How You Should Spend Your Marketing Budget: Facebook vs Twitter vs Pinterest

Have you thought about spending money on social media marketing? Some people say it is a waste of money, but I’ve seen a huge ROI. I currently spend over $15,000 a month on Facebook and Linkedin advertising for and am able to get a nice return.

Just think of it this way… sites like LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and even Pinterest are all ranked within Alexa’s top 100 popular list.

So, the real question you should be asking yourself is… which social site should I be spending my money on?

Download a printable version of this infographic.

Click on the image below to see a larger view:

social media landscape

Click here to view an enlarged version of this infographic.


Just because some people claim there is no ROI in social media marketing, it doesn’t mean you should ignore those sites. Those social sites are so popular, you have no choice but to try to market on them.

Have you tried to leverage a social media site? If so, feel free to leave a comment with your experience.

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  1. Great infographic! You said you spend 15,000 dollars/month on Facebook and Linked in advertising. Do you spend any money on Pinterest and Twitter as well?

    • I did test out Twitter, but I lost money on it.

      I haven’t played around with Pinterest enough yet.

      • I think you should keep your content / product type first before choosing a social media website to invest your money on:

        Here is a quick list of product / content type VS the social media website(s):

        Fashion Industry: Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook

        Media and News Industry: Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube (video marketing)

        Food products: Facebook, Pinterest

        Blogging and Digital Media: Facebook, Twitter, Google+

        Home Products – Cosmetics, home appliances, etc. : Facebook, Twitter

        Insurance, Finance and Stocks industry : Linked In, Twitter.

        Hopefully, this list can be increased to all other industries as well.

        Another options if your budget is low (avg. $1000 – $5000 per month)

        – paid blog postings
        – hiring freelancers for your marketing
        – paid tweets

        Hope this works out for you! If not, you can contact me via email for personalized assistance on how to market your product well on digital media.


  2. Pinterest only drives traffic to my site when I link to info graphics, Facebook drives only the dedicated followers but out of the three twitter beat the others by a mile.

  3. Neil, that is a good demographic.

    Did you manage to test out stumbleupon? I do like to test but could not find much case studies.

    • Hey Simon,

      I actually just posted a review of StumbleUpon’s Paid Discovery.. in short, it depends on what you’re marketing.

      I’ll refrain from posting a link in the comments, but if you click on my name, you’ll find it.

    • StumbleUpon hasn’t converted well for me in the past. It is great to drive blog traffic if you are just looking for numbers…

  4. $15,000 is a rather striking statistic.

    It’d make a very interesting case study as to how you track, analyse and justify that spend.

  5. Hey Neil,

    It means that we should spend our budget in Facebook because Facebook has more users ?

    Thank you for excellent post.


  6. Great content as always Neil! I placed an ad with Facebook about 5 days ago and have yet to hear back from them with an approval. Do you know how long the approval process takes?


  7. Can you tell us more about how LinkedIn has worked for you? Buying ads? Promoting content through groups?

    • Buying ads. I currently spend around $4.50 a click and get a nice return. I just can’t get enough traffic from it.

  8. toledo wedding photographers :

    To me it makes sense that if I’m in the photography market, social media sites related to weddings would be the best bang for the buck right? But, I’m not business or marketing pro so what advice would you give me?

  9. Could you break down, what you spend the $15k on, what you look for, in terms of results, and how you are measuring the long term inpact.

  10. Business should definitely be on these popular sites. But in my opinion, its better to concentrate on social sites that drives the most traffic or leads. Of course it’s a must to be on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn. Neil spends the most money on Facebook and LinkedIn. Track and measure the response from all social campaigns and spend on the popular two if you must.

  11. Sayeed Ahsan Khan :

    It’s depends on the choice… But I agree with Neil… Personally I prefer to spend on linkedIn because there you can find the serious customer’s because they know what they are looking for!

  12. Great infographic and insight Neil. Thanks!

    here is a funny video that fits the theme. lol

  13. Do you use special landing pages designed for social media or just the site as it is?

  14. I would love to see a comparison to YouTube since it’s one of the oldest and largest social media sites. What’s the average time on YouTube, the click through rate, the conversion rate, pages visited, value of sale, etc. compared to the ones listed above. Great info graphic. Who does those for you?

  15. Great info bro. Just wondering how you break down the 15K. My fb campaigns did well for Likes and branding, also helped in assisted conversion. Linkedin is a more serious crowd, and the targeting is pretty straight. How did you spend the money on Pinterest, was that just for creating infographics? Sounds interesting anyways.

    • Here is my breakdown…

      $10,000 a month on LinkedIn ads. I am spending under $1000 on Facebook remarketing (Perfect Audience) and $4000 directly with Facebook.

  16. Thanks on the useful data on advertising. Well structured strategy always pays-off. I approve of using these media , even for start ups. How about Stumbleupon and Instagarm? Do you have any data on these two that can be of use?
    Best regards,

    • StumbleUpon works well for blog posts to boost view numbers and potentially get link backs. But it provides a negative ROI… at least for me.

      As for Instagram, I haven’t done much with it yet.

  17. David-Africa's Opportunities :

    Hey Neil,

    This is a very informative infographic particularly with all the demographic data. It is very useful.

    Thanks for sharing this.

  18. Hi Neil can you tell us what is the best solution with facebook CPC or CPM and why is not possible anymore to add keywords to faceBook ads campaing


  19. Purba ( :

    Hi Neil,
    Thanks! Great data on marketing. I would like to know what you should do if you don’t have $15,000 to spend on marketing/month. Is there a minimum amount that you have to spend to see any kind of return? And also, how should we break it down?

  20. Hi Neil,

    I think you’ve driven the point home. The social network is the mainstay for today’s online marketer.
    What are your thoughts about Youtube? I think it comes neck-to-neck with Facebook on many parameters.



    • YouTube works out great. For me it is a bit different than Facebook in which I mainly have been able to get YouTube to be profitable for ecommerce related ads.

      It also has worked well for subscription businesses.

  21. Hi Neil,

    Must say I’m a bit disappointed by this article. Usually your articles are pure gold – lots of actionable items. Where’s the golden nugget here?

    Social media is good, advertise there?

    Where is the meat of this data? 🙂 So you spent $15K a month – what did you find out?

    What was your ROI, which site had the highest ROI, what’s the lesson learned? Which site is better to advertise on for your audience, etc, etc.

    The article does NOT answer the question it poses – So just how should you spend your marketing budget: Facebook, twitter or Pinterest?

    • I think the golden nugget is find a way to sell cooking products to people on Pinterest 😉

    • I have to agree with Pavel. I love your articles Neil and always enjoy reading them. However, I only enjoy reading them if I learn something. These stats are great, but I would love to hear more about where you recommend spending money and what your ROI was. Thanks! Keep up the good work.

    • Thanks for the feedback, I really appreciate it.

      I will create a follow up post in the future with the nuggets and data. 😉

  22. Spending on marketing as investment through social media presence & engagement is there of course. But as an advertiser, all platforms are so different. Twitter is very expensive media for starting ads. Pinterest doesn’t allow direct advertising yet. LinkedIn ads are more useful for recruiting & B2B than to customers. So only way for most business is Facebook Ads.

    • Thanks for your added input Roshan, it is true that some social sites won’t work as well for your business as it will for others.

  23. This was a very interesting breakdown of social media advertising. It’s amazing to see how long people spend on the different media sites. Have you noticed a difference in ROI vs time spent on the social media site?

  24. Hey Neil, Nice info-graphic!

    My ROI on Facebook (both post promotion and re-marketing) is an average of 34% and on Pinterest is -5.6%!! I just posted about this on my blog.

  25. What about LinkedIn?
    I read your previous post (two weeks back, I guess) that you tried on LinkedIn and Facebook. The quality of leads generated with LinkedIn is more best. So what do you suggest, FB or LinkedIn?


  26. Though I wasn’t sure why, I always divided my budget in the similar order. Doesn’t take an analyst to tell you that Facebook has the biggest potential.

  27. Scott @ TwitterHQ :

    Hi Neil,

    Thanks for the awesome graphic and detailed breakdown. I have done a lot with Twitter and seen success, but not as much with Facebook or Pinterest. Everything I have read is talking about solid growth in these areas in 2013.


  28. Virgil @ CrazyCTR :

    Great post Neil, looking forward for a case study.

    Also, if you are doing facebook, you can give a try to my tool (let me know and I’ll give you a free account). It works by tweaking your ad image to stand out(and getting a higher CTR > lower CPC) by applying different effects.

  29. Facebook is still the king.

  30. Steven Neubarth :

    Here’s the BIG question. What landing page do you use for your social media ads. Do you take searchers away from facebook and to your site or to a custom landing page or keep them on your facebook page. Same question for LinkedIn do you direct to a LinkedIn profile/page or offsite?

  31. wow, that’s a lot of investment you put there Neil, interesting 🙂
    so how it goes?

  32. Hey,
    Excellent post. I think Facebook is king because Facebook has more users and if they have more users then it means that they can get more and more traffic and they can show ads to more users in whole world.
    Thank you for excellent post.

  33. Charlotte Varela :

    Although Facebook is generally more popular, I don’t think there should be any set rule for which social network gives the best value for money, but rather which platform is better for you and is the preferred network of your customers. Going to where they hang out, whether you like the social network or not, is how you’re going to capture the most potential leads.

  34. nice info…good things to hear that social page like facebook get less unique link than other social media….just not very like facebook…by the way…got some tips how to promote the web by using the pinterest….

  35. Thomas S. Moore :

    From people I talk to seems like Linkedin is more targeted/converting traffic though is seems everyone wants to get MORE traffic. Nice infographic Neil, shared it on my blog!

  36. hi neil,

    some really interesting advice here, can i ask if you still invest in adwords aswell as the social media advertising , and if so is that higher than the social media budget ?

  37. Left my comment on your Facebook page because, I’ve noticed, you’re not approving all comments, especially negative ones.

    • I have no problem with negative comments, I like to have feedback so I can improve. The only comments that aren’t approved are consider spam by either myself or automatically by WP. I will check for your comment on FB and respond.

  38. I think it will be interesting to see if Google implements some sort of paid promotion for Google+.

  39. Social media sites converts a decent amount of traffic. At times I think it takes as much work as seo.

  40. This is a very informative post. I find it extremely useful. Nice to see this particular stats and data knowing each social network platform has its own pros and cons.

  41. For our LinkedIn do you send the people to your site or they ask you to contact them with the lead option (not sure what it’s called)?

  42. Social Media must be updated daily, if then only it may drive traffic to the website

  43. Website Buddha :

    Have you tried good ole fashion Google? Facebook used to be so easy a few years ago. Now it take a lot of testing and a sizeable budget.

  44. I just came across this “skitch” to build infographic, as your one seems to be great so wanted to ask is “skitch” also good, which tool have you used for infographics?

  45. maria@Bitmantra :

    That’s really cool infographics Neil..I would surely keep your experiences in mind while spending money on sites mentioned by you. Also looking forward to see case studies.

  46. I just love the infographic. It makes the numbers so much more clear for me. The click through rates were the most shocking epiphany for me. Thank you

  47. Great guide, Neil.

    But i have one question on my mind. I am working in web design company, i have to know about the should social media sites are helpful in web industry or not ?

  48. Facebook drives most the traffic to my website so i spend all of my marketing budget on Facebook advertising.

  49. I find twitter to be a great platform for getting traffic, And Facebook well there is no comparision to it..!

  50. Software Testing :

    Wow. Thats really an interesting breakup. I was really stunned to see that you are spending a whooping 1500$/month on facebook and other social media.

  51. Hi Neil ! You have a excellent SEO stratety. Your experiment on social media campaign to protmote your site is really a interesting topics for case study. I would love social media site and it’s easy & quick to reach toward billions of social communities. Facebook, twitter are quite good to achieve campaign goals. Small publishers can get reach in right position through social media. Thank you for your best share.

  52. Facebook is still a best social networking site to promote business. I did promotion on Facebook and linkedin but i got very good response from facebook.

    After reading this article with info-graphics i am going to try Pinterest 🙂

  53. Very nice blog. Facebook gives enough exposure to the small businesses that is really an advantage for them to grow. Many business are trying to use social media effectively. In fact, social media is being used by many SEOrs before to promote brand or a business even better.

  54. I work with small businesses on their web presence and the most important page to any small business is their google plus place page. It’s the key to coming up in local organic search results and all of my clients know this and value it much more than any facebook or twitter account.

    I am finding that Pinterest can have a great impact on small to large sized businesses in creating more brand awareness and engagement to core target markets that are found on Pinterest. Does every business need to be on Pinterest? Maybe not, but every marketing plan needs to include some cross-section of social media platforms that make sense.

  55. david-gfe-games :

    Hard to ignore Social Media. But its also hard to measure accurately unless you have some pretty neat spy gear, which I don’t.

  56. I can’t even think for spending 15000 dollars, such a big amount but like to hear that it works for you.. 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  57. I spend some money on twitter but it was pure wastage of it.What was your experience with twitter ?

  58. I find it hard to keep up with all social media, right now im only using facebook and twitter. I’ve got a pinterest account but rarely use it.

  59. I completely understand the fact that the use of social websites is mandatory in order to get traffic. Personally, I am using Facebook between the ones you have mentioned above. But the question that I have in my mind is the following: at which moment should someone begin to invest in advertising: once his own website has already acquired a certain amount of users or directly from the beginning?

  60. Your post are as usual very unique, excellent and has insightful information for all of us. I always overlooked link building strategy with images. Info graphic you used in this post is quite interesting. I never gave that weight age to it. But after reading your post I realized how I can use it in a better way.

  61. Good stuff Neil! I think the emphasis is testing, testing, testing based on someone else testing. It’s the life blood of any business. Your info is rock solid, but I would caution my fellow readers and posters from becoming info-sponges that never get squeezed. Don’t get scared off from trying any of these methods. These are Neil’s results based on his chosen market(s) Whether it’s paid or free traffic, you have to put effort and action to find out what works for you. I’m a fan of free, but it can take more time than I want sometimes. But noone can deny the speed of paid traffic.

  62. Prashant Rohilla :

    Great Infographic Neil, talking about different types of business, basic test metrics any one can consider is Targeted audience vs ROI, let us consider if a business is getting more returns from XYZ social media that’s means its going right, but that may not be the case for ABC social media. Most of the people do mistake when they try to generalize their marketing strategies across different Social media networks

  63. After reading your post I realized how I can use it in a better way.

  64. :

    well, I usually spend my money on Facebook and twitter. I like the way when i get targeted fans. Both of them are good. 🙂
    Thank you

  65. Hello!,,,,,,

    Hi!,,,,,,nice info…good things to hear that social page like facebook get less unique link than other social media….just not very like facebook…

    Thank you so much!,,,,,,,

  66. who buys used cars :

    Excellent post indeed. I think that marketing budget should be spend on Facebook because it gives a lot of options to target your audience. Pinterest have only users who are young while Facebook have all kind of users.

  67. It’s awesome to see the side by side comparison on the infographic. I saved it to read every day as I build out a social media presence for a few sites I have. Great graphics too.

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