Facebook’s global dominance of the social media landscape is no secret. Statista has recently shown that the big blue network has more monthly active users globally than Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Pinterest combined. And not by a small margin. By roughly 30% (give or take a million people here and there). That dominance is also reflected across Africa, where growth in Facebook usage is outstripping global trends. Major African markets have seen a 25% increase in the number of active social media users, and a 20% increase in the number of mobile social media users (world-wide worx, 2015-2016). Facebook is the clear and undisputed champion here; with 20 million users in Nigeria and Kenya alone; and the highest penetration of social media users in South Africa, Namibia and Botswana (Neilsen, 2016).
When it comes to mobile, well, Facebook dominates again. In fact, it isn’t just the most popular social media network, it’s the most popular mobile activity in Nigeria and Ghana, and the second most popular mobile activity in Kenya, Uganda and South Africa. This based on a survey of over 3,500 people across these markets in 2015.
Think about that for a second Facebook is the most popular thing to do on your phone. Not make calls. Not take pictures. Just… Facebook (and that excludes Facebook messenger).
Now consider what it means for your brand
Maintaining an active, culturally-relevant Facebook page is fundamental in African markets – when internet users are accessing the social media site more than they are the internet directly, a Facebook page becomes as important, or more important, than a corporate website. And this is amplified by Facebook’s recent moves towards content hosting (video being a primary element). Further, understanding local trends in order to ensure the aforementioned cultural relevance is key. You can’t just have a Facebook page. You have to have a page that is local. And that means you need to be local, whether your head office is in Lagos or London.
And then there’s the Facebook empire…
Beyond all of these numbers indicating Facebook’s clear ownership of the social media landscape across Africa, there’s another story, and it’s about other companies that Facebook owns.
Instagram, the clear leader in the visual social media landscape, is Africa’s exploding social network – it grew over 133% in South Africa from 2014 to today (Fuseware).
And Whatsapp is fast becoming the OTT messaging app of choice – it’s so prevalent that local carriers are lobbying for a piece of the companies profits.
Again, integrating these platforms into your digital presence in Africa and other emerging markets is key, but it needs to be locally relevant, and that’s where Africa is a complicated emerging market to penetrate. No country or region is the same. You need local insight, local expertise, and local “people” to make your social media marketing a success. You could launch local operations across the continent to achieve this goal.
For more information about what our award winning marketing agency can do for you, why not take a look at the digital marketing services we offer or contact us to tell us more about your business? Offering everything from PPC management to creative social media marketing services, we can help with whatever you need.