Digiday Research: Facebook is the only social platform valuable to a majority of the brands and publishers using it
When it comes to social platforms, there’s the Facebook company, and then there’s everybody else.
While publishers and marketers alike love to complain, even protest, about the social media giant, its two core ad-supported platforms, Facebook and Instagram, are far and away the most valuable social platforms to media buyers and sellers, Digiday+ research shows.
Earlier this year, Digiday polled media and marketing professionals about the role that social media platforms play in their employers’ businesses. More than 220 people spread across publishers, agencies and brands responded.
Of the eight platforms Digiday asked respondents about, only four were cited as used by a representative number of brands, agencies and publishers, and there was one clear winner in that short list. Half of the survey’s publisher respondents and a majority of buy-side respondents that use Facebook — about 60% of both brand and agency — described it as at least a “valuable” source of revenue; a full third of agency respondents described Facebook as an “extremely valuable” source of clients’ revenues.
Instagram showed similar results, with a majority of agency and brand respondents calling it at least “valuable”; publishers were much less excited about Instagram as a source of revenue.
Outside of that, only YouTube came close to those totals. No other platform notched a score higher than 26%.
Even among younger-skewing platforms including Snapchat, TikTok and Twitch, which non-representative numbers of respondents said they were using, slim percentages indicated they found them useful. For example, just two of the 23 agency respondents said Snapchat was a “valuable” source of revenue; only one of the 12 agency respondents that used Twitch for clients described the video streaming site that way.
Even using the fuzzier metric of “brand-building,” Facebook as a company topped the competition. Nearly 90% of agency respondents described Instagram as at least “valuable” for brand-building, with more than 40% of them describing it as “extremely valuable.” Among buy-side respondents, Facebook the platform ranked third for brand-building, a few percentage points behind YouTube, though much higher numbers of respondents use Facebook than YouTube.
Those numbers were in a different universe from the survey’s emerging platforms, though TikTok acquitted itself well, anecdotally — two thirds of the publishers say they are using it. In fact, the results showed a kind of skepticism toward some of the emerging platforms. Among the four brand-side respondents who said they used Twitch, half said that Twitch was “not valuable at all” for brand-building, and the other half called it “somewhat valuable.” Four of the nine publisher respondents using Clubhouse said it was “not very valuable” or worse for brand-building.
It’s not clear whether this dynamic means that publishers, brands or agencies might reduce their use of these platforms. While all three are under growing pressure to justify the resources they put into every channel, it is also unlikely that the executives who head up social media or audience development are going to let their budgets be reduced.
How the pandemic has been a real a buzz kill for office happy hour bonding, culture
As COVID-19 crawls on, more companies are rethinking the wisdom of mixing booze and the stresses of the workplace.
‘Football has lost its soul’: How Copa90 is repositioning itself around the creator economy
Copa90’s overseers believe there’s another shift happening in tandem with the corporatization of the sport that has the potential to be just as transformative
Why The New York Times’ Wirecutter is ramping up focus on style
In early 2021, Wirecutter soft-launched a new dedicated style section and is is currently hiring for style-dedicated roles.
SponsoredHow retailers can be ready for holiday shoppers this year
Suchi Sastri, managing director and partner, Boston Consulting Group As the holiday season approaches and the pandemic continues to evolve, retailers want to know what to expect. Will e-commerce continue to grow at the rate it did last year? How big of a role will in-store shopping play in holiday shopping? While it’s still early, […]
‘Culture change takes years’: Facing ongoing calls for DE&I gains, publishers set new standards for hiring practices
The media industry is trying to solve a long-standing challenge: it is mostly white and male. Here's how some publishers are doing it.
Meet the ‘absolutist’ with the Section 230 tattoo on Google’s new misinformation policy team
Part of a nascent government affairs and public policy team at Google, Jess Miers is a die-hard fan of the 26-word law that gives legal cover to big tech platforms.