A common social media duel in the business world is LinkedIn vs Facebook. Business owners and marketers often compare the two wondering which is more effective for generating leads and progressing their business. What gets the highest ROI? Where does your ideal customer spend more time? These questions can send you into a whirlwind of indecision if you’re not clear on your social media marketing strategy. In this post, we compare LinkedIn and Facebook for business to see what’s better for your brand.
Linkedin vs Facebook Demographics
Unsurprisingly, the demographic makeup of Facebook and LinkedIn differs. Facebook sustains a much larger and more general audience with nearly 3 billion users. LinkedIn has only about 64 million users, and the platform has a much more specific focus (think job seekers, professionals, recruiters, and businesses).
According to a 2021 Statista study, the largest age group on both platforms is 25-34. Facebook has a wider range of ages, with plenty of teens and seniors on the platform as well. LinkedIn is quite evenly split between male and female users. Meanwhile, Facebook skews a bit more female. These subtle differences may or may not impact your brand’s success. It all depends on what you offer and who you’re trying to reach.
Advertising on Linkedin & Facebook
Running ads on each platform will differ too. Facebook Ads uses interest-based targeting and general demographics (eg. age, gender). Meanwhile, LinkedIn uses career-related targeting such as your field, job title, or company. Both platforms allow you to pay whatever amount you want toward an ad campaign. However, Facebook’s PPC is significantly lower because its audience is less specific. LinkedIn ads will cost you 5x more money. But it’s likely you’ll see a significantly higher ROI too. So it may balance out.
User intent is important. For example, many customers report using Facebook to discover new products and brands. On the other hand, LinkedIn is considered the largest B2B advertising platform in the US. Matching your activity to what your audience is looking for is key. Facebook users are more likely to expect entertaining content. LinkedIn users are more likely to be browsing for something specific. They might be looking for a job, info about a company or industry, or software solutions.
In addition to user intent, it’s critical to consider your own intent. What is your aim on the platform? If you want to become an influential thought leader, LinkedIn is a more natural place to pursue that. Facebook is a more natural place for e-commerce sales. As a new business, you might be trying to raise brand awareness. An older business might aim to foster stronger relationships and build brand loyalty. Review each platform to see if these aims are achievable with your current (hopefully relevant) audience.
LinkedIn vs Facebook Strengths
Facebook and LinkedIn are typically considered the same kind of network. But while LinkedIn is run like an application, Facebook is run more as a social sharing platform. People regard Facebook as both a place to connect with friends and a place to tune into global conversations. For this reason, many other digital spaces have set up integrations with Facebook. This has made Facebook the connector of many different applications, industries, and social tribes. In this sense, it’s a creative smorgasbord of voices.
Facebook is the perfect place to:
- build trust with customers and newcomers
- share blogs, videos, and posts
- show your brand identity and values
- run contests, start conversations, and encourage engagement
It’s worth noting that LinkedIn is primarily a platform for recruiting. Many of the newer features on the platform are specifically designed for recruiters. This is where they make most of their revenue. They’ve tacked on several capabilities like blogging, private messaging, and status updates. But hiring or finding work is the main focus for most people on the platform. So if you’re a recruiter or a business owner who knows you’ll be doing a lot of hiring, LinkedIn is worth your investment. It might also be worth your time to compare LinkedIn vs Indeed.
LinkedIn is great for:
- building an employer brand
- b2b advertising
- networking with colleagues
- sharing company announcements
LinkedIn vs Facebook Weaknesses
To wrap things up, here are a few more angles to consider when comparing the two platforms:
- Limited Personal Content: LinkedIn is primarily focused on professional networking and career-related content. It may not be the ideal platform for personal updates, casual conversations, or sharing non-professional interests.
- Less Casual Engagement: LinkedIn’s professional nature often results in more formal and less casual engagement. Discussions and interactions can be more business-oriented, and personal connections may feel more transactional.
- Privacy Concerns: Facebook has faced criticism regarding user privacy and data handling in the past. This can be a concern for those who are cautious about their online privacy.
- Fake News and Misinformation: Due to the open nature of Facebook, it’s been a breeding ground for the spread of misinformation. This can undermine the credibility of information shared on the platform.
- Potential for Distractions: Facebook’s diverse content and the presence of various engaging features, such as games and videos, can be distracting and time-consuming. It may lead to reduced productivity or excessive time wasted.
- Algorithmic Filtering: Facebook’s algorithmic feed can create an echo chamber effect by showing users content that aligns with their interests and beliefs. This can limit exposure to diverse perspectives and opinions.
*To see more of the advantages and disadvantages of LinkedIn, check out Indeed vs LinkedIn.
What’s the Verdict?
Businesses around the world use Linkedin and Facebook alike. Both platforms have a heavy arsenal of features with plenty of ways to connect with an audience. Facebook is ideal for B2C marketing and can help with brand awareness. However, it’s easy to get lost. Such a densely-populated platform can serve so many purposes. If you’re looking to do professional networking or hiring, LinkedIn is the better choice.