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Social Media: An Essential Marketing Tool for 2021 and Beyond



What do you think of when you hear social media? Is it a secondary or even tertiary marketing tool? Well, think again because social media is here to stay and continues to make a crucial impact on how we communicate with our audiences.

  • According to Statista, in 2020, over 3.6 billion people were using social media worldwide, a number projected to increase to almost 4.41 billion in 2025.

  • 72% of US adults are active on at least one social media platform, according to PEW research, with the majority using a platform on a daily basis

  • According to Hootsuite, 90% of people with access to the internet use social media.

It’s clear that social media is popular but what does that mean for associations and organizations? How is social media used, and how can you utilize these tools to further your organization? The platforms are slowly but surely becoming a one stop shop for businesses and users, with businesses advertising directly to their audiences and users trusting social media to research organizations and even make purchases or register for upcoming events.

  • According to GlobalWebIndex 2018, 54% of social browsers use social media to research products.

  • According to Hootsuite, 44.8% of global internet users used social media to search for brand information in 2020.

  • According to Edison Research, the average Facebook user has clicked on 11 ads in the past month

  • According to Business for Facebook, 66% of Facebook users visit a local business page at least once a week.

  • According to Insider Intelligence, 18.3% of Facebook users made a purchase through the platform in 2020.

  • According to Instagram, 81% of people on Instagram use the platform to research products and services.

In summary: social media is increasingly being used as a platform for researching brands and products. This gives it undeniable power as a marketing tool. On social media, impulse purchases and ‘clicks’ are common. Users can see something they like and immediately click on it to purchase, become a member, or register. Gone are the days when visits to the mall to buy products or to an organization’s website to become a member were necessary.


Even with this information, the question for most associations remains ‘How can I use this worldwide tool to grow the organization, meet new members and strengthen our network’?

The question isn’t how can you, it’s how can’t you? If social media isn’t in your current strategy, it should be. These platforms can support nearly all an associations initiatives in some way, including:

  • Member engagement

  • Event ticket purchases

  • Webinar and education session attendance

  • Non-member engagement and membership growth

  • Certification and credential promotions and awareness

  • Support industry recognition

In a new landscape that has been growing in importance as a communication tool for associations and organizations, how will you leverage social media to strengthen your network?





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