Interested in what social media trends are on the horizon for 2017? Here’s what the CONRIC digital team is excited about!
1. Live video as a key part of branding
Facebook Live, Instagram Story, and Twitter Live are all trending platforms brands can utilize for live videos and stream events. This way followers can stay engaged with brands by getting a glimpse into the event in case they aren’t able to be there in person. Live video can be used for customer service by hosting Q&A sessions and product demonstrations. As a key tool to drive engagement, hosts can ask for comments, questions, and feedback from the viewers. Brands can also stream multiple videos in a series, providing even more opportunities for engagement and two-way communication.
Ephemeral, or disappearing, content is another clever way to feature a brand’s authenticity and personality, by creating a unique opportunity for brands to show their “flaws” or “unpolishedness.” This can include behind-the-scenes looks and “takeovers,” when a different user chooses what content to share.
2. Social media e-commerce will drive sales
Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest offer a variety of ways for users to purchase products directly within their apps, making it easier and simpler for brands to increase sales. While users typically use social media to interact with one another, a “buy now” call-to-action on a brand’s social media pages easily encourages online shopping. The call-to-action button also entices users to share information about their favorite products and share them with their friends.
Another tool brands should use to increase sales through social media is the use of “messengers.” As a scalable and cost effective tool for business, social media messaging can provide a better experience for customer brands and can quickly solve customers’ problems
3. The shift from Snapchat to Instagram stories
With more than 600 million users, Instagram’s newest feature is topping Snapchat’s 150 million users and creating more engaging stories. Owned by Facebook, Instagram is able to advertise and target their audiences based on both Facebook and Instagram insights. Instagram also lets users publish images, videos, and ephemeral stories into a permanent portfolio or album. This creates an easier medium for users to share content with their friends and family members.
In comparison, Snapchat offers fewer means of measurement and analysis for social media marketers and accurate SEO. Snapchat photos and videos also immediately disappear after 24 hours with no option to save them in an album to view later on. However, Snapchat can still be useful for geofilter and other unique social media marketing tools
4. Mobile advertising: survival of the most dollars invested
In 2017, social media marketers should expect greater investments in mobile advertisement to better engage and communicate with their target audience. Facebook alone brought in more than $7 billion last year, with 80% coming from mobile ads. With the adaption of its newest algorithm, Facebook’s News Feed now prioritizes content from friends and family first. In turn, 75% of brands on Facebook that pay to promote ads will need to have creative ads that are digitally engaging in order to get the most reach.
While Twitter’s revenue is increasing in mobile format, 2017 will be their year for experimentation with visual content. Sponsored hashtag icons and stickers will provide a variety of ad options to users.
Snapchat and Instagram will be competing for engagement and users. Snapchat recently launched a new advertising tool that makes it easier for marketers to buy space; they also created more video ads and sponsored filters for national events like the NFL Super Bowl and NBA All-Star Game. On the other hand, Instagram introduced “Shoppable Instagram,” which lets users buy products with just one click of a CTA through the app.
5. Virtual reality will find its way into more marketing experiences
As a newer marketing tool, the use of virtual reality will become increasingly popular in the next year. Brands are beginning to understand the value of encouraging engagement by offering a captivation experience unlike any other. Although the experience is improved when using a VR headset or view, the video is still viewable on a mobile device, iPad or tablet, effectively sharing a brand’s story.
Overall, it is important for marketers to experiment with live video, social media e-commerce, and mobile advertising through different platforms. This will enable them to see which platforms performs better with their intended audience, and which gain the most engagement with the new features each outlet offers. For more tips check out this article from HubSpot.