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The Top 8 Social Networks For Business

Social Networks

Recently, Adobe’s released their 5th annual CMO Guide to The Social Landscape highlighting the top 8 social networks for businesses.

Adobe evaluated each platform based on 4 criteria: SEO, brand awareness, customer communication, and traffic generation.

The Big 4: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube.
These top networks have been covered each of the last 4 years. And while Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube should be top of mind for any marketer, not all businesses are creating content specifically for these channels.

The content that performs well on Facebook can be very different from that which performs well on Twitter and LinkedIn. The audiences on each platform has it’s own expectations, and context.

And YouTube is a totally different thing. Very few brands have teams dedicated to the art of creating effective video and yet many businesses still seek to create “viral videos”. Not every video has to achieve the success of the Corning World of Glass video.

Slideshare: The New Kid On The Block
This year, Adobe added Slideshare to the list. I have been saying for years that Slideshare is one of the greatest opportunities for businesses to create effective content that helps their audience.

I like Slideshare because it is a completely different kind of content from blogs, tweets and videos. It forces you to think visually, to tell a story and to create something that is helpful. It is also one of the top sites for business professionals.

The Niche-Players: Google+, Pinterest, Instagram
I believe Google+ is an important channel because of the role Google plays in search and also because of the growing importance of author rank.

Pinterest and Instagram provide access to a unique audience and the picture-based content is a little different in context from some of the other platforms. Businesses should consider each of these platforms carefully.

Tumblr, StumbleUpon: The Forgotten Ones
I covered both of these in my own review on the top 9 social networks for businesses 2 years ago.

Some brands are finding ways to use them quite effectively. IBM is doing a nice job with their Smarter Planet from a B2B marketing perspective. I have tried a couple of times to test StumbleUpon but haven’t cracked the code.

How about you? Which ones do you think are most important or have been missed?

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