenges while conducting business marketing.
- It is difficult for users to find whether the snap has sound or not.
- The look and feel of the platform is little unprofessional.
- It is hard to identify what and when to share.
- Platform many not be apt to your followers.
Both social media platforms and the businesses using social media, are struggling to retain their market positions. The major challenge an entity faces while trying to master these sites is mapping topics or limited characters and building a presence. If you look at the challenges, it ranges from meeting response time, slow growth and when to share, respectively. In case of look and feel, Snapchat is considered less professional as compared to Facebook and Instagram because 60% of its user base is between 18-34 years and hence it is designed accordingly. If you consider the audio in posts, a user usually finds it difficult to know if a snap come with audio or not, but in both Twitter and Instagram, user will get an option of turning the audio on and off with a video post.
What are the Cost of Ads in these social media Platforms?
Cost of Instagram Ads
It is a brilliant idea to complement the Instagram feed contents with adverts on images, videos, carousal and stories. Instagram ads offer 2.5 times more clicks than ads on other social media sites.
Due to impressive targeting capabilities and higher CTR, the cost of ads on Instagram is little higher than the cost of Twitter and Facebook advertising. The estimated CPM of Instagram is $13. But, it is expected to reduce as more and more companies are utilizing the platform. It has been noticed that Instagram can provide:
- 97% lift in ad recall
- 16-point average ad recall lift
- 7x higher Nielsen ad recall vs. other study data
Cost of Facebook Ads
The advertisement cost of Facebook ranges from $0.16 to $1.00+ on every click. It varies from industry to industry based on the size of audience and Ad quality.
The cost is not too high that is the main reason why 1.5 million businesses spend money on Facebook ads and 75% of brands promote their Facebook posts. In 2014, it has been seen that businesses paid 122% more per ad on Facebook than they committed on 2013.
Cost of Twitter Ads
Twitter has 3 types of advertising options –
- Promoted tweets,
- Promoted accounts, and
- Promoted trends.
The cost of promoted tweets and promoted accounts range between $.50 – $4.00 per engagement and promoted trends cost around $200,000 per day.
Clicking, replying, retweeting or favouriting your paid tweets and ads cost between $.50 – $2.00, depending on your targeting. For local campaigns, this figure is $1.35 per engagement.
Cost of Snapchat Ads
Snapchat is a bit costlier platform as compared to other social media platforms. The swipe-up rate for Snapchat ads is 5 times more than the average CTR for other platforms. The cost for Snap ad campaigns start from $10,000/month.
Snapchat sponsored lenses cost is $450,000 per day Sunday to Thursday, $500,000 for Fridays and Saturdays, and $700,000 plus for holidays or special events.
It is important to compare costs among these four platforms before investing money for promoting posts. While comparing Instagram and Facebook, Instagram is costlier than Facebook, though Instagram has started using Facebook Ad Manager to facilitate PPC ad services for businesses.
Twitter ads are cheaper than Instagram ads. Both charge as per engagement ratio but the involvement rate is higher in Facebook. The unique feature of cost variation in Snapchat on different dates can be helpful while planning your ad placements in comparison to those on Twitter or Instagram. It can be said that as of today Facebook is the cheapest platform while Snapchat is the costliest among all.
MAU (Monthly Active Users)
- Instagram: 600 million
- Facebook: 1.79 billion
- Twitter: 317 million
- Snapchat: 150 million
DAU (Daily Active Users)
- Instagram: 300 million
- Facebook: 1.18 billion
- Twitter: 100 million
- Snapchat: 60 million
2016 MAU Growth
- Instagram: +50.0%
- Facebook: +15.7%
- Twitter: +3.2%
- Snapchat: +67.2%
If you look for Instagram and Facebook users then you will find a huge difference. On monthly basis, where Facebook receives more than one billion active users, Instagram receives only 600 million. On the other hand, figures for Facebook and Twitter users vary even more. As compared to a billion users of Facebook per day, Twitter only has 100 million active users on a daily basis. If you compare the competitors, Instagram and Snapchat users, Snapchat is gaining popularity and the well-established Instagram continues to draw 5 times more traffic daily than Snapchat.
2017 Projected Ad Revenue
- Instagram: $5.3 billion
- Facebook: $10.0 billion
- Twitter: $2.54 billion
- Snapchat: $935 million
2017 Projected Ad Revenue Growth
- Instagram: +65%
- Facebook: +13%
- Twitter: +32%
- Snapchat: +155%
In Terms of Female users and Male Users
- Instagram – 40:60
- Facebook – 55:45
- Twitter – 60:40
- Snapchat – 80:20
Some important facts about these platforms that may interest you:
Key Facts about Instagram:
On an average, users spend at least 5 minutes per day on Instagram and Facebook. A study conducted by Simply Measured in 2013 found 59% of the world’s top brands are now active on Instagram.
In 2014 reader survey has noticed that 50% of respondents favoured Instagram over other social platforms.
Key Facts about Facebook:
Research studies has shown that visual content usage in Facebook campaigns can generate 65% more engagement within a month.
20% of Facebook posts are based on promoting other business events, tagging others, or sharing others’ content.
10% of posts are promotional that display discounts or sales.
Key Facts about Twitter:
HubSpot study noticed that tweets with images resulted in 18% more CTR and 150% more retweets.
According to a reader survey, it has been noticed that Twitter ranks second in popularity with 21% over other social platforms.
Key Facts about Snapchat:
Snapchat stories last only for 24 hours. These are actually a thread of snaps used to create a video narrative. It has been noticed that there are over 1 billion views of Snapchat stories each day and almost 60% viewers skip ads in Snapchat.
The fact is that you cannot deny the specific contributions of each social media platforms to excel in business marketing.
If you look into the bigger picture, you will be able to find that:
- Twitter has the largest penetration potentiality as it is spreading slowly and steadily.
- Facebook has the largest opportunity to communicate with consumers in an effortless way.
- Instagram is a better platform to use hashtags and post pictures.
- Snapchat apparently seems to be a non-professional platform but has the maximum capacity to grab the attention of users in a funny way.
In a nutshell, it can be revealed that you can choose any of these platforms but make sure that your brand’s postings maintain the thumb rules, such as:
- Maintain consistency for posting content.
- Maintain the right frequency. Do not bombard your followers with too many posts.
- Follow the timezone of your followers while posting.
Must Read: Must Read: Digital Marketing 101 : Building a Digital Marketing Plan in 2020
Which is better Twitter or Instagram?
Instagram is focused on visual appeal while Twitter is centred around texting, copy, stories, and conversation. Instagram is currently the most popular social media channel around with a billion monthly active users. Instagram is better for brands with a visual appeal such as fashion or luxury, while twitter is great for having direct conversations and updating frequently such as news websites.
What is the difference between Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter?
Snapchat is aimed at younger audiences and content only lives for a day. Instagram is designed for sharing images and videos, while twitter is focused on text posts and polls. Instagram and Twitter can be either public or private, while snapchat is for mostly private conversations between friends.
What’s more popular Instagram or Snapchat?
Instagram has overtaken snapchat in terms of popularity. It is easier to use, offers short-lived as well as long-lived content, and is more engaging and smoother.
Which is better for business twitter or Instagram?
Instagram will allow you to create great content quickly and easily, while Twitter is great for engaging with your audience and even providing Customer Support. Instagram has a larger audience and higher engagement. Both offer paid forms of advertisement as well, but we recommend going with the platform that works for your business, audience, and objectives.
Is Facebook more popular than Instagram?
While Facebook still has more users than Instagram, its popularity is dipping. Instagram is much faster than parent Facebook and advertisers see 4 times as much engagement on Instagram than they do on Facebook.
Is Twitter better than Facebook?
While Facebook has a wider reach than Twitter, higher engagement, and more targeted advertising opportunities, the short answer is, it depends. Tweets encourage businesses to innovate and show the important facets of news to an audience but Facebook provides ample of space and bandwidth to give a detailed analysis of each. The demographics of each platform’s audience vary as well – we suggest making brand decisions based on your objectives.