“Social media”
Once a medium to stay connected to people, social media has now become an inevitable part of everyone’s lives. With rapid digitisation, everyone has easy access to the internet and with that to social media platforms. They have also become an important medium of digital marketing, and millions of brands have benefitted by using social media as a marketing tool.
In the last decade or two, the use of these platforms has increased at an astounding rate. Many new sites have formed, while few vastly popular ones have shut down as well. So let’s take a look at some of the most influential social media sites which are operational now.
Top three social media platforms and their reach:
Gone are the days of Orkut and Yahoo! Messenger. They have now been replaced by a handful of new sites. They are:
1. Facebook:
The most popular networking site, Facebook has been operational since 2004. With time it has grown into a huge platform, with almost 1.8 billion active monthly users. Many social influencers have taken to Facebook to talk about various issues and have made the site a place where people can truly interact with each other through groups, communities, posts, likes and comments.
It is also a hugely successful marketing platform, where companies and brands endorse themselves and reach out to clients via groups and messages. Also the new Facebook LIVE promotes a more interactive branding strategy for businesses.

2. YouTube:
A platform to share videos, YouTube is a bit different from other social media sites. It allows people to create channels through which they can create and upload videos and gather subscribers. The more subscribers a channel has, the more views it can garner for its videos. YouTube earns its revenue from advertisements by Google.
The site was founded in 2005 and as of now has more than 1 billion hours worth of content watched each day! Google acquired it in the year 2006.

3. Instagram:
The third most popular social media platform is Instagram. It is a site that allows people to share pictures and videos from their accounts and gather followers. It started as a simple platform to share pictures, but soon developed into a marketing tool. Thousands of brands, ranging from big to small, market their products over this platform by reaching out to customers via pictures and videos. It was launched in the year 2010. However, Facebook soon acquired it in 2012.
Some other influential social media platforms are Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, Google+, Linkedin etc. However in terms of popularity, the above three tops the list!
The social media platform with the most reach:
Amongst so many sites, Facebook is unarguably the social media platform with the most reach. The sheer number of monthly users of Facebook has made it possible to become the most used platform. Initially, it started out as a medium to stay connected with friends and family but soon became a marketing haven for millions of brands of all sizes. Also, social influencers took to Facebook to speak directly to their followers and facilitated interaction between all.
Facebook has also acquired Instagram and WhatsApp recently, making it the undisputed winner in the race of social media platforms.