Social media is undeniably part of building a recognized and respected brand or business.

An active social presence says a brand is likely authentic and that a business is alive and well: Its people are real and relatable, and its products are being shipped.

Several social sites, TikTok most specifically, are also now major players in e-commerce that actively drive direct sales. Done well consistently, social media could eventually pull in the bulk of your orders or leads.

But with well over 150 options—from TikTok to Twitch and Pinterest to Periscope—it’s impossible to have a productive presence on them all.

Thankfully, it’s also not necessary to.

Instead, these are the top social media sites for brand recognition and business growth in 2024, according to specialists at Studio 3 Marketing, who work with both local and billion-dollar brands.


Instagram is a must for brands and most if not all businesses looking for leads or legitimacy. The app’s hyper-visual focus helps you show prospects who you are, what you’re like, and what you offer in ways no other app quite does.


  • Perfectly caters to visual, video, and aesthetic content.
  • Everyone else is on it, including your counterparts and competitors.
  • Users are reportedly 70 percent more likely to buy online than non-users.
  • Vertical video format is ideal for mobile phones, and occasionally boosted by algorithms.
  • 2.4B monthly users spend 8 minutes per visit on average, making it the 2nd most popular social media app worldwide.
  • Cohesive campaigns can place your message and products in front of thousands of potential buyers daily and build a loyal fan base over time.


  • Ecommerce and other brands selling products of all types and at all price points.
  • Service professionals in all verticals, including even conservative and buttoned-up industries.

Cons & Caveats:

  • Your website is a better outlet for long-form written content.
  • Posts typically have a short shelf-life, so blogs are better for certain content.
  • Social is effective because it’s current and continual. You can’t quite set and forget it.
  • Buying followers will tank your reach and account growth; use boosted posts (paid ads) instead.
  • A branding brief and growth strategy are key to consistency. Consistency attracts your tribe.
  • Effort should be made on all social media platforms to convert followers into email subscribers.

“[On Instagram] the possibilities are endless. You can grow organically, but you can also put money behind your reach. The more you post, the more you have the possibility of going viral, and in this day and age, visuals are more impactful than anything else. People see brands on Instagram as authentic businesses.” | Ashley Gurney, social media specialist at Studio 3 Marketing


TikTok likeswise revolves around vertical video content, but the similarities between it and Instagram basically end there. TikTok’s algorithms are interest-based, Instagram’s are (mostly) follower-focused. The people you’re trying to reach are usually fans of one and not the other. So you can—and should—share the same content on both platforms. Just be sure your captions, hashtags, and audio choices are platform-specific. TikTok is specifically a must for ecommerce brands and many professions—surgeons, doctors, lawyers, home service providers, and others—who usually do best when sharing entertaining and educational content.


  • As with Instagram (above).
  • TikTok’s algorithms make it ideal for reaching “random” people with aligned interests.
  • It takes slight effort for users to meet new people and brands on Instagram, but on TikTok, new people, products, and brands are usually all that users see.
  • Products can be sold directly on TikTok, and affiliates can cross post or promote them.


  • Businesses that service people directly should have at least a presence on TikTok.
  • Ecommerce brands should usually focus on TikTok as the social site with the most sales and reach potential.

Cons & Caveats:

  • Work out your brand identity in advance as some of TikTok’s most popular antics might not be right for your profession.
  • Occasional (but highly unlikely) talk of a TikTok ban. Capitalize on it while you can, and encourage email sign ups.


Facebook is fantastic for certain demographics, which tend to be upper middle age or older folks. Brands and service providers should build at least a light presence on it, but decide through research, trial and error whether to invest more heavily into it. Because its reach is so broad—it’s the single most popular social app in the world—ads on it can be incredibly effective, if they’re fine-tuned and targeted to reach the right audience. 


  • World’s most widely-used social app.
  • Ads are easy to set up and get running.
  • Great for reaching certain specific demographics.
  • Superior account management tools make growing a following fairly easy.


  • Businesses and brands.

Cons & Caveats:

  • Not great for all markets or demographics, but okay for most.


YouTube is an unquestionable must for businesses and brands of all kinds. It’s just not the platform to default to for rapid growth. YouTube’s foray into short-form vertical content—called Shorts—has yet to take off (and many users strongly dislike them, as TikTok and Instagram already serve them so well.) But for numerous other reasons, every business and brand should be on YouTube.


  • Billions of users.
  • Ranks extremely well in search.
  • World’s 2nd-largest search engine.
  • Best place to host long-form video content.


  • Businesses and brands.

Cons & Caveats:

  • None particularly. Best for long-form content.

LinkedIn and Twitter, now X, were mentioned by social media specialists as the least likely to be worthwhile for brand growth.


LinkedIn is fantastic for corporate connection but far less valuable in building a connection with buyers or in growing your business presence.

However, because the site establishes legitimacy and ranks incredibly well in search engines, you shouldn’t omit it entirely from your brand play.

Business and brands would be wise to use LinkedIn for at least the following:

  • Corporate announcements on behalf of the company.
  • Posting original or republished articles from a company blog. (In reposts, which often rank higher than new and even established websites, link back to the source of your original content.)

Much like politics, social apps are appealing to very different user bases: Meet your ideal buyer where they spend their time. If you’re trying to reach “competitive people who care about climbing the corporate ladder,” LinkedIn might just be your brand’s best sandbox.

Twitter (X)

Twitter, now known as X, was considered the least favorable social media app to build a presence on from a branding and ROI perspective. Thousands of brands do find success with it, but from the standpoint of clients Studio 3 Marketing typically works with, X came in with the lowest appeal.

Your own business may be an exception, with X as its perfect home.

As with LinkedIn, don’t omit X entirely either. A good minimum use-case scenario is to create an account and publish links to your blogs and other announcements. The sole reason for doing so—assuming you aren’t going to heavily invest in building an X presence—is that search engines rate the site so favorably and will rank its content highly, often on page one. Well ranking, those posts are a gateway to your website, where you want potential buyers to end up anyway.

Where to Focus

Social media specialists at Studio 3 Marketing suggest you focus most heavily on just 1-3 platforms, and that you aim for consistency, rather than virality.

Sure, going viral is nice, but again, not necessary to growth.

Consistency reaps connection, brand-recognition, leads, and profits.

And above are the social sites you’re likely to find success on.

For more on how our results-driven approach to social media marketing can help your brand or business, please reach out.

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