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Which Social Media Platform Will Help You Drive the Most ROI?

Marketers are spending more than ever before on social media and influencer campaigns. But how can you be sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck? We’ve broken down the best social media channels to drive ROI for your business based on your goals. 

It’s as easy as one, two, three!

Step 1: Identify your influencer marketing goals. (If you’re reading this, increased ROI is probably one of them!)

Step 2: Read this article. 

Step 3: Implement your brand’s campaign on the right channel and rake in the big bucks. 

It’s as simple as that. At least, it can be with the help of The Shelf. 

Purple graphic with internet and coin icons below the text: Which Social Media Platform Will Help You Drive the Most ROI?
Listen to a recap of this post.

How Each Platform Can Boost Your ROI

Below you’ll find a breakdown of each platform based on the goals it can best help you achieve. As you know, we’re big fans of a cross-functional approach when it comes to influencer marketing. But it’s good to start with the platform that aligns best with what you’ve identified as your top goal. Then you can build out your campaign and reuse elements across different channels accordingly.

Whatever your goals, there’s an ideal platform for your campaign. Looking to hone in on your Gen Z audience? TikTok is the place to be! Want to increase brand awareness? Try Facebook. Alright, let’s do a deep dive!

Purple graphic with the text: A simple formula for calculating ROI is this: ((Revenue growth - Investment) / Investment) x 100


These days, Instagram is the top dog when it comes to influencer marketing. In fact, 68 percent of marketers consider it the most important social media platform for their marketing efforts. Instagram moves the needle, and it makes sense why. A whopping 2.4 billion users are active on Instagram each month.

And those aren’t passive users.They are highly engaged. Instagram boasts 10x more engagement than Facebook, 54x more engagement than Pinterest, and 84x more engagement than X. Because it’s a highly visual medium, Instagram delivers the best ROI for product launches and customer engagement.


Instagram functions as the influencer marketing gold standard of show, don’t tell. 

Show off your newest product on Instagram using images, videos, Reels, live streams, or even GIFs. Instagram is the platform best suited to consumers’ current preferences. Sixty eight percent of consumers on social media want to see images. And 82 percent prefer watching video than reading social media posts. Give the people what they want and showcase your new products while you’re at it.

Plus, Instagram’s shopping feature allows you to sell your products right from the app. Talk about a win-win!


Thanks to the Explore page and the power of hashtags, discoverability is much higher on Instagram than on other social networks, which helps brands to connect with more people. This means it can be a great platform for reach as well. Especially if you’re targeting younger audiences like Millennials and Gen Z.

There are two main ways to post on Instagram – in the main feed and in your Stories. Both offer different advantages, and both should be used simultaneously for maximum impact. Unlike other platforms where engagement is limited to likes and comments, Instagram offers users a number of ways to interact with your content.

If you post to Instagram Stories, viewers can interact in the following ways:


Once upon a time, you had to have over 10k followers and a business account to include a swipe up link in your Instagram story. Now, anyone can include a sticker link in their stories to drive traffic to their website. (We still recommend having a business account though.) Of course, you should include a clickable link in your profile bio as well.


If there’s something in particular you want your followers to tell you about, then you can post a question on your story. With this feature, you actively encourage engagement by giving your followers the chance to speak directly to you. You can then share their answers on subsequent stories to further increase their effectiveness.


Polls on Stories are pretty self-explanatory. You pose a question to your followers with two to four possible answers and all your followers have to do is click one, and you’ve got direct engagement.

Combine all of these with the usual options of liking, commenting, and direct messaging, and you have a catalyst for huge levels of engagement that you just won’t find on any other social media platform.


While TikTok reigns supreme when it comes to short-form video, Instagram Reels are still hugely effective. The Instagram algorithm heavily favors Reels for good reason. Short-form video is king in the current content landscape.

Reels are especially effective when looking to engage with audiences who value demos. Think makeup tutorials, clothing try-ons, unboxings, or even kids playing with the hottest new toy. It can also be useful to hire influencers who can cross-pollinate your content. TikToks can be reposted as Reels on Instagram and vice versa, so you have the opportunity to engage with your audience on two platforms with just one video. This could especially come in handy if the U.S. ends up passing the proposed TikTok ban.


TikTok is expected to surpass two billion monthly active users by the end of 2024. That is, if the U.S. doesn’t implement a ban before then. While there are plenty of branded accounts on TikTok, influencer marketing is still queen on the platform (and we all know that the queen is higher than king). If you’re looking to target Gen Z, leverage the latest trends, and grow your audience, TikTok could be the platform to yield the best ROI.


It’s no secret TikTok is huge with the youngest generations, but it’s particularly a fan favorite of Gen Z. Currently, 60 percent of TikTok users are Gen Zers. And 80 percent of TikTok users are between the ages of 16 and 34. If your brand’s demographic is young consumers, TikTok is the place to be. 


There are four main ways to market on TikTok: native feed videos, hashtag/trend challenges, brand takeovers, and filters (or lenses). Here’s a quick breakdown of each:

  • Native feed videos can be anywhere from five seconds to ten minutes in length. These can come from your own branded account or the account of an influencer you’ve hired. Think ‘fit checks, product reviews, unboxings, etc.
  • Hashtag challenges and viral trends can look like lip-syncing to a trending sound (aka audio clip), doing a viral dance challenge, or making videos centered around a trending hashtag. The best influencers know how to take a trend, make it their own, and highlight your brand all at once. 
  • Brand takeovers are pretty self-explanatory. Have an influencer take over your brand’s account for the day (or week!) and post content about your products or services using the methods above. 
  • Branded filters and lenses allow users to create videos using your filter or lens. These can incorporate 2D, 3D, and even augmented reality (AR) elements. Plus it allows any user to create content using your filter. Talk about user generated content!


TikTok is a much less targeted platform than some of the traditional influencer marketing spaces, like Pinterest. The For You Page (FYP) allows users to see hundreds of videos per day from creators they don’t yet follow. The algorithm is powerful (and scary accurate) when it comes to recommending content users might like. It’s basically the Instagram Explore page on steroids. 

While you can (and should) always choose influencers with followings that overlap with your target audience, you can rest assured that quality content will extend far beyond the influencer’s followers, making your brand highly discoverable. If you’re shooting for virality, TikTok is the place to do it. And a high quality viral video can do wonders for brand exposure and growing your audience.


Despite the growing popularity of Instagram and TikTok, Facebook still has more than 3 billion monthly users. It was one of the first platforms to be used for influencer marketing, and it’s still a force to be reckoned with. If you’re looking to build a community and brand awareness, especially among Millenials and Gen X, Facebook could be the social media platform for you.


One of the most significant benefits of influencer marketing on Facebook is the platform’s targeting capabilities. Facebook allows pages to post in groups, just like individual accounts. This is huge for tapping into your target audience because you can find the groups your consumers subscribe to and post directly to them there.

Another advantage of Facebook influencer marketing is the ability to evaluate ad recall. You can measure how many people are estimated to remember your ad two days later. Facebook’s brand awareness campaign allows marketers to leverage paid ads to ensure that their posts aren’t just reaching their target audience — but they’re also sticking in their minds. Win, win!

You’ll see even better results on Facebook if you dedicate a budget to advertising on the platform. It’s no wonder 89 percent of marketers use the platform in their campaigns. Facebook ads can bring in some pretty great ROI. The average price for one thousand impressions ranges from $1.01 to $3.00. Not too shabby when compared to  $6.46 for the same on X (Twitter) and $4.00 on Instagram.

The Takeaway: On Facebook, more people will see your ads, and you’ll spend less money. Hello, boosted ROI!


Facebook favors group posts more than anything else right now. Posting to a Facebook group enables you to get your content in front of a group of people who have already demonstrated an interest in your content. You can build your community by engaging with the communities your audience is already a part of. 

Brands can also join and participate in groups as a business page, so social media managers don’t have to worry about their personal brands being overshadowed by their professional brands on Facebook. They can remain separate.

If you’re targeting Gen Z, you may be thinking, Sure, Facebook is good for building older communities, but what about the youth? Never fear. It’s true that platforms like TikTok and Instagram have a better rep with kids these days, but as of 2023, 42 percent of Gen Zers are still on Facebook. So don’t sleep on Facebook’s potential with younger audiences.  


There are more than 498 million active Pinterest users (Pinners). And almost all of them are looking for inspiration to pin before they make their next purchase. If you’re ready to get specific and rake in the big bucks, Pinterest would be a good choice for your brand.  


Graphic of internet windows, charts, and a character in profile above the text: Which Social Media Platform Will Help You Drive the Most ROI?

Pinterest is one of the most reliable social media marketing platforms because influencers can drive twice the engagement of non-promoted posts. Honing in on your target demographic can do wonders for your ROI. While 71 percent of social media users try things suggested to them while scrolling, a whopping 98 percent of Pinners try products suggested to them in pins. 

And Pinners often come back to brands for more. Eighty-five percent of Pinners have purchased something based on pins from brands. If you’ve got a clear picture of who your audience is, find them on Pinterest and start raking in the sales. 


When it comes down to sheer numbers, YouTube rivals Facebook for the top spot. With 2.7 billion monthly active users, chances are your target audience is watching at least one YouTube video per month. This makes YouTube a great option for your next influencer marketing campaign, especially if you’re looking to drive more ROI.


Because YouTube engages users even when they are passively watching, it can make a huge difference in your discoverability, and, ultimately, your influencer marketing ROI. Like TikTok, YouTube takes note of what videos you watch and the channels to which you subscribe. Then they are able to churn out a perfectly curated list of video suggestions. 

If you’re looking to be discovered as a brand or launch a new product, influencer marketing on YouTube could be the way to go. Vlogs, how-tos, and unboxing videos are especially popular and effective on the platform. 

X (Formerly Twitter)

If you’re looking to increase customer satisfaction and engage with the audience you’ve already built, X/Twitter is the platform for you. X is all about engaging with your network, following up with tags and mentions, and doing it all with the power of 280 characters or less.  


Thanks to the fast pace of the online world, we are no longer content to sit on hold for hours with customer service teams (not that we ever liked it in the first place), so businesses need to be able to respond quicker than ever. Cue X. This is the platform for talking with existing customers and solving their customer service inquiries in real-time. 

The downside: Because it’s such a public way of dealing with customer requests, many people love to use this in the hopes of receiving a speedy and positive response, as they know that others will be watching. This means you need to be quick and prepared to help diffuse any situations as soon as possible. 

Providing awesome customer service isn’t just limited to direct questions sent your way. Keeping your eye on brand mentions on the platform is another way to make sure your customers stay as happy as possible.


Engage, engage, engage! Whether you’re Marvel promoting the next Avengers movie or Daquan spreading the next great meme, your Twitter network is key. So much of your reach on Twitter comes from engaging with and sharing other users’ content. Creating content specifically to grab the attention of your Twitter followers can help you grow your network and build your reputation in the process. 

More engagement means more clicks. More clicks mean more shares. And more shares mean more website visits. All that nets out to happier customers and a happier brand. 


Snapchat hasn’t always been the best social media marketing platform, but with the launch of Official Stories, the app finally gave creators the analytics they need to make marketing on the platform worth it. Now creators can track views, demographic breakdowns, audience interests, and even how many minutes their users spent watching their content over the past year. We recommend using Snapchat to cross-pollinate your influencer campaigns and discover what content works best.


The fleeting nature of Snapchat content is a blessing in disguise. With stories expiring after 24 hours (like Instagram and TikTok Stories), this is a great platform to test new content. You can soft launch a campaign directly on Snapchat, consult your analytics, and then decide whether to expand the campaign to other platforms and more posts.  


With more than 65 million decision makers and one billion monthly active users on the platform, LinkedIn is the social platform of choice for professionals. If you’re focusing on B2B marketing, this is the place to get the most bang for your buck. Focus your influencer campaign on LinkedIn if you’re looking to establish authority on a topic or industry, generate leads for your business, and increase your website traffic.


LinkedIn is the place professionals go to connect with, talk to, and hear from other professionals. For brands, LinkedIn presents a moderately captive audience who is checking in for one reason and one reason only – to find professional opportunities. Those opportunities could be sharing an interesting post they read, sharing an idea they want to spread, or sharing information about their company and culture.

So if you’re looking to establish credibility in your industry and build authority as a leading brand in your specific area of expertise, this is the place to do it.


Of the one billion LinkedIn users, three million of them share content weekly, and one million users actually create articles for LinkedIn. But here’s the thing: 91 percent of marketing executives peg LinkedIn as the best place to find quality content. It is currently THE #1 platform B2B marketers use to distribute content. LinkedIn makes up half the traffic to B2B websites. Half! 

So, it’s no surprise LinkedIn leads the pack when it comes to using social media marketing to generate B2B leads. LinkedIn accounts for 89 percent of B2B lead generation.

Sponsored InMail allows users to send personalized messages to other users, regardless of whether there is an existing connection on the platform. Brands can use these messages to facilitate trust with new potential leads, send out invites to webinars or in-person events, and pitch their services to business owners.

InMail isn’t the only advertising option at your fingertips, though. LinkedIn offers a range of different ways to reach new customers.

  • Sponsored Content – Plug some investment into the best-performing existing posts from your company page to help them reach more people. 
  • Display Ads – Use text, images, and video to attract people’s attention as they scroll through their feeds.
  • Dynamic Ads – These are display ads on steroids. These are shown to people based on their activity, making them hyper-targeted compared to the usual fare.

It almost goes without saying that this platform is great for B2B brands or those who have services that would benefit busy professionals. This is probably the most niche of all the social media networks, so not everyone will be able to benefit from advertising here. Make sure you fit the LinkedIn mold before going forward with a campaign there.

The Right Platform is Waiting to Boost Your Social Media ROI

By understanding your goals, you can understand where to place your efforts on social media. Influencer marketing is a great way to bring in customers, engage with your fans, and keep on top of customer service — if done right.

Want to learn more about how to find the best social media channels for your influencer marketing? We can help! Schedule a strategy call with us today. We’re happy to help you learn more about how to leverage the right channels to boost your social media ROI. 

And as always, join our email list for updates on all things social media and influencer marketing. We’ve got the tools and the team to help boost your brand with an A+ influencer campaign. Social commerce is bigger than ever, and we can help you get started and continue to grow your social presence with clicks that convert. 

Ariana Newhouse B2B Writer

About This Author

Ariana Newhouse | B2B Writer

I am a freelance writer and comedian based in Los Angeles. While making people laugh is my jam, it’s not always the company brand. So, I strive to make people feel something. My writing philosophy is collaborative, empathetic, and humanistic. At the end of the day, no matter the message, there are real people on both ends of the process.

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