Here is a look at the evolving world of social media trends and the upcoming trends to pay attention to.
It’s 2015 and brands have figured out how to best use social media for business. The last decade was filled with trial-and-error attempts to succeed as the operating environment evolved. However, the same trends that created this environment have continued to develop and unless brands adapt, their efforts at digital engagement will be a waste. Marketers must update their strategies for social media, because over the next 10 years it will be:
The way consumers use sites and the way brands participate and engage have changed fundamentally over the past 10 years. Brands must discontinue thetactics that worked in 2005 and adopt customer relationship and engagement strategies that harness data for long-term growth.
Social media has long escaped the scrutiny of the chief financial officer and it’s time for brands to monetise social media efforts. Fashion brands, such as Burberry and Ralph Lauren, understand this and have made their runway videos shoppable. Now, every brand should incorporate financial calls to action in social media content.
Consumers are finding it increasingly difficult to digest long-form content. When browsing, users want to get to the heart of the message as quickly as possible. The more snackable a brand makes its content, the more social it will be. Easy to understand means easy to share, which translates into better results for content and campaigns.
Currently, ad placement and publishing in social is a manual process. This will evolve to better utilise data and computers. Most advertisers are already shifting display and video budgets into this type of media buying, and social media will follow suit. Why? All consumers hate ads because of interruption, irrelevance and clutter. Programmatic placement (the insertion of ads and native content into social media sites) can help drive context, relevance and efficiency of messaging.
The power of our increasingly powerful mobile devices as social utilities are where great potential lies. The ability to develop transformative applications that connect individuals toindividuals but also societies to societies holds great potential.
Increasingly powerful and affordable technology allows people to create more content than ever before. In fact, 90% of the world’s data has been created over the past two years. Because of this information overload, people will filter out messages to hear only what they want to hear, creating segmented and sheltered media channels.
Social media sites act as brand graveyards, filled with the tombstones of dead campaigns that were only meant to survive a single campaign. From TV commercials and billboards to microsites and social media accounts, brands must focus on using platforms for long-term relationship building.
China currently contributes the greatest percentage to global GDP growth. However, many Chinese social media sites remain focused on the local market. Over the next 10 years, these sites will shift their focus beyond the “great firewall” and enter overseas markets.
With all the excitement about wearables, it’s easy to forget about the internet of things. More importantly, it’s the concept of addressability – the ability for a device to receive a message or signal – that brands need to figure out. The natural evolution of consumer devices is into implantables, which are the ultimate personal technology.
Some brands, such as Dove and Nike, have discovered that supporting social good can have a greater impact than feeding individual egos. Other brands will follow suit and use social media efforts to look at the long tail, identifying opportunities to foster empowerment and equality aligned with brand values.
Brands must change their mindset to engage successfully in the future. Marketers must embrace their inner digital geek and learn to love technology. To harness trends, they must look beyond their borders, specifically to the east where Asia leads the way. Realising that their current techniques are outdated will lead brands to new strategies for success in the next decade.