Today, Social Media is undoubtedly the most coveted marketing destination. Lower investments, quick and easy access to customers as well as immense potential to scale make it one of the most sought-after marketing channels for brands across the globe. However, its ever-changing nature requires constant monitoring. As a result, brands and businesses need to suitably tweak their social media strategies in accordance with existing trends.
Consider the key challenge that brands face today - drastic dip in the organic reach of social media posts. How do brands combat this challenge and get better visibility in the newsfeed of their fans and target audience? What’s trending in the Social Media Marketing space that brands can capitalize on? Here are some insights into the Social Media Marketing Trends of 2019.
1. Visual Content:
Brands have already started moving from a text-first approach to a visual-first mentality in their communications. Retaining a visual edge is mandatory if they wish to be heard by the audience that matters to them. The below trends are working their way to the centre stage and will continue to be the dominant content formats of 2019:
By 2019, 80% of online content consumed will be in video formats. Video formats will comprise a major segment of a brand’s content marketing efforts. While YouTube continues to grow as a platform giving YouTubers a chance to create a variety of video content for their audience, video ads will continue to thrive. Social media marketers should take advantage of this and include video ads in their 2019 social media strategy. Other Social Media Video Marketing trends to watch out for in 2019 are Geo-located Video Discovery, Sharing and Storytelling in micro-moments and Vertical Video.
Ephemeral Content refers to visual content that is not permanent, the most suggestive example being Instagram/Snapchat Stories that disappear in a limited number of hours. The short lifespan of ephemeral content creates a sense of urgency in the audience, making them feel excluded if they miss a story or snap. This also gives viewers an opportunity to consume content actively, establishing a real connection between them and brands. And the numbers justify – According to Entrepreneur, 200 million Instagram users use Instagram Stories each month, while Snapchat and Instagram Stories have almost 450 million daily users combined.
In addition to ephemeral content, live video is a key opportunity for brands to delve into in 2019. The interactivity and authenticity that live video promises makes it a powerful tool to engage with an audience and reinforce the relationship between a brand and its audience.
2. Social Listening:
Social Media Listening is the act of using a tool to listen to what is being said about a brand or a set of keywords, across social media and the web. Come 2019, and it wouldn’t be enough to monitor @ mentions alone. According to a study by Brandwatch, 96% of people that discuss brands online do not follow the brands’ owned profiles. So, it’s likely that brands miss out on a major chunk of conversations about them. This means that companies need to go beyond their own social presence and use Social Listening to monitor conversations, gain valuable insights, and manage brand interactions on social media. Not doing Social Listening as yet? 2019 would be a good time to include this in your Social Media Strategy.
3. Micro-Influencer Marketing:
Unlike celebrities, industry experts or popular social media handles with huge fan numbers, micro-influencers are social media users with sufficient & highly-engaged audience that brands have largely started to work with. These micro-influencers are affordable, deliver better engagement rates and craft personalised content that resonates well with the audience.
Look for micro-influencers in your market and partner with them to improve your brand visibility, engagement or sales, this 2019!
4. Regulations on Social Data:
Data is the pillar of social media advertising. Data privacy and security has been the talk of the town, throughout 2018. The Cambridge Analytica fiasco that harvested personal data from around 87 million Facebook profiles was a wake-up call for users and brands alike. Requirements of conformation with GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) have forced many a business to be transparent and ensure that users have an authentic experience on their platforms. Brands are now aware that their Social Media Marketing strategy in 2019 will need to incorporate more trustworthy ways of social engagement with their customers, rather than one-sided marketing communications that collect heaps of user data without any value proposition.
Wondering what happens to Artificial Intelligence driven community management (read customized responses and the usage of chatbots), Dynamic Social Ads on LinkedIn, Social Selling and Content Personalisation? These features that took the last two years by storm are going strong and are here to stay. It would be interesting to observe how they evolve in 2019.
Ready to take on 2019 with the above social media marketing trends incorporated into your marketing strategy? Let us know how it goes. Or if you are looking for guidance on how these trends can be leveraged to create and implement Social Media strategies that generate ROI for businesses, we’re just an email away – firstname.lastname@example.org!