Are your followers ghosting you? Use these social media marketing stats to refine your strategy and spark engagement.

Here, you’ll find: 

  • 2023 social media trends and highlights
  • The latest social media marketing stats for every platform
  • How paid social media campaigns boost revenue
  • Changes in social media usage patterns this year

Persuading people to buy your products on social media takes more than posting a snappy Instagram Story or hopping on a viral TikTok trend. You’ll want to monitor social media marketing stats and trends to maximize your impact and stay relevant to the billions of daily active users.

Whether your audience hangs out on Tik Tok, YouTube, Facebook, or beyond, social channels offer unique opportunities to connect with existing — and new — audiences. 

We compiled the latest 2023 social media stats to inspire your marketing campaigns. They inform the revenue-generating paid social media campaigns we manage for our clients, and they can help you, too.

Ready to ignite impressions, likes, follows, and conversions, and build a cult following on social media? Keep reading.

Social media marketing stats at a glance

  • The social media ad market is expected to hit $358 billion by 2026 (Statista)
  • Micro-influencers have the highest post engagement rate across TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube (Shopify)
  • Gen-Z is ready to spend-Z, taking the lead on shopping more than any other generation (Afterpay)
  • TikTok is expected to generate almost $14 billion in ad revenue by 2026 (Statista)
  • Instagram has the highest ROI for in-app product sales (Hubspot)
  • Twitter Ads reach men 3X more than women (Hootsuite

17 social media marketing stats and trends 

Business people watching a live streaming.

Whether your audience hangs out on Tik Tok, YouTube, Facebook, or beyond, social channels offer unique opportunities to connect with existing and new audiences. (Image: Adobe)

Gen Z loves to shop, Baby Boomers thrive on Facebook, video content reins supreme, and Pinterest is a revenue-generating secret weapon. Let’s take a deep dive into the data.

1. The social media ad market is expected to hit $358 billion by 2026 (Statista)

That figure entails some seriously deep pockets pumped into social media campaigns, and according to 97% of Fortune 500 companies, it’s worth it. 

Clients often wonder which is better: Google Ads or social media ads. Based on successful campaigns, a two-pronged strategy is ideal to attract, and convert, your customers. 

Plus, you can toggle campaign schedules to display ads on social marketing channels when your audience is most active, which improves your ROAS (return on ad spend).   

Paid social media ads offer unique benefits. A Facebook or Instagram Ad campaign will help you find an audience with hobbies and interests aligned with your business. Once you have their attention, you can humanize your brand by sharing helpful information and tips, and starting conversations they find interesting and valuable.

From there, you’ve built trust, and that trust translates to that multi-billion dollar pie comprising the social media ad market.

The kicker? You need to catch social media users before they keyword or search terms into Google. How? By working with social media algorithms to capture potential customers based on their viewing history and engagement habits.

Next up: is Facebook still relevant in 2023?

2. Facebook is the most popular social media channel for marketers globally (Statista)

Facebook thumbs up logo

Facebook boasts a whopping 2.96 billion monthly users. (Image: Adobe)

Does that surprise you? Facebook seems to be on a social downslide, but don’t underestimate the age group that uses Facebook the most: Baby Boomers. The platform boasts a whopping 2.96 billion monthly users, and they like to shop.

No wonder 90% of social media marketers use Facebook to reach their customers. Still, Statista mentions that despite the channel’s worldwide popularity, marketers plan to reduce their Facebook efforts in the near future. Instagram is a close second, with 79% of marketers using the platform, followed by LinkedIn at 61%. 

Why is Facebook still a good spot to spend ad dollars? We like it for its affordability, visual impact for retailers, and relatively high engagement, especially for brands in the ecommerce, automotive, travel, and non-profit spaces. 

3. Number of social media users expected to hit six billion in 2027 (Statista)

The sheer reach potential of social media makes it a valuable tool for exposure, a purpose guiding most marketing professionals. And the number of daily active users only continues to rise every year.

But the sheer number of people on social media doesn’t mean you’ll see success. We’ve seen plenty of social media campaigns that fall flat. 

The best way to catch the snags? Conducting a social media audit. This process helps you itemize every aspect of your campaigns, from performance and audience analysis to cohesion across content. 

With this insight, you’ll understand which social channels, content types, and scheduling engages and converts your audience, and which fall short. The end goal of a social media audit is to tweak your strategy to improve engagement and conversions.

Not sure where to start? We’d love to help

4. Gen-Z is ready to spend-Z, taking the lead on shopping more than any other generation (Afterpay)

Despite major inflation and sky-high rents, Gen Z says they have no plans to stop shopping. 

While 77% of surveyed Gen-Zers expected price increases, 25% plan to buy more, supporting their favorite sustainable and ethical brands, of course. 

If your audience comprises trendsetting Gen-Z shoppers, this is great news. Consider appealing to them with personalized shopping ads on TikTok and Instagram. And forget about static posts, they want video content.

Step aside Millennials, there’s a new shopper in town, and they’re ready to drive revenue in 2023.

5. TikTok is expected to generate almost $14 billion in ad revenue by 2026 (Statista)

Sample social media app interface on mobile phone showing shared

TikTok is a favorite video advertising channel for its competitively lower CPM (cost per mille, or cost per one thousand impressions) to other platforms. (Image: Adobe)

If a picture paints 1,000 words, how many can a video portray? TikTok is making it rain, but why are marketers pumping serious ad dollars into the platform? 

Maybe it’s because the average person watches videos for 19 hours a week online. Furthermore, TikTok is a favorite video advertising channel for its competitively lower CPM (cost per mille, or cost per one thousand impressions) to other platforms.

But Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts pose significant competition. TikTok has faced some political challenges recently, with the U.S. threatening to ban the platform from government devices. 

Despite the controversy, videos are quick converters, and you don’t necessarily need Tik Tok to reap the benefits. 

A strong takeaway here is the power of video across various platforms.

Sprout Social shares that video is an underused content format on many social platforms. Compared with Tweets, posts, photos, and other types of content, video only makes up 14% of Facebook content, 11% of Instagram content, and 5% of Twitter content. 

Looking to slide into a money-making content gap? Video content is your ticket.

6. Instagram Reels have a user reach of 892% for accounts with small followings (Statista

Instagramm reels icon, line vector illustration

Instagram brands with 500 followers or less could achieve an 892% reach versus a 77% reach from feed posts. (Image: Adobe)

Are you a small business? Then we have good news: you don’t need to hit influencer status to reach thousands of people on Instagram. 

All you need is Reels.

Statista found that Instagram brands with 500 followers or less could achieve an 892% reach versus a 77% reach from feed posts. 

Meaning? The more followers you have, the lower your reach.

Those Reels figures start to peter off the more followers you have, hitting only 64% for accounts with 50K followers or more. 

So if you have a small following, Reel Ads are your new best friend. You can reach immense numbers of followers while they’re watching their favorite Reels, blending seamlessly if you have a strong enough hook and concept. 

But before you whip out your iPhone and go bananas on filming, remember that people can like, share, comment, and save a Reel Ad for later. Instead of selling, focus on sparking conversations and building trust.

7. Zara was the most mentioned brand on Instagram in 2022 (Influencer Marketing Hub)

Imagine the traffic you’d get on your website if you were mentioned 182,000 times on Instagram. Influencer Marketing Hub chalks these impressive numbers up to Zara’s 66,000 influencers that regularly post about their products. The combined impact? A long reach of more than 1.2 billion people.

If you look at the fashion giant’s social media posts, you’ll see it spares nothing when it comes to eye-popping visuals, suspenseful product launches, and rich, brand-aligned messaging. 

Zara also joins trending conversations about social issues, from Pride to International Women’s Day. 

If you’re looking for inspiration on how to stay relevant and harness influencer marketing to supercharge your reach, take a note from Zara’s playbook.

8. Twitter Ads reach men 3X more than women (Hootsuite)

We know Twitter users encompass more men than women, but the 3X ad reach skew toward male audiences isn’t as obvious. Twitter sheds some light, citing a 35% increase in global ad engagement in 2022. 

But before you write off Twitter Ads due to your primarily female audience, remember that you can target audiences based on other demographics

It’s important to note that its conversion tracking doesn’t quite stack up to Google’s. Plus, you won’t enjoy as many reporting features or quick results, especially if you’re a smaller business. 

But if you have a niche audience that spends a lot of time on Twitter, it’s worth the investment. Just remember that you’ll need a detailed reporting mechanism to track and improve your progress. 

Our proprietary tech, ConversionIQ, keeps us up-to-date with metrics and results in real-time for all social media and search platforms, including Twitter. 

9. Social media influences 36% of Millennials on which brands to purchase from (Shopify

If you thought Gen Z was the primary generation making purchasing decisions on their mobile apps — think again. While Gen Z is more persuaded by the influencers promoting the brands, Millennials head straight to the source, following the actual brands. 

This direct connection means brands have more impact on how Millennials make buying decisions. 

Millennials and Gen Z aren’t as different as TikTok paints them to be; turns out, both generations use one route or another to buy on social media.

Meaning? No matter your audience, your social media presence should be active, engaging, and relevant. 

10. Micro-influencers have the highest post engagement rate across TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube (Shopify)

Micro-influencers generate more audience trust, thanks to their intimate social media environment. They offer more one-on-one engagement and reply to comments, and this personalization pays off on social media. 

Now that’s not to say influencers with larger followings don’t spark conversions, but they tend to have more brand partnerships, and their audiences may be more discriminating in trusting their recommendations. 

If you want to build brand awareness, boost traffic, enhance thought leadership, and garner more leads? Micro-influencers take the lead. 

We should also mention that engagement rate in general spiked highest for TikTok users, over YouTube and Instagram, still for micro-influencers, at 18%. 

11. Over 80% of brands will create an influencer marketing budget for 2023 (Influencer Marketing Hub)

What’s a common thread we’re seeing for 2023 social media advertising trends? The power of influencers. Listen up SaaS brands, because influencer marketing will be more important for your content marketing strategy than ever this year. 

Your sales cycle is lengthy, and you’re asking for a monthly transaction versus just one purchase. This makes customers more selective about which software to subscribe to. 

The solution for building trust and outlining the benefits that make your product subscriber-worthy? Influencers. Long gone are the days of the hard sell. Today, people want to buy into a story, not just a product. Influencers help to foster that story, illuminating how your offering solves a common problem.

What better way to convince audiences why your brand is worth it than with a recommendation from someone they trust? 

12. 45% of U.S. social media shoppers think brands should engage with comments (Shopify)

The cardinal rule of social media engagement is this: don’t post and disappear. Engagement is a two-way street, and you need to engage with your customers if you want to keep the conversation going.

According to 45% of U.S. adults who make purchases on social media channels, that includes responding to both positive and negative comments.

This is vital for any PR or reputation management. Just like we insist our clients respond to Google reviews, they should also manage customer relationships on social posts.

Accounting SaaS, Quickbooks, shows us how it’s done with this same-day, attentive response to a negative Instagram comment:

Quickbooks Instagram reply

Bottom line? You’re going to encounter backlash here and there. Don’t shy away, as that will heighten the suspicion from observant followers on the edge of their seats to see how you respond. 

Instead, walk through the issue with your customers and respectfully guide them toward a solution.

13. Instagram has the highest ROI for in-app product sales (Hubspot)

Here’s an image: you’re scrolling on Instagram and notice a unique kitchen appliance. You click on it, browse the Instagram store, and then move on.

Hours later, you open the app again, and a wave of other unique kitchen appliances pop up in your feed.

The Instagram algorithm knows what you want, and it’s delivering it to your digital doorstep in spades.

With that in mind, have you updated your Instagram shop yet? If you haven’t, you’re missing out on serious ROI this year, according to Hubspot

Hubspot points out that Instagram has the “most developed social shopping tools,” closely followed by Facebook. When the shopping experience is a breeze, people are more apt to buy.

Slide into conversion-ripe audiences with flawlessly aesthetic shopping ads and curated posts that compel purchases.

14. 36% of Gen Z searches for brands on social media apps over search engines (Hubspot)

When you think of SEO, you think of Google. And if you have an older user base, maybe Bing. But marketers need to shift their SEO strategy to include social media apps as well, especially for a Gen Z audience. 

If you have branded keywords for Google, don’t stop there. Use them on Instagram, Facebook, and Tik Tok as well.

Eighty-seven percent of marketers predict that social media users will flock to social apps to search for brands. 

So, how do you optimize your social media accounts for SEO? Hubspot shares three strategies: 

  • Use relevant keywords and hashtags in posts, captions, and your bio
  • Choose a searchable username. Avoid long-winded, special-character-filled handles
  • Adopt the same username across different platforms for cohesion and continuity

15. People who use Pinterest spend twice as much each month than people who don’t (Sprout Social)

Pinterest is a visual search engine, making it an ideal place for people to find new brands and products. 

We’ve noticed a few notable stats from Sprout Social surrounding household income and spending for Pinterest usersTurns out, people who use Pinterest tend to earn more money, likely accounting for their higher monthly spending.

Forty-five percent of Americans on Pinterest have a household income higher than $100,000, which is above the national median. 

Plus, so many brands disregard Pinterest. It’s worth tapping into if you’re a SaaS business with pricey subscription plans. 

16. Facebook has almost 3 billion monthly active users (Statista)

That number has consistently increased over the last 15 years. Facebook boasts the highest number of users across all social networks, including Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter. While marketers should certainly take note of the growing popularity of other networks, it’s important to remember that Facebook is still King. 

Facebook users tend to take their time scrolling through the feed, too, spending an average 33 minutes per day on the app.

Now, are all these users evenly distributed across the world? Not quite. But if you have a target audience in the U.S., Brazil, Indonesia, or India, you’ll want to roll out a Facebook Ads campaign. 

17. Teens choose YouTube over other social media platforms (Pew Research)

Are you marketing to teenagers? Then YouTube should be the base of your digital marketing strategy

Pew Research discovered most teens (95%) use YouTube over other apps

Of course, YouTube users span all ages, as the video platform is popular across pretty much every demographic. But you’ll need more than an edited video per week to reach your target audience. 

Oh yes — YouTube SEO is its own entity. 

For starters, you’ll want to optimize every title, meta description, and description with keywords and relevant tags. Use customized URLs, playlists, and thumbnails for optimal results. 

Need a helping hand? We’ve got you covered with our paid social media marketing services!

The takeaway

TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook — phew. It’s no secret social media marketing is an enormous undertaking. After all, the statistics, figures, and trends are constantly evolving.

Each of these apps comes with unique challenges and nuances for every target audience. 

Plus, shifts in politics, customer behavior, and costs will constantly challenge today’s social media marketer. Use these statistics to stay ahead of the changing tides and build marketing efforts that reach the right audience.

We’ve seen firsthand the revenue potential of a solid social media marketing strategy, from exponential traffic increases to sky-high conversions

We’re here to step up your game and transform you into a trendsetter so that this time next year, your brand will be the success story used as an example for how to slay social media marketing.

Ready to get down to business with social media marketing? Let’s talk.

Contact HawkSEM for Free Consultation