If you want to be one step ahead of your competitors in social media marketing, a very important thing to do is to update yourself with some of the best social media marketing trends that are expected to drive the future of social media marketing in 2020 and onwards.
Social media marketing has significantly evolved since the early days of Facebook, Twitter, and even the days of Myspace, and B2B marketers must continuously keep up with new features and changes launched by each respective platform to integrate them into their marketing strategies.
Nowadays, there are various ways businesses can use social media in their marketing efforts. Monitoring social media mentions and conversations can be a great way to gather customer insights, and running highly-targeted social media advertising is now among the most cost-efficient ways to advertise your business.
With that being said, here are eight of the most important trends of social media marketing in 2020.
8. AR Integration
While Augmented Reality (AR) along with VR have been huge buzzwords for the past half-decade or so, AR hasn’t really gained the mainstream popularity it is expected to be. However, in the past couple of years or so, it has started to change.
Face filters on Instagram (and Snapchat) is an example implementation of AR in social media, and we know how popular they are among the younger social media users. There are also potentials for other implementations like the ‘try before buy’ experience for eCommerce, or simply to entertain and engage users.
In short, pay attention to new opportunities to integrate AR in your social media marketing.
7. Video Content Continues To Be Trendy
This shouldn’t be a surprise. Both short and long videos are now the most shared content on social media.
YouTube is now a gigantic social media platform on its own, closing on Facebook’s number of active users. Of course, we also need to discuss Tiktok (both the phenomenon and controversies). While marketing opportunities on TikTok are still fairly limited at the moment and with rumors of the ban, labeling TikTok a fad would be premature.
In short, however, we can no longer neglect the importance of video in our social media marketing strategy. It is now much more affordable and accessible to create video content, so if you haven’t already, it’s definitely time to start publishing your videos.
6. Transparency and Privacy
Transparency has been a major issue to social media since the 2016 election, and of course, there’s also GDPR and similar regulations that we should take account of in our social media marketing.
As a brand, you’d need to properly communicate transparency on social media: people expect brands to be more genuine and authentic on social media, including responding to negative reviews and complaints and admitting mistakes.
Whenever possible, be transparent about things like your values, business practices, product changes, and your team. Providing your audience with a behind-the-scenes context can also be effective.
The key takeaway here is that the more transparent and ‘raw’ your brand is, the more your audience will trust you, which will significantly contribute to conversion rate.
5. Shoppable Posts/Social Shopping
The past couple of years have allowed us to see the rise of social shopping, allowing users to shop products on the social media app without ever needing to leave the app.
Many brands have already taken advantage of social shopping. Instagram, for example, now allows brands to easily tag products in your posts and allow your audience to purchase what they see right away.
By eliminating obstacles and making it faster for customers to purchase things, shoppable posts can significantly boost the conversion rates.
If you are an eCommerce business, or if your product allows eCommerce sales, make sure to take advantage of this social shopping trend.
4. User-Generated Content
User-generated content has been around since the early days of social media. However, in recent years, many brands have been obsessed with utilizing social media marketing trends to boost conversion rates.
Why? Because simply put, people trust authenticity in social media, and 80% of consumers admitted that user-generated content about a product has influenced their purchase decisions more compared to content generated by the brands.
Encouraging your customers to produce user-generated content can significantly help in boosting your brand’s credibility. Also, always monitor your mentions and conversations about your brand to find potentially hidden UGCs that might help your brand.
3. Social Messaging As Marketing Opportunities
We are often too focused on the glamor of social media platforms with their influencers and engagements, but the fact is that more users actually use social messaging apps than social media apps.
Yes, there are more people using WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Viber, and WeChat compared to Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Facebook Messenger, for example, has over 1 billion active users and according to Facebook, there are more than 2 billion messages sent on Messenger each month.
So, how can we use this trend in social media marketing? We can use these messaging apps to improve our customer service and overall customer experience. This is why Messenger-based chatbots are now so popular among many brands.
2. Alternative Platforms
In 2015 or so, choosing our social platforms is fairly simple: if you are a B2B business, then you should market on LinkedIn, and if you are a B2C business, then go to Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
However, today it’s not that simple. Not only there are new platforms like TikTok, but younger people are also spending time on streaming services like Netflix and YouTube rather than browsing their social media accounts. Also, Pinterest has seen a recent resurgence in the past couple of years.
So, marketers should diversify and not put their eggs in one basket. Proper marketing research to figure out where your target audience is active on is crucial for your social media marketing success.
1. Digital Dopamine Detox
In 2018 and 2019, many influencers are sounding the detox from social media, and so more people are now choosing to take this detox: some cutting back from their usual social media activities, and many have also deleted apps and profiles to completely step away from social media.
A big reason for this is how many of us (probably including you) now feel overwhelmed by social media. Not only social media can waste a lot of money, but it can also affect our mental wellbeing.
However, this isn’t saying that social media marketing is not completely useless, but marketers must consider the impact their campaigns could have and also need to diversify your marketing budget to other channels like email marketing or SEO.
To plan your social media strategy, knowing the biggest social media marketing trends is essential so you can stay ahead of your competitors and be more effective in engaging users.
The 8 trends we have discussed above are among the most important and are most likely to be the major driver of the future of social media marketing. So, it’s time to start planning your strategy and start turning your social media accounts into your lead generation and conversion devices.