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– Written by Ellen McConnell, Yana Lesyk – August 4, 2023

TDC Dispatch: How to get the most out of social media platforms

A quick break down of 11 of the most popular social media platforms - what each is best for and how to navigate them.

The social media landscape has been somewhat changing in the recent months and we want to break down some of the most popular ones on the market to shed light on how they work and what they are for.


When seeking connections (or secondhand furniture), Facebook caters to a diverse user base, comprising over 2 billion daily individuals worldwide. Some are drawn to Facebook Marketplace, a place to buy and sell items, and others seek a sense of community, engaging with photo updates from family gatherings or joining online groups tailored to different interests.


The platform is a place for people to connect with people. Users post career updates, share news, network and for some – share insights and opinions on trending topics. There is a rise in thought-leaders, and creators on LinkedIn, covering motivational, inspirational and educational topics.


TikTok has evolved beyond being solely a platform for dancing teenagers. It now caters to a wide audience seeking entertainment, as people continue to indulge in endless scrolling to find amusement on the short-form video app. TikTok covers diverse subjects ranging from news updates and book suggestions to humour-filled content and “get ready with me” makeup tutorials. 


Threads looks a lot like Twitter, with a text-based feed where people can have real-time conversations. The app attracted a stunning 100 million sign ups within a week of its launch, although usage has slowed down 70% since. But unlike Twitter, Threads says it doesn’t plan to lean heavily into news content.


Instagram started as a fun photo-sharing app but over the years the content on the platform transformed. The culture within Instagram might be inspirational, but the overly-idealistic version of reality raises concerns about the app’s impact on users’ mental health.


Pinterest serves as a go-to source for inspiration, allowing users to effortlessly explore and categorise visually captivating ideas spanning various creative realms. Recently, the platform has introduced new functionalities that enable users to make direct purchases from their feeds, enhancing the overall shopping experience.


Reddit is one of the few remaining social platforms that still feels like the good old days of social media. The platform offers a plethora of topics users can lose themselves in. Its communities are self-managed, relying on volunteer users to make forum-specific rules and to moderate content.


YouTube remains the pioneer of video-based social networks, offering a vast array of content for viewers to indulge in. Over the years, it has delivered internet sensations like “Charlie Bit My Finger” and “Keyboard Cat”, while also propelling numerous influencers to fame. Its latest evolution, YouTube Shorts, takes on TikTok with short-form video.


Discord is a free text, voice and video chat service most known for its popularity within the video games community. The platform now hosts community forums for a variety of niche subjects.


For years, Twitter was a central hub for real-time news. But the platform has been upended since Elon Musk’s takeover in October. He has made a series of controversial changes and policy decisions that have left many users and advertisers seeking alternative platforms.


Snapchat is generally known as a platform most popular within young people to exchange quick, real-time photos or messages that disappear. Although the way the platform functions allows users to step back from creating an online persona, lawmakers have raised concerns about the safety for young people of an app where content disappears.

For more information on how to get the most out of social media message [email protected]!