Emily Strachan
23/11/18

4 Social Media Trends For Businesses That Aren’t Going Away in 2019

2018 is almost over and what a year it has been for social media marketing!

We’ve seen significant changes to Facebook Ads Manager with the introduction of new features regarding Dynamic Creatives, A/B testing, Dynamic Language Optimisation and new placements across Instagram and Facebook. In addition to this, we’re now able to follow hashtags on Instagram, Snapchat launched an update that shocked the world, and LinkedIn has made some much-needed improvements to profiles, groups and search.

However, the success of your social media marketing largely depends on how quickly you can adapt to such a fast-paced industry, as these platforms continually grow and expand.

Earlier this month, a number of our savvy social media experts headed to London for Social Media Week, to discover which key social media trends won’t be disappearing anytime soon!

Here are our team’s top 4 social media trends for businesses to keep an eye on:

1) Influencer Marketing:

Over the past 2 years, we’ve seen a significant increase in the interest of influencer marketing. With this has come a negative stigma that has swarmed the national newspapers about fake accounts and bots. Low value content, lack of accountability and CPM/CPE is also at the top of the list for brands’ main concerns.

However, 62% of businesses are planning to spend more money on influencer marketing next year, meaning it won’t be going away any time soon.

The question now is, how do retailers become more effective when planning, tracking and executing their influencer campaigns?

  • Integration - brands must go back to the basic principles and have an integrated approach when planning their campaigns. How does an influencer campaign fit into the bigger picture? How can other marketing channels support it? And most importantly, what does the audience actually want to see?
  • It’s also about building relationships, not contractual obligations. If you select the right influencers that believe in your brand values, then not only will you gain compelling content, but you’ll also gain brand advocates that will believe and join your journey. These then become ambassadors for your brand, that can benefit your future launches, campaigns and business developments.
  • Finally, it’s about utilising the content you receive through paid campaigns. It’s essential to have paid campaigns running throughout your influencer outreach, ensuring that you’re retargeting new visitors coming through social media platforms to your site, but also recreating assets into paid media ad units.

2) Social Storytelling:

As users, we scroll on average through 200 metres of messages, emails and feeds each day - so how do you stand out? The key is social storytelling. Social storytelling became a popular buzzword in 2017, but brands are still not using some of the basic principles that allow users to immerse themselves in your story, values and journey.

It’s all about building deep connections with your audience through the power of imagery, stories and defining who you are as a brand and what you stand for. It’s about transforming the way the user understands.

But how do you do that?

The answer: Stay true to your brand. Share visuals that are timeless, that say everything about who you are and what you do. Push the boundaries with your content and try new things. Focus on community and turn a monologue into dialogue. Be meaningful and relevant, focusing on how you can turn your social media accounts into a portal of interest for the user.

3) Vertical Video:

With 400 million people using Instagram stories and 500 million Facebook users watching video content each day, vertical video has never been more important. 50% of consumers want Instagram and Facebook stories from brands that include promotions, so it’s essential that vertical video is factored into your media and marketing planning.

7/10 campaigns that run vertical video also have a better ad recall, but how do you ensure that your video content stands out? Consider how it’s served from start to finish, guaranteeing that your content is relatable to your audience. Ensure that content is produced for organic and paid social channels as well, so you can maximise visibility, capturing organic users but also sending creatives to targeted audiences.

4) Insights and Sentiment:

Tracking performance through social media has always been a challenge for marketers, especially aspects such as understanding ROI, value and attribution. With changes to the industry, those metrics are no longer enough, and larger organisations are looking further into sentiment tracking and buyer intent through monitoring engagements.

Brands now want to understand how data is integrated across all departments and how data from social media can be used to influence product innovation. Sentiment and insight data can also help us adjust marketing spend and targeting, based on the response and conversations from customers.

The industry is only just scratching the surface on data from social media marketing, and throughout 2019 we predict that platforms and third parties will further improve and develop insight monitoring, to shape marketing strategies and business objectives in the future.

If you’re looking to step up your social media marketing in 2019, get in touch with our experts on 01642 988416 or via email using bd@visualsoft.co.uk.

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