Social Media Marketing is a refreshing change from the fad marketing crazes that have been known to consume marketers and corporations. What started in a circumspect manner is today a proven effective, dynamic, and ever-improving platform of information broadcasting, and hence the perfect channel for marketing of all kinds. Opinion makers always questioned the viability of marketing over social media, but the facts and statistics of social media marketing in 2015 have a lot to say.
The best part of social media marketing is that the market is abuzz with action, and social media companies are scampering past each other, trying to outdo competitors and emerge as the most effective platform for marketing. What does this mean for marketers across the globe? Of course, 2016 is going to be hot and happening in terms of social media marketing, and that’s why you can’t even think of going past our list of the smartest social media trends that will crown the kings of marketing in the years to come.
A New Dimension of Immediacy
Content richness has continued to be a differentiator for social media platforms for some time now. However, the smartest of marketers have always caught the pulse of the future, and that’s something called in-the-moment updates. Twitter recently acquired a platform called Periscope, where members can broadcast the live feed of vide from their lives. These in-the-moment updates usher in a new dimension of immediacy to social content. What does it mean for marketers?
- Well, for starters, this would mean that any promotional events would need to be planned to be social-media ready so that their live feeds could be used to gather global attention.
- Then, practices such as planning social media content campaigns with scheduled posts will become obsolete.
- What’s more, even the whole concept of ‘viral’ on social media will have to be rethought!
Union of Social Media and E-Shopping
Five years back in time, it would have seemed preposterous to imagine social media based selling. However, Facebook and Pinterest have successfully integrated BUY buttons into their platforms, this sowing the seeds of a future that will blur the lines between e-shopping an e-socializing. Not only will this let social media marketers step into the domains of web selling, but will also allow marketers to pursue real sales-centric marketing campaigns, with ROIs presenting more transparent figures, as sales will be a central part of the whole campaign. Also, the whole concept of advertising will adorn a more ‘sociable’ touch because the ‘message to buy’ and the ‘product’ itself will be hosted on the social media channel.
The Endless Experience – Driven by Apps
Currently, Facebook is setting all the trends in terms of infusing widgets and new functionalities into the social media experience, to provide multidimensional and engaging content to users. For instance, auto-playing videos based on scrolling, an in-post search engine to reach to articles you are referring to, and Instant Articles which is an entirely fresh channel of publishing – all make the Facebook experience more refreshing, entertaining, and engaging than ever.
Marketers need to stay in sync with the enhancements being brought forth by social media platforms and devise their promotional content leveraging these new age features. These special apps and widgets will be more relevant for marketers competing in fiercely contested markets, as they’ll present opportunities of differentiation based on content presentation.
Privacy – A Concern for Social Media Users Plus Marketers
Ashley Madison’s nightmare with hacking has been a thunderous slap on the face of everyone who’s been giving their life’s ins and outs to the web. For those who don’t know, Ashley Madison is an extramarital dating website, which got hacked in July 2015, triggering waves of panic among registered users for the fear of exposure. There were even reports of hackers blackmailing registered members of the website over exposing compromising details of their interactions with the web service.
The point here is that everyone’s a lot more serious about privacy on social media networks – the users, the platform owners, and the marketers. So, intrusive advertising campaigns can expect lackluster times ahead. Marketers will need to find ways to extract consumer details – email ID (for targeted marketing) and credit card details (for simplified shopping enablement) – without inciting qualms among users.
Newer Advertising Tactics with Ever-Expanding Scope of ad Formats
We mentioned real time video feed, which is just one of the several exciting new forms of advertising that social media is becoming a vista too. 2015 saw several reports mention drastic improvements in mobile ad spends for organizations on Facebook. Of course, justifying ROI and capturing audience attention continue to be the challenges for marketers, made all the more complex with the speed at which social media platforms are innovating. Better impression reach, lower costs per click and higher ROIs – these 3 aspects are at the core of success with new ad formats, and marketers need to decide upon their social advertising mix based on these.
Tapping Smarter News Feeds on Facebook
Experts believe that the algorithm that decides which user sees what content on his/her social wall is based on more than 1000 variables. Guess what – paid news feed content makes up for merely 3% of the total news feed content showed and shared on Facebook. What does this mean for marketers? Firstly, it’s too difficult to find the Facebook formula of pushing news feeds, so one can’t hope to design news feeds that are Facebook friendly, and hence available for exposure. Secondly, this implies that marketers need to track news feeds, capture the obvious quality attributes, and build their content centered on those quality attributes.
To wrap up this guide, let’s just say that 2016 is the year that’s going to redefine the scope of marketing with social media, the year that will redraw the boundaries of achievement via social media, and the year that will force marketers to rethink how they create content, and what they achieve with the content. So, keep your eyes, ears, and minds open, and leverage the next gen of social media capabilities for your marketing gains.