The nature of social media means that there are regular updates and constant changes. It is important to keep up to date and on top of the latest trends so that you do not get left behind.
We have put together the current top ten trends within the social media landscape to help you shape your social strategy…
Trend 1 – TikTok
Although Instagram is still a firm favourite, TikTok’s growth is set to be huge, and its popularity is not slowing down anytime soon. Since 2020, the number of consumers has grown monthly by 32% according to Hubspot’s 2022 Social Media Trends report. It has quickly become the go-to-app for connecting with current and future consumers as short form video content becomes more popular.
TikTok can help brands gain exposure to and connect with a qualified, engaged audience with its highly personalised content recommendation system.
Trend 2 – Social ads will develop
Google is currently working on phasing out third-party cookie tracking by 2023. Brands must learn to balance the need for personalised services and the need for compliance which creates a bright future for advertisers.
Over the past year, social platforms have become a huge asset for advertisers to reach consumers in a personal and direct way. More advertisers are beginning to realise the importance of social ads and how crucial they will be moving forward.
Trend 3 – Social Selling
Platforms are beginning to provide new selling solutions that focus on making the journey easier for buyers. Consumers can now purchase items on Instagram without leaving the app. Looking towards the future, brands need to re-evaluate the purchasing paths they offer and consider taking advantage of these opportunities to sell through Instagram.
Hubspot noted that 69% of marketers plan to disburse more money on Instagram influencers than any other market this year, which helps with these selling opportunities.
Trend 4 – Using smaller networks for ads
Earlier this year Apple announced that it will block the ability of Facebook to target a significant segment of its users, which is why it is now key for brands to look at utilising other platforms for advertising.
Pinterest Business shared that ads on their platform can generate twice the return on ad spend for retail brands, compared to other social media channels. And although Snapchat isn’t the most popular for marketing the stats show that there is a potential advertising audience there that continues to grow.
Trend 5 – The rise of Social Audio popularity
Since Clubhouse launched in 2020, social audio has started to take off. Twitter also launched Spaces in November 2020 to mirror the success of this.
More than 74% of businesses indicated in Hootsuite’s 2022 Social Media Trends survey that they’re planning to invest in audio-only content in the next year. The same survey revealed that hosting an audio live stream as a thought leader was the most popular strategy.
Businesses need to consider using social audio as part of their marketing strategy but need to also be aware that they would need to invest time and expertise into creating the content.
Trend 6 – Augmented Reality
Social media will see a rise in the adoption of technologies such as augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). As these platforms grow, users will demand more engaging experiences, and these technologies can make that happen. AR filters are already being used on social platforms including Instagram and Snapchat.
However, there is more to AR than just filters. Businesses can also use it to provide a better shopping experience for their customers. It’s becoming more common for brands to use AR so that people can try out products beforehand. According to The Drum, AR can boost click-through rates by as much as 33%.
Trend 7 – Video content continues to dominate
Video content remains one of the most engaging forms of content with a rise in engagement with Reels. However, it is not all about long form content anymore as short form has seen success from TikTok, Stories and Reels.
A Cisco study revealed by 2022, 82% of all online content will be video content showing how important it is to make video a regular part of your content plan and to stay relevant.
Trend 8 – Local targeting will become more prevalent
Local targeting on social media is used to gain more organic traffic. This type of location-based targeting is used by brands to reach people in a specific geographical area.
Using geo-tagging in posts and stories is a common way to reach a local audience. You can search for posts from nearby places on certain platforms such as Instagram if the location has been added to your content to help increase the likelihood of local people finding your brand on social.
Geo-targeting also works well for promoted posts or tweets as these platforms help you target the right audiences and can help to get people to attend local events.
Trend 9 – More brands will incorporate social listening
Social media has a plethora of data and insights that businesses can use to refine their social strategies. With the launch of so many social listening tools, it has become easy for anyone to access these insights.
So, what exactly can you pull form social listening? You can use it to understand the impact of a social campaign as well as understanding what people think of your brand.
By setting up mentions, keywords and hashtags that are important to your industry you can really tap into your audience.
Trend 10 – Online communities will help businesses grow
Post lockdown the need to socialise and connect has grown. Online communities continue to grow and these groups will become crucial for businesses to build relationships and attend to their customers’ needs. Businesses can also use the groups to launch new products or services and gain valuable feedback and customer insights.
Brands needs to be strategic in shaping their content around the consumer to engaged with these communities.
Becky Cleary is the Social Media Account Director at Whistle PR which offers a range of integrated communications services including strategic consultancy, PR, social media and internal communications. For further information, email email@example.com or contact us here.