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LinkedIn vs. Facebook: Which Is Best for Business?

July 20, 2020

LinkedIn vs. Facebook: Which Is Best for Business? | AIA Book in a free 30 minute strategy session

The number of social media platforms out there which can host businesses and help them promote themselves is… a lot. It can be overwhelming for owners to know which social network to dive into and create a marketing strategy specifically for them. Or do you just create accounts for all of them?

It gets even more complicated when you have two vastly different social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn. One’s for your friends and family to share photos and updates from their vacations, and the other is for people who want to look for new employment opportunities.

And these descriptions are technically right, but there’s more to both these platforms than meets the eye. Let’s take a look at both of them to see which provides the best tool for a business.

Facebook vs. LinkedIn: A Side by Side Comparison

LinkedIn and Facebook are two vastly different social media platforms that have been created with different intents in mind. Of course, when you start comparing the two you’ll see many elements or functionalities overlap, but knowing what sets them apart is essential to ultimately figure out which of them should be integrated into your marketing strategy.

So let’s compare the two right now.

Facebook:

  • 2.6 billion monthly active users
  • Has many posting functions specific to social media platforms: status updates, liking, commenting, private messaging
  • Supports sharing photos, videos, GIFs, links, and text posts
  • Was initially created as a socializing platform
  • Has a newsfeed
  • Has groups (Facebook Groups)
  • Has a diverse audience

LinkedIn:

  • 80 million monthly active users
  • Supports sharing posts, links, private messages
  • Was initially created as a platform to support recruiting
  • Has a newsfeed
  • Has groups (LinkedIn Groups)
  • Its audience tends to be more on the professionals’ side

So again, apart from a few small technicalities, you could easily confuse the two platforms if you just go about the broad description. But if you boil it down, 4 main differences could potentially help you decide between them:

1. Facebook Has a Larger Audience and a More Diverse Group

From a numbers perspective, Facebook has a lot more to offer, with 2.6 billion monthly active users, compared to LinkedIN’s mere 80 million active users. Now, this doesn’t mean that all the active Facebook users are a potential target audience for any business, but Facebook could provide more opportunities.

Especially when you take into account the types of users it has. For instance, businesses that want to sell a product directly to consumers will most likely be interested in what Facebook offers in terms of advertising opportunities. Your potential target is more diverse, which means more opportunities to sell.

If you’re looking to target decision-makers in a company because you’re a B2B marketer, then LinkedIn’s the better option. On Facebook, some may add their job title and company they work for, while others don’t. But on LinkedIn, that’s the whole point of the platform.

2. People Spend More Time on Facebook

LinkedIn users spend around 17 minutes a month using the site. That’s a very small window to catch their attention, especially if you compare it with Facebook’s average 58 minutes a day.

This may be because of user intent. People go on Facebook without a specific intent to do something, other than just scroll through their news feed. On LinkedIn, the chances are higher that people sign on with a specific purpose – to look for a job, read a message, share something, etc.

So on Facebook, you have a lot more chances of engaging a user based on just the amount of time they spend on the platform, but you may encounter users who don’t have an expressed interest in what you’re selling. On LinkedIn, you get the user who is there, focused, though it’s easy to miss the windows when they’re active on the platform.

3. LinkedIn Provides Better Lead Generation

Lead generation is LinkedIN’s thing, though Facebook tries its best to keep up. And if you’re a B2B marketer, then LinkedIn is likely the main source of all your most valuable leads. You have different user intent, have people with public job titles (which you can target in lead ads), and the services even have lead gen forms to make it easier.

4. Both Have a Diverse Range of Ad Types

Facebook ads are known to be extremely diverse, but you’ll be surprised to discover LinkedIn ads are not far behind. Both have a mix of different ad types, such as carousels, lead ads, video. LinkedIn has an additional Sponsored InMail type of ads that allows you to show ads directly in someone’s inbox. Facebook isn’t quite there yet.

Facebook ads have more targeting capabilities, and you can use a lot of personal information to perfect your targeting, but LinkedIn is still better at lead ads for businesses thanks to LinkedIN’s user base.

Again, it may come down to what your business goals are, and where you have a better chance of getting to your target audience.

The Conclusion?

In the Facebook versus LinkedIn debate, the winner is kind of both, and neither at the same time. It’s a very frustrating truth in digital marketing, but the business goals are ultimately what dictates what kind of means are best to help you reach them.

So if you’re a B2B marketer and need to run lead ads, LinkedIn offers better chances of success. If you’re a shop looking to promote their catalogue and get people to buy products, Facebook carousel ads allow you to promote multiple products in the same ads.

Schedule a free 30-minute strategy session with our Facebook Marketing Agency experts now and let’s see what you can do to improve your Facebook marketing efforts to boost results.

Book in a free 30 minute strategy session
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