In the ever-changing digital landscape, keeping a hold on trends can mean the difference between becoming a real player or your brand vanishing into obscurity. Since the beginning of 2016 developments in app functionality and content capabilities has led to an even-more contested market, with networks vying for the business of big brands, and big brands battling it out to get their content noticed over that of their competitors…
Today’s top social media trends paint a wonderfully diverse picture for the future of social networking for users. With such a huge (seriously, huge) amount of businesses and organisations now actively engaging in social media marketing, it has become even more of a challenge to take advantage of all that it offers. A renewed appreciation and understanding for what makes users tick has led to more investment into the creation of quality, original content and better community management, to the point where both of these things have almost grown to be expected by users.
In short, social media marketing is not “easy” any more, but the potential offered by today’s industry completely eclipses what could be achieved two or three years ago. There are now even more viable avenues for reaching your audience, even more ways to tell rich stories about your brand, even more possibilities to prompt real discussions and foster relationships with real consumers and turn them into advocates.
Let’s take a look at some of the biggest social media trends this summer…
Instagram and Snapchat making inroads as social networks
One of the most significant areas for development has been the sites themselves. Smaller apps and networks which never gained much appreciation and were never particularly looked at as a viable channel for marketing in the past have made serious inroads in the social media game. Last year it was simple to direct your attention to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn in an order dictated by your target market, but at least two others have joined ranks the ranks of “to be considered”. Instagram and Snapchat each serve a separate purpose, allowing marketers to reach a more diverse cross section of users.
Video content retains its prominence, live gets serious
Video content continues to be the most engaged-with type of content across social media. It’s unsurprising when you consider how accessible a medium it is, and that fact that it requires minimal investment by users for a potentially engaging outcome. Now the live-streaming capabilities of networks have grown immensely and brands have cottoned-on. Facebook Live and Periscope have given organisations an opportunity to offer customers access to unique and exclusive stories.
Human response is more important now than ever
Social media community management is now an industry norm. Users have very high expectations surrounding how responsive business representatives should be on these channels and the extent of customer service they should offer. While Facebook has started to look towards bots for business queries on messenger, users need to feel engaged with on a human level in order to trust and advocate a brand.
Quality, original content topples quantity
It almost goes without saying that quality tops quantity when it comes to social media content, and that has never been more true than it is now. Business users who invest in creating the highest quality original content and spend time carefully crafting everything they post on their channels are the ones who succeed. Frequently posting the same message or promoting products systematically disengages consumers and is detrimental to brands on social media.