Social media has evolved into one of the most effective marketing channels to specifically target audiences with business news, product developments, etc. It’s not enough to simply use social media platforms – marketers must have their thumb on the pulse of these platforms to truly take full advantage of their value. As the landscape of social media constantly progresses, it is the job of marketing professionals to stay ahead of the curve by aligning new features and developments with their clients’ overall business objectives.
2019 is no exception to social media changes. Here are five trends predicted for this year that you won’t want to ignore:
1. The increase of videos, stories and ephemeral content
Ephemeral content is predicted to take over regular posting in 2019. People are spending more time watching stories rather than spending time examining and scrolling through regular posts.
“In the moment” content will win over highly-produced content in 2019. Led by millennials and generation Z, consumers are more likely to make a purchase decision based on the authenticity of a company’s social media presence. So, what does this mean for your social media strategy? Use your platforms to tell the story behind your brand. It is time to focus on the people, personalities and the vulnerable side of it as well. Use short-lived content to connect with your audience and show them the “human” behind the operation. For example, if you are an apartment complex posting on social media, take your audience behind the scenes, you could take your followers on a tour or show what your office does on daily basis.
2. Adding value to the content you share
Leave the fluff for your stories. When posting long-lasting content, be mindful of people’s time and don’t post without adding value. It is obvious we want to be sharing original, thoughtful content that pulls our audience in, but how do we achieve that? Your posts should ultimately be helping your consumer make a purchase decision by helping them solve a problem and in a timely manner. A recent poll shows that 78 percent of people said they will base their purchase intent on personally relevant social media content.
Keep this in mind for 2019 when posting for your company. Think about how your product or service is solving a problem for your customers and capitalize on that idea. What do they want to know and how can you give them that information in an intriguing way?
3. AI and how it will maximize customer experience
From chatbots to ad optimization, a lot of companies are beginning to integrate Artificial Intelligence into their online presence – and it’s growing exponentially. Social media experts predict that 80 percent of customer interaction will be with AI bots. AI is helping better your level of online customer service. ChatBots are completely customizable for customer interaction. You can connect them directly where they want to go, answer FAQ’s and better your chances for a purchase decision. They can be 24-hour, so you have no limitations on when you can help your customers.
Brindle has implemented AI for a few of our clients and it has proven to be very useful. For example, for an apartment complex, if someone visits their Facebook page, a ChatBot appears and initiates a conversation. The bot (which also has a live person chat) can answer any questions based on what it has been customized to respond to. If it doesn’t know certain questions/answers it can direct them additional help articles or a live person can take over the conversation.
4. Tailored and purposeful social media ads
Social media ads are evolving. In 2018 alone, marketers increased budgets for social media ads by 32 percent, Facebook accounted for 23 percent of all digital ad spending in the U.S., and 1 in 4 pages on Facebook used paid advertising. With so many competitors fighting for attention, social media advertising requires more thought, high-quality content and very targeted, personalized ads.
In order for your ads to be successful, you need to get to know your audience, tailor your ads to that audience, define your goals and invest in high-quality content.
In 2019, repurpose top-performing content and be willing to adjust to new ad trends and formats. Focus on giving your audience high quality, compelling, entertaining ads.
5. Co-branding social media campaigns
Creating meaningful partnerships with relevant brands on social media is a valuable way to tap into new audiences and increase business reach. While the overarching concept is certainly nothing new, 2019 will see a rise in these partnerships on social media via both large-scale and small-scale brands.
Showcasing this partnership on social media allows businesses to speak to partners’ followers who ordinarily may not have been easily accessed. Growing your fan base in this way translates to new leads and better customer engagement overall.
A few ways to develop these co-branding opportunities include:
- Unite over support of an important cause
- Select a complementary – but not competing – business to cross-promote a product or service
- Participate in a local event together and share your adventures online
2019 is going to be a year of major digital growth and social media will continue to be a key performer in that growth. Make sure that your company is evolving with the trends and don’t get left behind. We hope these tips will help you stay on top of your social media game and ahead of your competitors. Here is to another amazing year!