A cornucopia of controversies concerning privacy, hacking, fake news, and many other factors pervaded our digital lives in 2019. Despite that, as you might have guessed, Internet and social media use just won’t stop, can’t stop.
Hootsuite recently released its annual report, and based on research and data from over three thousand marketers and interviews with industry analysts, it identifies five key social media trends for 2020. The social media landscape can change as quickly as a retweet, so if companies and influencers wish to acquire the next massive wave of potential customers, they must be more nimble and creative than ever—all while keeping these trends in mind.
If you’re a content publisher or you’re involved in social media, here are the five observations from the past year you can use to improve your brand message.
Trend 1: Brands Strike a Balance between Public and Private Engagement
Takeaway: Make Your Social Media Work for Your Customers; Omnichannel Communication or Bust!
“The future is private.” —Mark Zuckerberg
So, how do you actually create desirability for your platform? Well, over 50 percent of people say social media apps are where they feel most comfortable sharing.
Since public feeds build brand awareness, increased social advertising can broaden audience reach. Once that’s done, the influx of users who frequently engage public feeds will want private channels to cut out the noise. This is where private channels can present the “problem-solution” value that will keep users on your platform.
Users are willing to spend a lot of time on platforms that deliver this type of seamless blend of trending discussions and personalized content for their private groups, and in today’s world of instant gratification, a direct line of communication to your brand online is all but expected.
For deeper customer relationships via social platforms, make sure you have a user-friendly interface. It should be easily accessible in order to enable human connections.
Trend 2: Employers Take Center Stage in a Divided World
Takeaway: Don’t Be Shy about Displaying Socially Conscious Activities
Millennials across forty-two countries and territories are doubtful about the prospect of a prosperous future, and less than one-quarter of them expect improvements anytime soon.
This perception reveals what environmentally conscious consumers want from a brand’s story. They want companies to acknowledge their impact on society and to actively make changes to improve themselves.
Similarly, employees want their companies to start projects that positively impact their communities, foster talent development, and celebrate diversity.
Progressive initiatives can be an effective strategy to simultaneously engender employee-customer engagement, as well as investor interest.
Trend 3: TikTok’s Rise and the Next Generation on Social
Takeaway: Don’t Be Left Behind in a Rapidly Changing Landscape
“To the tick tock, ya don’t stop.” —Color Me Badd
Over the past year, brands such as Guess, American Eagle, and Chipotle used TikTok hashtag challenges to coax their customers into sharing their stories via fun videos.
With more than eight hundred million monthly active users making and sharing video content, TikTok can provide invaluable insight for social marketers who want to rev up their awareness and engagement strategies.
Whether you’re specifically using TikTok or not, the value of rapid short-form video as the top-performing content format on social media shouldn’t be ignored
How Does a Brand Push “Start” on their Esports Marketing Strategy?
If you aren’t already immersed in this industry, there is definitely a learning curve. Once you get involved, though, it is quite an exciting ride!
If your company is a nonendemic (not naturally integrated) brand, a targeting exercise can help you determine where your target market and the demographics in the esports industry intersect. The most significant segment currently is males between the ages of thirteen and thirty-five. This group is tech savvy and has higher spending patterns than the average consumer in this age range. For example, they are willing to spend more money on consumables in the esports arena (virtual and physical).
Trend 4: Social Marketing and Performance Marketing Collide
Takeaway: Even Established Marketers Need to Expand Their Skill Sets
Nearly 44 percent of senior marketers told Hootsuite that “driving conversions” was their top goal for social media. That’s second only to generating brand awareness. It takes more than these quick wins for a business to succeed, though. So, update your skills, and keep tabs on emerging marketing tactics! Remember, building a brand is a long-distance run, not a sprint to the finish line.
Diversifying your skill sets can help you achieve long-term success—as opposed to short-term conversions that don’t necessarily guarantee consumer reach beyond your initial audience.
If you want to achieve more sales, leads, or clicks, you must progress toward your goal from multiple perspectives.
Trend 5: The Social Proof Gap Closes
Takeaway: Build Your Own Attribution Models
“Omnichannel” is a trending term right now (that might very well become cliché by next year), but many brands are working to make this tactic the reality of their communication and campaign strategies. That being said, it remains difficult for many socially active brands to definitively deduce where specific results come from.
According to Hootsuite, “Seventy percent of respondents in our Social Media Trends 2020 survey aren’t using an attribution model at all.”
In this day and age where it seems every company has a team of data scientists with graduate degrees in analytics, this might come as surprising. Technology, though, is a lot like nature, and as we learned in Jurassic Park, it will “find a way” to evolve.
Those steering the digital ships largely seem to be finding other manner of data and sentiment to measure for attribution.
Of the more than three thousand respondents to the social media trends survey,
three traits were common among organizations who reported either being “very
confident” or “extremely confident” in measuring ROI: “They unite social data with other data for a holistic view…They focus on omnichannel integration…hey don’t reinvent the wheel when it comes to attribution.”
2020 looks to be an exciting year filled with rapidly changing digital environments for marketers, and brands will need to take trend adaptation seriously as they develop new skill sets in order to deepen their understanding of how customers make their choices.
Hootsuite’s Social Media Trends 2020 report is based on a survey of more than 3,100 marketers and interviews with industry specialists. For more information, the report can be found here.
What This Means for Your Business
The technology driven economy is quickly changing. Social media trends, digital interactions and communications, and the key elements driving conversions is becoming more and more dependent on finding that niche segment of potential customers. This is a challenge in a digitally cluttered arena. But, we are experts at the marketing funnel and we can get you started on a path to growth and significant return on investment. Schedule a call today to speak directly with our Chief Strategist and CEO, Karl Boehm.