MAU: 321 Million
Twitter is a fast-paced social media network where users interact by way of “Tweets”. Tweets are short concise sentences that convey your message. You can also add in links to advertise a product or service.
Due to the character limit restriction (currently 280 characters for all users accept from Chinese language users) – links used on Twitter should be shortened to conserve space by way of a tool like bitly.
Often used to convey news or important information by authorities and schools – as well as casual users, Twitter can be a great way to connect, convey information and share.
MAU: 4.6 Million – Monthly active streamers
Niche: Video streaming network
Owned by Amazon – Twitch is a live video streaming service. However it is extremely social – hence I added it to this list. Twitch streamers live and breathe Twitch.
Channels span cookery programs to a wide range of professional gamers sharing their gameplay. Viewers can interact with the community on the chat, subscribe to a streamer and even chat with the streamer while they are broadcasting.
Twitch currently has 2.2 million broadcasters for you to choose from and is popularly known as the Gamers Social Network.
A favourite among male millennials – Twitch is a great place to advertise if your target demographic is a 19-40 year old male video game enthusiast.
MAU: 694.1 million
QQ is an instant messaging service owned by Chinese tech giant Tencent. QQ is a feature rich messaging service that even has its own currency “QQ Coin” that can be used to acquire in app items. QQ has a built in translator, gaming features and allows video messaging. Originally created solely for Chinese users, QQ is now popular worldwide.
MAU: 1 billion
WeChat is an instant messenger app much like FB Messenger or WhatsApp – created by Tencent in China. WeChat can be used for all of the normal messenger features like video chat, text and image sharing. Additionally WeChat can be used for making mobile purchases.
MAU: 600 million
Niche: Social Network
QZone is another Chinese social network owned by Tencent. The website is written in Madarin (Chinese) and specifically designed for Chinese speaking smart phone users. To download QZone you can visit the QZone subdomain of the QQ website.
Tencent is worth $237.8 billion and is a big player in the tech sphere. Their social networks and Instant Messengers seem to be all geared in the direction of QQ. In the past they have run other networks like Pengyou and Xaioyou.
MAU: 30-50 million (approx)
Niche: Micro Blogging
Tumblr is a highly customizable micro blogging platform owned by Yahoo. Users can create blogs, make them private or share them with the Tumblr community. Tumblr is part social network and part blogging site, a bit like blogger or wordpress with a community feature.
Users love the fact that Tumblr is highly customizable and freeform.
MAU: 250+ Million
Niche: Image Sharing (Memes)
Founded in California a decade ago – Imgur is a popular image sharing network – ranked No.15 in the US by Alexa. The gifs, videos and images on Imgur are always up to date and great fun. Imgur is known as the:
Easiest way to discover and enjoy the magic of the Internet
In essence, Imgur is basically a long list of fresh memes and gifs. Users visit Imgur daily to lift their spirits and get entertained. A light hearted social media platform that is quite addictive.
The images on Imgur are publicly displayed on the homepage and users can jump on and lift their spirits with some funny memes, whenever they feel the need.
MAU: 1 billion+
Niche: Image Sharing (lifestyle)
Originally created for iPhone as an image sharing platform, Instagram is now cross platform and owned by Facebook. The idea is that you capture moments from your life and turn the images into an artwork. Instagram has a great deal of filters thaht you can apply to your image, or you can take a quick “boomerang” video.
Instagram now has a popular “stories” feature much like Snapchat – where you can view a stream of snippets about people’s lives. This is a popular advertising channel as the advertisements are really easy to insert into stories. When you want to learn more you can simply swipe up and view more information on that advertisement.
MAU: 111 Million
Niche: Social Network (Closing in 2019)
Google Plus is still a thing (for a few more months). Google plus is a social media networking platform created by Google. It’s USP is the “circles” feature where you can create circles of people that have similar interests.
The platform has all of the hallmarks of a successful social media platform – video sharing, photo sharing, messages and promotion. Additionally it integrates well with other google services like “Hangouts”, “Gmail” and the entire G-Suite.
However, due to a lack of uptake, Google Plus will be shutting up shop in August 2019. Some cite the data exposure scandal as the reason for Google Plus closing. However you look at it, users are dropping off in the millions and Google Plus is not a network to focus your energy on in 2019,
MAU: 665 million
Niche: Social Network
Baidu is known as the “Google of China” and Baidu Tieba is their online social media platform. Baidu Tieba was founded in 2003 and is now the largest online communication platform in China.
MAU: 1.5 Billion
Second only to WhatsApp, (in active users) Facebook’s direct messaging tool can be used online or downloaded as an app on your phone. FB Messenger is increasingly being used by businesses to automate their messages and build relationships – mainly for group and educational purposes.
FB Messenger can also be used to create chat groups, which is especially useful if you are arranging a gathering with a group of friends/ colleagues.
MAU: 300 Million
Ranked as the 16th most popular social network (by number of users) – Skype is a longstanding and popular messaging platform. Used to make free voice, text and video calls,
Skype is a great tool to use to connect with people all around the world. It is also possible to set up a conference call and purchase landlines that can be used with Skype.
MAU: 260 Million
Viber is owned by a Japanese company Rakuten. Viber say that one of the most important missions of the company is to provide a “secure chat network”. They don’t store, share or read any of your messages, plus they use end-to-end encryption to keep chats 100% private.
If you chose their “secret chats” feature then your message will self-destruct after the other person reads them. With Viber Secret Chats you can’t go back and read the messages later, meaning you can be completely authentic with their secret chats feature.
Viber can be used to send private messages, videos, images and stickers to your friends, family and co-workers. Their app translates into 30 different languages and works on all devices. You can even call people out with the Viber network.
MAU: 260 million
Niche: Professional Social Network
LinkedIn is a business and employment social media network where you can connect with prospective clients and employers worldwide. The Linkedin site is a fantastic 24/7 global professional networking platform. Seamlessly connect with groups, chat with members, post/ share/ like/ comment articles as well as join professional groups to learn and share your expertise.
MAU: 250 million
Niche: Discovery platform
Pinterest is an fantastic search based discovery platform that allows you to save relevant “pins”. Think of Pinterest as an array of virtual pin boards that you can use to attach your ideas to. The majority of Pinterest users are women who use Pinterest to share ideas, gather recipes and look for the latest lifestyle tips.
Pinterest is a great planning tool, where you can share ideas with others in your network related to an event (like a wedding or baby shower). You can follow users or individual boards that are of interest to you. Creating boards is easy and takes seconds, making it a great place to grow your ideas.
MAU: 445 million
Niche: Social Network
One of the most popular social networks in China – Sina Weibo is ranked no.16 in the world by Alexa.
Weibo” (微博) is the Chinese word for “microblog
Sina Weibo has steadily grown into one of Chinas most prominent social media platforms. Sina Weibo is currently worth over $30 billion USD. Members can share short blogs and use a wide range of features comparable to Facebook or Tumblr.
MAU: 78 Million
Niche: Social Network
“Line” is Japan’s largest social network – designed to provide a free messaging solution to their international users. Although created to be an instant messenger solution, Line has grown into a massive Japanese social media platform.
Line’s success has been explosive, they launched in 2011 and quickly attracted 100 million users (within 18 months). Now 8 years on they boast over 700 Million users.
MAU: 300 Million
Niche: Community Lead Q&A
Quora is a Californian based website with an international presence. Quora is an online space to get expert advice. Additionally, you can establish yourself as a thought-leader in your niche by answering questions on Quora. Unlike other platforms you can get some great advice from experts, however as always the advice is only as good as the person answering them. There are certainly some really silly questions and people wasting time answering them such as:
Do you like dipping your potato chips in ketchup?
However, there are some great feeds and people you can hook up with, like this example:
How do hackers know when they have been caught (I’m writing a scene for a novel)?
Quora personalises your feed according to your interests and uses AI to target advertisements to your likes and dislikes. To find out if a post is reliable on Quora, check how many up votes it has.
MAU: 73 Million
Niche: Search & crowd-sourced review forum
Often not strictly thought of as a social platform – Yelp does have some neat social features. You can share pictures of you at the location, write reviews on places you have visited and even view activities of friends.
MAU: 22 Million (approx.)
Niche: Local-search service & social media network
Nextdoor is a social network platform designed to share information in Neighbourhoods. Typical uses include asking for local service provider recommendations, Members provide their real name and create neighbourhoods with a mimimum of 10 members per neighbourhood.
An interesting fact about Nextdoor is that it has reported an increase in use during natural disasters.
People can connect to discuss local issues or even create non-geographic “neighbourhoods” with set rules. Nextdoor is particularily useful for finding out local information and urgent warnings (like severe weather warnings).
Niche: Video streaming social media network
YY is much like Twitch but for the Chinese market (and less focus on gaming – maybe). YY is a massive video streaming based social network designed to share live video. Much like Twitch streamers share what they are doing, this could be an educational video, cookery, dating related or a social game.
Streamers earn real money on YY by converting the online currency that they earn to cash.
MAU: 81 Million (approx.)
Niche: Social media network
VKontakte or VK is a massive Russian social network. To give you an idea of the scale of this network you only have to check out their Alexa ranking. VK.com is No.2 out of all of the websites in Russia and No.11 internationally. VK is similar to Facebook however it is predominantly used by Russian speakers.
MAU: 200 Million
Telegram is an invite based messenger app. They don’t advertise their service and pride themselves in providing a private and secure instant messaging solution. They go by the motto:
everyone on this planet has a right to be free
Offering end-to-end encryption and a safe place to chat is at the heart of what Telegram do. They don’t disclose your data with third party marketers or external agencies.
Although Telegram don’t disclose data, I need to point out here that they are based in Europe. This means – if they are pushed to disclose information by the government agencies then they would have to do so by law.
MAU: 330 Million
Niche: Forum Based Social Network
Reddit is a wildly popular social media network that is based around the idea of a massive forum where people discuss ideas and ask questions. Much like Quora you can up-vote relevant answers. People can set up subredits – which is basically your own small forum within their platform.
Reddit is now the No.4 site in the US according to Alexa. Reddit is now the third most popular social network in the world after Facebook and Twitter. Want’ to promote your brand? Join the discussion over at Reddit for maximum exposure.
MAU: 15 million
Niche: Music social media network
OMG!! One of the golden oldies that is still around – Myspace was THE social network before Facebook took off. In fact it is noted that Myspace was the no.1 social media network from 2005-2009. Founded in 2003 and still going strong – Myspace is primarily a social media network for musicians.
MAU: 75 million
Niche: Latin America social media network
Argentina’s answer to Facebook – Taringa is one of the largest Latin American social media networks. The site is targeted at Spanish speaking countries like its Argentina, Spain, Colombia, Chile, Peru and the US Spanish speaking community.
Taringa is a place to share ideas in the Spanish speaking areas of the world.
MAU: 50 million
Niche: Local Discovery Platform
Foursquare is designed to share information on events happening at a specific location. This is particularly useful for large events like festivals .
Foursquare have recently launched additional insights reporting and tools for their advertisers called “self-service audience segments” to help them reach the correct demographic. Brining Foursquare to light for many internet marketers.
MAU: 257 million (approx.)
Niche: Social Media Platform
RenRen is one of the largest social media networks in China. It offers similar features to Facebook – including the ability to live stream. Renren was created by Renren Inc, formerly known as Xiaonei Network and part of their SaaS, Social network and automobile offerings.
However at the end of 2018 Renren.com (their social media department) was sold for $20 million to Beijing Infinities Interactive Media.
MAU: 12 million (approx.)
Niche: Meet People
Unlike other social networks, where you are expected to know the people you “friend” – Tagged is a place for meeting new people. Tagged is owned by If(we) Inc, who run several mobile apps and services designed to help their members meet people and make meaningful connections.
MAU: 35 million (approx.)
Language: Global/ 47 Languages
Badoo is the world’s most widely used dating social network. Badoo has offices in Europe, UK, Russia and the US. They run a thoroughly global operation – serving 190 countries and a massive 47 languages. With over 345 million worldwide international users, you are sure to find that someone special (if you are looking) on Badoo.
MAU: 300k (approx.)
Niche: Community Lead Q&A
Similar in nature to Quora or Reddit, ProductHunt is a social network designed to help you discover the latest mobile apps, websites, and technology products. You can upvote and comment on posts created by users. Find niche products and how real people feel about them – like Hybrid headphones for quad drivers or the latest and greatest VPN service.
Niche: Discovery Platform
Using sophisticated social media principles, StumbleUpon curates website content that it finds and decides is relevant to you. Founded in 2007 – StumbleUpon quickly gathered 25 million users. Obviously a great tool for advertisers too – due to the nature of the platform. Discover content that is designed to suit you that you might not find anywhere else on StumbleUpon.
Niche: Creative Network
The Dots is a fabulous social media platform that enables the creative process to be more open source. Founded in London just 5 short years ago – The Dots is a great hub for artists and creators. Get feedback on your creative endeavours and find new ways to develop your ideas with your community on “The Dots”.
Niche: Young Adults
Aimed at young adults “Kiwibox” is a social media network and online magazine designed to offer tips and advice to teens. Based in New York, Kiwibox allows their young users to share their skills and connect with like minded people.
MAU: 21 Million (approx.)
Niche: Social media platform
Based out of France – Skyrock is a French social media platform. The platform allows only registered users to access content and provides a free webspace to share ideas, create blog posts and share images online.
Although created for the French speaking world – Skyrock has 14 language versions and is a very popular social network internationally.
Niche: Social Bookmarking
Founded in 2003 Del.icio.us is now known as:
The King of Social Bookmarking
Delicious allows you to share and store memorable website URLs in a centralized location. You can also make these bookmarks public to discuss with others. How many times have you come across some interesting content and then not been able to get back to that site at a later date?
… Delicious is designed to solve that problem – and more.
Flickr is a massive photo sharing social media platform with tens of billions of photos and 2 million groups. Share and organise your photos in a way that is meaningful for you with Flickr.
Another great place for musicians to find like minded friends and promote their work is ReverbNation. This social media platform has a tonne of great tools for musicians.
Share movie reviews and ratings with like minded fans on Flixster. If you love movies then Flixster is the social network for you. Join along in the discussion about the latest movies and discover new releases before everyone else.
Looking for a social network filled with investors to share your new idea with? Look no further than AngelList.
Connect with activists that share your passion. This social media site helps activists connect around the globe with similar concerns.
MAU: 75 Million
Niche: Mothers/ parents
Becoming a mom can be quite overwhelming, especially if you don’t have close family to help you on your journey (heck even if you do, it is a steep learning curve). CafeMom is designed to offer a supportive community for moms on all aspects of pregnancy and childbirth. Get expert advice from other parents who have been there and done that – allowing new parents to make more informed choices.
With over 15+ million backers (and counting)
Niche: Crowd funding
Kickstarter is the place to get your new project funded. Due to the nature of their platform the MAU (Monthly Active User) count is not the best way to measure it’s success.
Kickstarter has helped successfully fund over $4 billion USD of projects and is a great place for creative to get their projects crowd sourced, plus meet investors and supporters of their work.
MAU: 1 Million
Niche: Knit & Crochet Social Network
Ravelry is a thriving community of knitters, weavers and crochet lovers. Their 8million + members share their ideas, collaborate and get help from other fibre artists.
Ravelry “a knit and crochet community” is a great place to share patterns. One really cool fact about Ravelry is that hobbyists can learn how to turn what they love into a money making venture with the help and inspiration of fellow members.
MAU: Unknown – however there are 480,000 Gab users in total
A bit of a dodgy entry – but maybe it is up your street, who knows? Gab is a far-right Neo-Nazi social media platform for English speaking white supremacists. It is billed as an alternative to Twitter and a place to be heard in small bite sized pieces of content (3000 characters or less) known as “Gabs”.
If you think that nobody would be interested in a far-right social media network, think again. Gab has received $5.8 million in Crowd Funding.
For those who love travel and lifestyle content – Wayn could be the perfect social network. Discover new places to go and meet new friends to share your journeys with. Back in 2009 Wayn boasted 6.5m unique users a month and now it is just over 100,000 so perhaps Wayn is on its way out? We will have to keep an eye out for how they progress going forward.
Another social network for gamers on the go is – Cellufun. Members of Cellufun can play games, share experiences and buy in app purchase digital goods.
There is no data on monthly active users on Cellufun – however IMO the site looks outdated and the news surrounding their company seemed to run dry back in around 2009.
MAU: 1.8 billion users (every month)
Niche: Video Streaming Network
YouTube is arguably the best video streaming service around – they are certainly the largest!
Youtube is a great place to share, learn and grow, or simply be entertained. You can meet new people that have similar interests, send them dm’s and subscribe to your favourite channels for free.
The only downside to Youtube is the adverts (oh, and the fact that it is super addictive!). However, Youtube have you covered, they now offer an advert free solution.
If you are looking for a place to watch and share short videos then Vine is the perfect social network.
Upload your yearbook and find old classmates with the aptly named “Classmates” social network. Classmates allows you to reunite with old friends and keep in touch long after you finish school or college.
MyHeritage is an interesting social media platform to discover your family tree and and ancestors. Inside this platform you can create family trees and upload family photos.
Viadeo is a professional social network similar to Linkedin, designed to help businesses connect.
Xing is a professional social network targeted at professionals in Switzerland, Austria and Germany. A bit like Slack in the sense you can start a closed company group discussion and collaborate via Xing.
Xanga is a social media network that revolves around blogging.
Meetme is targeted at young people who want to meet friends. Meetme used to be called “Myyearbook” and is designed for students to meet new people.
If you are on the go or simply want to keep your journal/diary safe, then LiveJournal is a neat social networking site.
Friendster is a social network designed for gamers in Asia.
Funny or Die brings together all of the funniest videos on the internet. Watch some hilarious videos and share/ rate your favourites.
Find like-minded friends that live nearby and arrange a gathering. Or join in with other meetup events that spark your interest.
Tout is a video sharing platform where you can share short videos that are up to 15 seconds long. On Tout, your videos are known as “Touts”.
MAU: 20 Million
Niche: Social Media Network
Mixi is a large social media network based in Japan. Ideal for Japanese speakers.
Douban is a Chinese social media platform.
If you are looking for a social media network that doesn’t log, resell or want to make money from your activity, then Vero is well worth a look.
Spreely is a play on the words Speak and Freely. Spreely as you might have guessed is all about being able to speak freely without fear of being banned from the network.
MAU: 24,000 (approx.)
Niche: Social bookmarking website
Similar to early versions of Delicious – Pinboard is a simple social bookmarking website. The site is subscription based and was actually acquired by Delicious in 2016, You can use Pinboard and be free from advertisements. Bookmarks are organised by tags in simple clutter-free user interface.
MAU: 2.88 million
Launched in 2011 but growing fast – Twoo is a place to meet new people. With Twoo you can make your profile and use their platform for free. However, if you want to be able to browse anonymously and check who has been looking at your profile then you will need to upgrade to their paid membership option.
Girlsaskguys.com (or GAG for short) is a social media network that was created to close the gender divide. Girls and guys can ask each other questions about the opposite sex or any other aspect of life, and glean the perspective of the opposite sex.
Members don’t need to use their own name – therefore allowing them to ask questions quite anonymously. They raised $1 million in their startup phase back in 2013 – however there is very little information on the actual statistics of GirlsAskGuys to date.