15 Advantages and disadvantages of social networks
Social networks are spaces and platforms in which a new connection with people proliferates.
Likewise, they help to enhance and improve information exchange techniques between people, companies and other social or commercial agents .
When we talk about social networks, we immediately think of the platforms that are trending.
Currently we can talk about Instagram, TikTok, Twitter or Facebook as the main social networks.
However, as time progresses, new networks may emerge or some may decline to the point of being obsolete.
If we think about the decline and disuse of social networks, it is clear that different advantages and disadvantages are addressed in their structure, if not, how else could the popularity of each social platform be explained?
At least, in the commercial and Marketing field , social networks are a great tool and channel to create sales strategies and projects.
In this sense, MKT professionals try to stay current and updated in the face of any developments within social platforms.
Therefore, it is easy to recognize the advantages and disadvantages of social networks, since you want to know their characteristics, behaviors with their audience, similarities and differences.
If you want to know more information about social networks, as well as their main strengths and disadvantages, we recommend you continue reading the article we have for you.
The impact of social networks
Social networks have three fairly clear functions: facilitating the exchange of information, allowing better communication and promoting the creation of communities.
The impact of these elements lies in the fact that currently we no longer talk about the media, but rather about the media . This is because the traditional scheme (of a media) was configured towards a changing, interactive and dynamic process.
The above translates into the integration of broadcast media with traditional media, such as virtual spaces, in which social networks stand out.
The most used social networks in the world
According to one of the latest studies carried out by the companies We are social and HootSuite in 2021 , the most used social networks in the world are:
Likewise, there is a whole discourse around two other platforms: WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. Some people consider these two channels as social networks. However, there are also those who claim that they are merely instant messaging services.
Advantages of social networks
Next, we will present 10 great advantages of social networks that proliferate in the commercial, marketing and business fields.
1. They serve as a dissemination channel for the company's content. This refers to the web traffic and online presence that a business can obtain if the channels (social networks) are used appropriately.
2. It is possible to associate a blog. If the company has a blog where it publishes relevant content and material , social networks are a great boost to enhance the approach to quality content. This translates into notoriety and improved engagement on social networks.
3. Promotes collaboration and communication between professionals. This means that social platforms facilitate coexistence between companies and professionals, which helps to enhance collaborations between them. Likewise, they allow obtaining timely feedback to improve techniques and strategies.
4. Improve the channel and customer service. Social platforms can improve the practices carried out to offer the necessary customer service, in order to build customer loyalty through listening, attention and resolution of their problems. Thanks to social networks it is easier to manage comments, questions, criticisms and suggestions.
5. Raise brand visibility. As it could not be otherwise, the brand expands its image by breaking certain barriers that prevented it from reaching other audiences. In other words, geographical barriers are broken down to reach new customers and users. The brand that uses social networks wisely will be a recognizable brand.
6. Contact with potential clients and customer loyalty. Customer acquisition and loyalty are activities that can be achieved through adequate use of social networks. Likewise, we must not forget that this is also achieved through the use of strategies, techniques and other practices.
7. Real-time measurement of marketing actions. Each social network has its own operations panel to manage and interpret action data . Depending on the platform, the measurement will be simple or slightly complicated. However, nowadays monitoring tools are usually designed so that they can be interpreted without much effort.
8. It is possible to analyze the competition. It is always important to follow the steps of the competition , in order to be able to land new ideas or strategies to take advantage of the disadvantages of rivals. This action is very useful when making decisions and planning new strategies.
9. Improve the company's online reputation. Having a good image online is important, as it generates trust and security among potential clients. Therefore, it is vital to invest in creating a personal brand on social networks . Naturally, reputation management will come, which implies having a closer relationship with clients.
10. Offer information, knowledge and content. In addition to associating a blog, social networks can encourage the consumption of interesting content for users.
Disadvantages of social networks
Most of the disadvantages tend to be somewhat subjective, since they depend almost entirely on the type of company and its needs.
However, there are some general considerations that can represent a disadvantage for companies, which can be summarized in two major drawbacks:
1. Addiction : Social networks can generate addiction and dependency in users. You can lose control of the time spent on social networks and neglect other important activities such as work, study or rest. Social media addiction can also negatively affect physical and mental health.
2. Disinformation : Social networks can spread false, misleading or manipulated information for malicious or commercial purposes. You can make the mistake of believing or sharing information without verifying its veracity or reliability. Misinformation on social media can also generate confusion, fear or polarization.
3. Cyberbullying : Social networks can be a scenario for cyberbullying or digital harassment among users. You can suffer or be subjected to insults, threats, humiliation or blackmail through social networks. Cyberbullying on social media can also cause psychological, emotional or legal harm.
4. Privacy : Social networks can violate the privacy and security of users. Users' personal or sensitive information may be accessed or stolen without their consent or knowledge. Privacy on social networks can also be affected by misuse or abuse of data by third parties.
5. Competition : Social networks can generate competition and comparison between users. You may feel pressure or anxiety to get more likes, comments or followers than other users. Competition on social networks can also affect self-esteem, confidence or personal satisfaction.
Advantages of each social network
Each social network has its own characteristics, functions and objectives that make it different from the others. Next, we are going to see some of the advantages of each of the main social networks
Facebook is the most popular and used social network in the world, with more than 2.8 billion monthly active users. Facebook allows you to create personal profiles or company and organization pages, publish and share multimedia content, send and receive messages, make video calls, create groups and events, participate in communities and advertise products or services.
Instagram is the social network most focused on visual content, with more than 1.2 billion monthly active users. Instagram allows you to create personal or business profiles, publish and share photos and videos, send and receive messages, make video calls, create stories and reels, follow hashtags and influencers, explore recommended content and advertise products or services.
LinkedIn is the most professionally oriented social network, with more than 740 million monthly active users. LinkedIn allows you to create personal or business profiles, publish and share relevant content, send and receive messages, make video calls, create groups and events, participate in debates and forums, search for and offer employment, training and business opportunities, and advertise products or services.
YouTube is the social network most specialized in audiovisual content, with more than 2.3 billion monthly active users. YouTube allows you to create personal or corporate channels, upload and share videos, send and receive messages, make video calls, create playlists and live broadcasts, follow channels and content creators, explore recommended content, and advertise products or services.
TikTok is the most innovative and viral social network of the moment, with more than 689 million monthly active users. TikTok allows you to create personal or business profiles, publish and share short videos with special effects, send and receive messages, make video calls, create duets and challenges, follow trends and celebrities, explore recommended content, and advertise products or services.
How to advertise on social networks
Social media advertising is a way to promote products, services, brands and ideas through digital platforms. Advertising on social networks has several advantages such as:
- Reach : Advertising on social networks allows you to reach a large number of people who use digital platforms daily. The target audience can be segmented according to their demographic, geographic, psychographic and behavioral characteristics.
- Cost : Advertising on social networks has a relatively low cost compared to other traditional media such as television, radio or the press. The budget can be adjusted according to the objectives and expected results.
- Measurement : Advertising on social networks allows you to measure the impact and performance of advertising campaigns. You can access data and indicators such as the number of impressions, clicks, conversions, interactions or sales generated by advertising.
- Interaction : Advertising on social networks allows you to generate interaction and engagement with the target audience. You can create a close and personalized relationship with customers and followers, as well as receive feedback and valuable information to improve the offer or service.
To advertise on social networks, you must follow some steps such as:
- Define the objectives : You must establish what you want to achieve with advertising on social networks. The objectives may be to increase brand recognition, generate traffic to the website, capture leads or potential customers, increase sales or build customer loyalty.
- Choosing the platforms : The most appropriate social networks for advertising must be selected according to the type of product or service offered, the profile of the target audience that is sought to be reached and the format of the content that is to be displayed.
Written by Moises Hamui Abadi : I am an entrepreneur, founding partner of Viceversa and SoyMacho. After leading several digital businesses and advising several other businesses; I decided to form MHA Consulting, a digital marketing consultancy dedicated to growing and enhancing digital businesses in more than 7 countries and generating more than 1,500 million pesos.
Schedule a call with MHA and let us advise you so you can achieve your sales goals.