THERE'S no doubt that social media is a vital tool for businesses of all sizes, for both B2C and B2B. It's an inexpensive marketing option and delivers a great return on investment if you get your approach right. However, like all marketing activities, it works best when you understand your target audience and make your marketing messages specific and relevant to that demographic. Once you know who you want to market to, the next hurdle (pardon the pun) is to reach them. To assist with locating your ideal audience, we take our traditional, annual review of UK social media statistics for 2019:
Facebook UK Users
Facebook remains one of the most prominent social media platforms. Whether you want to reach a local audience or a worldwide one, the site delivers flexibility, targeting and opportunity.
* In the UK more than 44 million users were registered with Facebook as of December 2019.
* 71 per cent of UK adults can be reached through the platform, which, if you are thinking of using Facebook Ads, can be highly targeted.
* The mix of users is quite even between men (48 per cent) and women (52 per cent).
* Video is the most engaging type of content on Facebook which means you are likely to get more views and shares. Indeed, Facebook videos receive 135 per cent more organic traffic than images
* In the 18 to 54 age group, between 85 per cent and 92 per cent of the population engage with the platform across all income groups.
Twitter UK Users
Unlike Facebook, Twitter can be a little less forthcoming about their user numbers and demographics. While a lot fewer people in the UK use the platform, it still gives businesses a significant reach.
* Twitter's figures for users has remained fairly constant at 13.7 million in the UK.
* More males (60 per cent) tend to use the platform compared to females (40 per cent).
* 80 per cent of Twitter users access the platform on a mobile device and 74 per cent of users say they engage with it to get news stories.
* While it's often seen as a platform for older people, 62 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds and 69 per cent of 25 to 34-year-olds have an account.
* According to the platform itself, users are six times more likely to retweet a video than a post with just an image.
Instagram UK Users
Instagram has continued to grow in popularity and still remains skewed towards a much younger audience. Being purchased by Facebook gave a huge boost to user numbers.
* In the UK, there are 24 million Instagram users.
* The platform appeals more to 18 to 34-year-olds who make up nearly 60 per cent of users. The split is 54 per cent female, 46 per cent male.
* Regular Instagram users spend an average of 53 minutes a day on the platform.
* 20 per cent of users will engage with a business profile on Instagram on a daily basis and more than 80 per cent of users follow at least one business on the site.
Google My Business
Whilst not a social platform per se, we do strongly advise you review the Google My Business area and make regular posts. Whilst they are only temporary, the posts generate decent and relevant traffic. Should you have products rather than services we also strongly recommend you add "Products" to your My Business account. Unfortunately, we are not able to locate meaningful stats about My Business, but once you start using it, you will receive regular stat updates from Google on the number of views and clicks through to your site. You can of course, also track referrals in Google Analytics.
LinkedIn UK Users
If you run a business or are a professional, the chances are you will have a LinkedIn account and the company indicate they have some 20 million users in the UK.
* The split between users in the UK is 60 per cent male and 40 per cent female and there has been an increase in engagement on the site in the last few years.
* 40 per cent of active users use the site every day and some 61 million users worldwide are thought to be 'senior-level influencers'.
* Profiles on LinkedIn that have a photo are 12 times more likely to be viewed and get 36 times more messages.
* LinkedIn drives much more B2B traffic to blogs and websites than any other social media platform.
UK Social Media Statistics For 2019
Due to obvious space constraints we have focused on the larger social sites for this column, visit the blog on thelasthurdle.co.uk to view the stats for YouTube, Snapchat and Pinterest.
Businesses have quite a challenge choosing among the wide range of different social platforms available. If resources and time are tight it's important to find the social media sites that help you reach your audience and engage with them in an effective way that delivers a strong return on investment. We hope the information we've provided will help you make an informed decision.