There’s a lot on the horizon for social media in 2018, and marketers, bloggers and business owners alike should be taking note. From the increasing importance of trust and transparency, to influencer marketing continuing to grow at a rapid pace, and the ever-growing popularity of Instagram stories, we’ve collected some of the top social media trends for you to prepare for in 2018.
DARE WE SAY IT? 'AUTHENTICITY' CONTINUES TO SET WINNERS APART
It’s no secret that authenticity was one of the hottest social media topics of 2017. From fake news to fake profiles and misleading sponsorships, there has been a significant shift in the way consumers are viewing brands, and trust is at an all time low. For this reason, it’s going to be trust and transparency that set the winners apart on social media in 2018 as we slowly move away from vanity metrics, and more towards micro-influencers and genuine engagement. Consumers, particularly millennials, have become extremely cautious and more aware of inauthentic brands than ever before, and there is no longer have a place to hide. What does that mean? Drop the bots and start creating real communities. INFLUENCER MARKETING PLAYS A BIG ROLE
In 2017, we saw more influencer marketing campaigns on our social media platforms than ever before, and that’s not going to slow down in 2018. As this billion dollar industry continues to grow through its unique ability to target consumers and impact the path to purchase on a seriously large scale, we can anticipate that even more businesses will be allocating marketing spend to influencers this year. What does that mean for businesses? Evaluate your marketing budget and goals for the year. Are you looking to grow your engagement? Brand awareness? Do you have the budget to work with celebrity influencers, or maybe a group of micro-influencers instead? Going back to the first topic of authenticity, it’s going to be extremely important to remember that when working with influencers, building a relationship is key. As influencer marketing continues to grow, more brands are reaching out to these influencers on a regular basis. Think about how you can build a holistic relationship with these influencers. Building genuine trust, engagement and respect is going to be what makes or breaks your strategy in the long run.
SOCIAL MEDIA STORIES ARE HERE FOR THE LONG HAUL
Another social media feature that grew dramatically in popularly last year was social media stories. Starting with Snapchat, to now over 200 million people using Instagram stories every month (keep in mind that this feature has only been around for one year), the trend of ‘temporary content’ is going to continue growing in the years to come. Why? Because people go crazy for time-sensitive content, and it also creates the authenticity that can be sometimes feel lost in a static post on our Instagram grid. So, if you’re building your strategy for social media engagement in 2018, make sure it revolves around the idea of being authentic, engaging and live - aka, social media stories.
EXPECT SOME TWITTER CHANGES
Twitter, when being compared to our friends Instagram and Facebook, didn’t have its best year. As the platform has been losing a bit of relevancy and didn’t exactly grow a following in 2017 (like, at all), we can only expect that some big moves are made in 2018 to keep things afloat. Of course, they made the very anticipated change to expand to 280-character tweets, and we’re hoping that’s only the beginning of what we can expect to see moving forward.
Do you think Twitter needs to up its game? What changes do you think we can see on this social media platform in the future? Some experts are talking subscription methods, while others are talking new advertising options. Let us know in the comments below!