2020 was a year in which we saw significant shifts in the ways brands promoted their products and services in the digital space.
With a growing need to engage users online, brands are eager to know more about the changing landscape of social media and what to expect in the future.
Here are some research-backed social media trends that marketers can leverage:
1. Rise in demand for snackable content In 2020.
TikTok and Instagram reels blew up, with significant engagement from Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat stories. Brands have been creating short pieces of easy to consume content to educate their customers about their offerings.
As the average attention span of consumers shrinks and the flood of content online rises, snackable content will continue to dominate the social media space.
A great example of snackable content is the beautiful Instagram stories Starbucks creates to promote holiday-specific drinks which are always a hit with customers.
Some ways to create snackable content include:
- Repurpose a blog post that has performed well in the past into another format
- Pick an insight and turn it into an infographic or meme for social media
- Edit videos into smaller snippets to offer key information
- Share content across different social media platforms, for instance take a screenshot of a tweet and post it on your Instagram story
2. Video will continue to be a frontrunner
Video is the most common and second most engaging content format as per a Hubspot report conducted in 2020. Keeping in line with this, big players like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn continue to upgrade their video capabilities. Marketers can expect high levels of video consumption in the coming year as well.
3. Live streams are here to stay
With most businesses going remote and meetings turning to Zoom calls, other real-time events turned into live streams.
Facebook and Instagram saw a massive rise in numbers of views especially in Covid hotspots, with more people becoming used to the idea of interacting with a brand within their homes, through a live stream.
Based on a Sprout socials report, 25% of marketers consider live streams to be a valuable part of their social media strategy. Live streams work even better if you’re looking at upping your personal branding or you are a recent influencer who is starting to interact with their audience.
4. Social platforms double up as e-commerce platforms
The social media industry is constantly evolving to meet consumer needs and enhance the user experience. There are more features and tools that enable quick and easy shopping such as product tags that allow easy checkout while being on the same platform. This also brings down the instances of incomplete transactions.
54% of social media users discover new brands and research products using social media. Marketers should continue to leverage this trend to influence purchase decisions of their audiences.
The next big initiative for our Social Apps is going to be on how to help brands with their E-commerce within the apps itself.
5. Virtual and augmented reality gain popularityp as e-commerce platforms
People all over the world are seeking more meaningful interactions with the need for social distancing and quarantining in the past year. Virtual reality is among the technological trends that fulfill desire.
Interactions through VR gives people a sense of being together no matter where they’re located.
Facebook hopped onto this trend in early 2021, and used the Oculus platform to beta-test a virtual space that allows people to play games and connect with each other. Never to target the technology experiments with Apple’s new releases and announcements. Best examples for AR.
Augmented reality is another trend that is easier to execute and access compared to virtual reality. AR experiences are highly immersive, making them effective engagement tools. Brand specific filters to promote a product or feature are a popular AR trend to promote user interaction.
6. Influencer marketing becomes bigger
Collaborating with Instagram and YouTube personalities and celebrities to spread the word about your business or product has become an integral part of social media marketing in 2021. Influencer marketing comes across as more authentic compared to corporate advertising.
The rising use of collaborations on Instagram has also led to the introduction of the new ‘Collab’ feature. This feature allows one creator to invite another to collaborate with them if the other creator accepts the invite, the collaboration post appears on both their pages simultaneously.
Influencer marketing is also going to be affected by AI. In the coming year, AI will make it possible to find the right influencers to pair up with to generate a higher positive ROI.
For example, the fashion and beauty industry is a great match for influencer marketing. A study shows that about 60% of beauty brands use influencer marketing since this industry relies heavily on visual promotion.
The travel industry is another example of this trend. Oyo, AirBnB, and IndiGo airlines have creatively partnered with influencers to promote safe travels during the pandemic.
7. Moment marketing
Moment marketing is about identifying micro moments on social media when a certain topic is popular, and use that opportunity to draw in your audiences towards your brand.
Timing is of utmost importance to get this trend right. While jumping onto a trending topic is good to get more eyeballs on your content, it is essential to keep in mind the ethos of your brand while crafting your communication.
Zomato does this really well, with their humorous approach on all things current while still keeping food delivery, hunger, and different cuisines to be the focus of their content. Other noteworthy examples include brands like Durex, Dunzo. and Mumbai Police among others.
Staying updated with the latest social trends is important for brand relevance and to build a strong user community. It is a practice at ADish that has led to encouraging results for all our clients.