Do you know around 11 people use social media for the first time every second? Yes, that’s a very interesting fact revealed in the report Global Digital Report 2018 by ‘We Are Social’. What’s more exciting according to this report is that the number of social media users has already surpassed the mark of 3 million in 2018.
Now, when we are in 2020, this figure is expected to be only bigger. This reveals the love of people for social media and how much everyone wants to stay up to date and share what they like, what they do not like, where they are going for treats, lunch, dinner, and pretty much everything they want to talk and share about.
What does this mean for social media marketers???
A lot of opportunities for finding not only potential customers but also a great medium for spreading “word-of-mouth” for your brand. Many small and large business owners are already benefiting from their adaptability to social media trends. If you are also looking for ways to increase loyal customer base, fan base, human traffic, and not to mention the revenue, you are really going to need to keep up with what’s trending in the social media world.
Since a lot of unprecedented things are happening in 2020, especially during the COVID-19 lockdown –social distancing, work-from-home culture, and restricted permissions to tag along in groups outside, you better brace up for the sudden change showing up in social media users’ behavior this year and turn all the odds to even for your business benefits.
Here are the top 7 social media trends that are going to prevail in 2020 on which you need to keep a close watch and create your social media strategies accordingly.
Trend 1# Diversification – Increasing presence at newer platforms like Instagram, Tiktok, and Snapchat
Yes, you heard right. Having a presence on just Facebook is not enough now. This is the reason why a lot of brands have diversified their presence. You need to leverage the benefits of other social media platforms that are trending more among teenagers and adults. TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat are all fine examples of such platforms. However, this doesn’t mean you should delete your page on other platforms. It’s all about diversifying your sources of reaching out to more number of people and finding places where they love to spend their time.
Just take a quick look at how much time people spend daily on different social media platforms.
- Facebook (1.4 billion daily active users): 58 min.
- Instagram (500 million daily active users): 53 min.
- Tiktok (720 million daily active users): 52 min.
- Snapchat (178 million daily active users): 49.5 min
- YouTube (30 million daily active users): 40 min.
- Pinterest (200 million monthly active users): 14.2 min.
- Twitter (100 million daily active users): 1 min.
The most interesting fact to note above is that around 90% of all (i.e. 800 million) TikTok users access the app on a daily basis.
Since there is a huge scope in other platforms too, diversifying your presence will only benefit you in short as well as long term. If you are not present at these platforms now, then appear on them right away because you know “the early bird catches the worm”.
Trend 2# Micro-influencers – the ones in whom people tend to have more faith
Another shocking fact for many businesses! People with around ten, five or even one thousand followers have the power to drive noticeable traffic, revenue, and increase brand recognition. Do you know why??? Because people believe that these influencers are the ones who actually use the products and services in daily life before sharing their experiences and making recommendations.
So, who would you think people are going to listen to – micro-influencers who personally invest in their crafts or the power influencers who may or may not be actually using a brand’s offerings? Of course, the former!
Micro-influencers are the ones that share content they really care about and tend to have stronger bonding with their followers and thus, a loyal fan base that believes in them. The best part is that they charge far less than macro and mega influencers and can give you the best value in exchange for your bucks.
Average Engagement Rate of Influencers on Instagram and Twitter in 2018
Image Source: SocialPubli.com
If you still don’t believe it, then check out the following statistics (according to 2018 Global Micro-Influencer Study by SocialPubli) that show the true power of micro-influencers:
- 7 times the engagement rate on Instagram when compared to influencers with larger audiences (see the above bar-graph chart)
- 99.2% of micro-influencers believe in the products and services they promote
- 77% of micro-influencers create content daily, while 23% post weekly
- 60% prefer to use Instagram as an influencer
- 46.6% recommend brands, products, or services to their followers weekly
Trend 3# Creation of Communities and Groups
By now, most of the businesses have created their company pages on Facebook; however, smarter ones are creating communities and groups. From now onwards, small businesses also need to take a step further and create communities and groups to boost the engagement of their brand followers. If you think that offering quality products and services is sufficient and going to help you earn trust from your customers in today’s world, you might be wrong.
These days, people tend to trust those brands more that they feel connected to and easier to reach. When you create a community or group for your customers to engage and have their say, it results in an inherent trust among the customers. They feel more excited to share their views after using your products and services and also tell about it to their friends and relatives that might, in turn, get you more potential customers.
Image Source: Business2Community
Plus, creating groups also help your business in several ways:
- You can learn more about your audience in terms of interests and challenges.
- You can find out what is more important to your audience.
- You find a great opportunity to humanize your brand.
- You earn brand loyalty and great social media engagement.
Trend 4# More Focus on Social Analytics Program than Vanity Metrics
It’s time to reimagine your social metrics. It means what’s more important to marketers now is to use social analytics tools which help in analyzing and reporting social media successes and failures. Wise marketers have started working on them. Since most businesses would be investing more on social media channels to fulfill their goals, it will lead to rigorous scrutiny by authorities and C-suite in the upcoming years.
Image Source: Netbase.com
Thus, being a social media marketer or a business owner, you should be smart enough to devote your time and effort to measurement and analytics programs that use meaningful metrics rather than the standard vanity metrics.
To check analytics on social media, each platform provides its analytics tools that you can use to perform analysis of your posts, ads, campaigns, and so on.
- Facebook: Facebook Analytics (check to Reach and Engagement, Actions, People, Views, Posts, Funnels, Revenue, Customer Lifetime Value, Page Summary, and All Posts Published section)
- Instagram: Switch to Business Account for Instagram Insights (check View Insights, Followers for Demographics, and See More section for detailed analytics)
- Snapchat: Snapchat Insights (check Story Views, View Time, Reach, Story View Percentage, and Audience in See More section)
- TikTok: Switch to TikTok Pro Account to access detailed analytics (including Video Views, Profile Views, Followers, Content Data, Traffic source types, and Audience territories).
- YouTube: YouTube Analytics (check Overview, Realtime, Watch Time, Audience Retention, Demographics, Playback Locations, Traffic Sources, Devices, Interaction, and Subscribers reports)
- Twitter: Log in to https://analytics.twitter.com. On Desktop, you need to click on an individual Tweet to specific data for that Tweet. On the Mobile app, tap the Tweet and then View Tweet Activity. There, you can check different metrics, such as Impressions, Total Engagements, Detail expands, Likes, App install attempts, App opens, Hashtag clicks, and more.
You will reap huge benefits in the future as well because machine learning would be more prevalent and businesses with the best data will enjoy the spotlight.
Trend 5# Employee Engagement and Volunteerism
Businesses have always undermined the potential of their employees and thus, keep ignoring them when it comes to engagement. Modern businesses understand how their employee can contribute to their brand image. Companies that have been on this journey (apart from customer engagement) are being able to provide massive quantities of fresh and relevant content for shoppers to use.
According to the 2017 Volunteerism Survey conducted by Deloitte, creating a culture of volunteerism may help in boosting morale, workplace atmosphere, and brand perception. When you empower your employees and believe in them, they give a lot back to your organization. The content generated by your employees on social media can help in building trust and reinforcing relationships. When they believe in your brand, they can make it more believable in the eyes of your customers as well.
Even doing things on a smaller scale, such as asking your employees to share blog content to their social networks can help in generating significant traffic and gaining more recognition from their friends and followers as well.
Trend 6# Storytelling on Social Media
In addition to recommending products and services via micro-influencers, storytelling is also picking up the pace sharply. Businesses that are sharing micro-videos and small posts daily or more frequently are winning more clicks and engagement. So, if you aren’t doing it already, get creative, bring out fresh and engaging stories that resonate with your audience and generate excitement about your brand’s offerings among the viewers.
Don’t make them feel like you are shouting to them to buy your products or use your services. Instead, simply show what your products and services are meant for and how they can help them. Show them the story behind your existence, the challenges you faced, the achievements you gained, and work culture.
Use real-life situations and problems to explain what leads you to a particular product or service. Ensure that after creating stories, you tie them to the bottom line and add CTAs.
While creating a story, you can follow FREYTAG’S PYRAMID.
Image Source: Harvard Business Review
Note that videos are not the only way to tell stories. One can also leverage the power of images and even text to share heartfelt stories. If we take a look at the article “The Irresistible Power of Storytelling as a Strategic Business Tool” at Harvard Business Review, one can easily gather that people are more likely to take action when they hear or read some heartfelt story related to your product, service, or cause.
Trend 7# Using UGC (User-Generated Content) to the company’s benefit
People find content more trustworthy and appealing when posted by their peers than the content created by the company itself. In fact, as per a HubSpot Report, 71% of shoppers are more likely to make a purchase when referred by peers at social media. When users promote your brand without getting paid, the content gets compelling and realistic by multiple folds. People attract to such content with extreme ease when compared to paid advertisements and even recommendations made by mega influencers. That’s why more than 86% of companies are leveraging UGC in their marketing strategy.
Blog posts, social posts, testimonials, reviews, videos, and images created by unpaid users are the most valuable things for businesses. So, focus on different ways to get more user-generated content. For instance:
- Running campaigns
- Designing contests
- Hosting events
- Adopting a selfless hashtag strategy
- Featuring customer’s photos in your stories, walls, and website (with consent)
- Encouraging the audience to tag your brand in social posts
- Interacting with your audience
Start incorporating these tactics into your social media strategies and you are going to be more than thankful to this decision in the future. It can do wonders for your brands when used appropriately.
Digital Detoxing is expected to be trending but might take a backseat in 2020 and for a couple of years
What’s more harmful to a business? The Unknown!!! While the number of social media users is increasing tremendously, the trend of digital detoxing is gradually seeping into people’s minds. In this digital age, people are getting more aware of how social media is stealing their peace of mind, precious time, and taking them away from their “Me Time”. Believe it or not, this is the truth of the modern lifestyle.
According to experts, to keep control of social media usage, a lot of people are making up their mind and some even are going down practically to use not more than two apps. While many of them think they are wasting too much time on social media, others have different issues like privacy concerns, commercialization, and negativity in the content.
The facts shared in a 2017 study “Meet gen z: the social generation” by Origin, Hill Holiday show very interesting figures with respect to digital detoxing. Just take a look.
Image Source: Origin, Hill Holiday
However, in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the behavior of people significantly. People are being ordered to stay at home and not to mingle with friends, neighbors, and colleagues by being physically close or paying personal visits, and therefore, things might turn out differently than what experts have predicted. To spend their leisure time and connect with loved and dear ones, people will be depending more time on social media.
While many businesses are shattered and falling apart in these challenging times, social media marketing can breathe life into your business brand and credibility. This is the prime time to show empathy to your customers and audience and build a strong connection with them through different social media platforms and strategies. Everything depends on your way of thinking; you can either make or break the impression of your brand during this pandemic that has sent chilling shivers to every corner of the world. So, decide it yourself what kind of future you want for your business.