Social media marketing is one of the most powerful tools companies have at their disposal today. If you have $5 and an internet connection, you can get your content in front of thousands of viewers with the click of a button. But while these platforms make marketing more accessible than ever, there’s still a fine art to good social media marketing.
Staying up-to-date on the latest social media marketing trends can help you get the best ROI on these campaigns. Read on to learn what to expect with social media marketing this year and what consumers are looking for from their favorite brands.
1. Short Video Content
It should come as no surprise that video has been and will continue to be one of the most important types of content for digital marketing. In fact, experts predict that by this year, more than 82 percent of all consumer internet traffic will come from videos. What’s new this year is the length of popular video content.
Platforms like Vine and Snapchat led the charge on short-form video content a few years ago, but these days, TikTok is at the front of the pack. Consumers love the instant gratification and message efficiency of these videos, which are usually less than a minute long. Companies that want to stay with the times in social media marketing need to cut the fluff and keep their video content short and sweet.
2. Live Videos
In addition to pre-filmed video content, live videos have gained a lot of traction in recent years. Live videos give viewers a glimpse into the real lives of their internet icons and provide a spontaneous, genuine atmosphere. Live video can also be a great way to engage viewers since it has a unique character that taps into the FOMO many viewers experience.
Scheduling live video events can be a great way to up your content engagement in 2022. You may do a live Q&A session with followers, walk viewers through your company headquarters, or show off features of a new product. You should also live stream portions of any in-person events you do to increase their reach.
3. Branded Filters
Filters were another of the social media revolutions that came from Snapchat. These photo overlays can be anything from an interactive lens that makes the user look like a dog to a simple banner message at the bottom of the screen. Some filters even alter face shape or add virtual makeup.
Savvy brands have started to create custom filters that allow customers to show off their brand loyalty. These filters can be geo-tagged, meaning that only users within a certain location radius can see and use the filters. They can also be combined with exciting photo effects, such as a MAC or Sephora-branded filter that gives a user a full face of virtual makeup.
Influencers are another social media trend that is continuing to pick up steam this year. Social media influencers are content creators who have large platforms of followers. Companies can sponsor these influencers or send them free products in return for those creators promoting their brand to their followers.
In 2022, you can expect to see influencer marketing taking more of a lead in the social media marketing strategy of many companies. Unlike traditional paid content, influencer marketing takes advantage of the parasocial connections and trust followers have with their favorite influencers. Most influencer marketing deals involve guaranteed post-reach metrics.
5. Audio Content
Audio content has seen an enormous explosion in the last several years. Platforms like Spotify and Audible have taken off, and there are more than 2 million podcasts as of this writing. Social media platforms and marketing teams are looking for creative ways to use this interest to grow post engagement.
Recently, Twitter has added a new Moments format that allows users to create audio-only content. Spotify is also expanding outside the realm of music to include audiobooks, podcasts, and other audio content that users can enjoy on the go. Social media marketing teams need to turn their attention to an audio-only format that’s easy for consumers to access no matter where they are.
6. Social Media Shopping
Social media platforms have been moving more and more to a one-stop-shop over the previous years. Social media sites have become platforms to organize events, share information, and stay up to date on the latest news. And in recent years, these platforms have started to dip into the e-commerce world.
Social media e-commerce has recently expanded to more B2C functionality. Small businesses can now market and sell products directly through social media platforms. Taking advantage of this convenience can help to improve conversion rates for their social media marketing plan.
7. Paid Ad Placement
There’s a lot to be said for organic reach on social media, but there’s no substitute for paid content. A viral video may seem like the key to success, but the truth is you’re about as likely to win the lottery as you are to have a post go viral on its own. Paying for ad placement guarantees you’ll get your content in front of an interested audience.
When you’re creating your paid social media ads, try to make the content feel natural and valuable to your customers. It’s also a good idea to narrow your audience to your target customer profile. Limiting this audience can help ensure that you get a higher ROI on your ad, since only potentially interested users will see your ad.
8. More Memes
Memes are one of the biggest and most nebulous parts of social media life. New memes pop up, go viral for what seems like five minutes, and then die out just as quickly. Jumping on these meme trains can be a great way to connect with your followers, but it can be a very tricky thing to manage well.
One of the key aspects of a good meme is that it must feel spontaneous and organic. Memes that are masquerading as sales pitches come off like Steve Buscemi in 30 Rock. Jump on the meme bandwagon, but as a general rule, don’t post anything you wouldn’t feel comfortable posting to your personal social media pages.
9. Interactive Content
While mindless scrolling can be nice, viewers want content they can engage with. Social media platforms are providing more opportunities for viewers to interact with content. In particular, quizzes, polls, and Q&A sessions are all a great way to let your viewers communicate with your brand.
In addition to getting your viewers involved, this sort of interactive content offers great opportunities for data mining. You can use the information you get from even seemingly random content to get a better idea of what your customers connect with. You can even run polls asking for customer opinions about new products they’d like to see before you begin development on these projects.
10. AI Optimization
Artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the most exciting fields of computer development today. Although we’re a long way from Star Trek-level computer intelligence, AI has made some excellent progress in the last few years. AI can be a great tool for predicting customer behavior, establishing engagement patterns, and optimizing your content.
Many social media platforms are starting to incorporate AI into their data analytics tools already. You can see which sorts of posts perform well, as well as when you should post to get the best response. Use these analytics to target future posts and develop content for upcoming campaigns.
11. Multi-Platform Marketing
When you’re deciding where to allocate marketing resources, it can be easy to focus your efforts on one platform. Given that nearly 70 percent of all American adults have a Facebook page, you may be tempted to direct more of your marketing there. But the truth is companies can’t afford to have a single-platform marketing strategy anymore.
Different segments of your target customer group will be on different platforms, and each platform gives you different format advantages. Focus your photo and video content on visual platforms like Instagram, TikTok, Pinterest, and Facebook. Direct text-based content to LinkedIn, Twitter, and other such platforms.
12. Focus on Quality
The fast-paced nature of internet culture can often make us feel like we have to crank out as much content as fast as possible. After all, the more we post, the more impressions and engagement we get. But the truth is that consumers these days are fed up with mass-produced content that they can’t connect with.
Instead of making content quantity your priority, focus on creating quality content. Pay attention to what your users engage with, and ask them what they’d like to see more of in the future. Try to create real value in your content, and don’t be afraid to put a personal touch that clients can connect with.
13. Customer Service Via Social Media
Customer service has become a bigger priority for social media marketing managers. Not only are consumers using social media platforms to shop more, they are also turning to these platforms to reach out to their favorite brands. Your team needs to be prepared to interface with customers through your social media platforms on a daily basis.
First of all, make sure you have all your company information on your social media profiles, including your website, phone number, hours, and email address. It’s also a good idea to respond to customer messages as quickly as possible. When customers comment on your posts, respond to them as soon as you can, whether the comment is positive or negative.
14. More Online Communities
One of the beautiful things about the internet age is the opportunities it gives us to connect with people who share our interests. No interest is too niche for the internet, and small communities have started popping up around everything from sock puppet burlesque performances to dried fruit. Savvy social media marketers will want to take advantage of these niche communities in the coming year.
Whatever your business focus is, you can bet that there’s a niche group (or twenty) for it on social media. Find these groups and get involved, making sure to keep your content there organic and natural. Even if you don’t post, listen to what group members talk about, how they interact, and which posts get the most traffic.
15. Greater Accountability
In the last few years, we’ve all become more aware of the real-life impact social media has on all of us. For one thing, many people have found that their social media usage has a profound impact on their mental health. And there has also been a lot of controversy over the role different social media accounts and platforms have played in sociopolitical events.
Going into 2022, users are looking for more accountability from their social media. Be sure to listen to the feedback you’re getting from your community and respond appropriately when controversy arises. Acknowledge when mistakes are made, take steps to remedy any hurt that has been caused, and apologize before you begin working to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
Discover More Social Media Marketing Trends
Social media marketing is a fast-paced industry that seems to change every day. This year, we’re going to see the continued growth of influencer marketing, short-form and live videos, and meme culture. Focus on quality in your posts, connect with niche communities, and don’t underestimate the value of paid marketing.
If you’d like to learn more about social media marketing trends, check out the rest of our site at DesignLoud Agency. We use data to drive results and help you build relationships with your customers. Discuss your goals with us today and start looking like a rock star in front of your boss and your customers.