We are almost into September, which means the slide down until the end of 2019 and this means a look back social media trends & how users actually use social media.
(Scroll down for the TL;DR version if you are short on time)
For the first time, social media users have now surpassed 3.5 billion users (up 7.8% in the past year!) We will be having a look at the data collected by Hootsuite & how small businesses can use this actionable data to tailor their social media strategies.
Social media is a channel that always changes at pace but now users are beginning to question the value social media networks provide & are now seeking more meaningful ways to engage.
Consumers want to be treated like individuals not demographicsHootsuite Social Media Trends 2019 Report
Can We Trust Social Media?
60% of people no longer trust social media companies, trust in Facebook, alone, dropped by 66%.
People are becoming more skeptical with social media & this has changed the rules of the game with people turning from influencers & media endorsements to friends, families & acquaintances. People are taking the time to look at what their immediate circle are investing in rather than looking for the latest big celeb endorsement, which most of the time is faked.
‘Fake News’ has turned users towards the traditional and trusted journalism outlets & local news sources but 71% agree that social media should do more to support high quality journalism.
Communities over Numbers
Brands are learning to focus less on maximising reach & focus more on generating transparent, quality engagements by sharing more insightful & researched content.
As users become more wary of who they are talking to on social media, more brands are leveraging their own internal experts as brand advocates instead of relying on ‘influencers’ to push their products. Brands are becoming more human towards their customer base.
Come Together with a Hashtag
Because brands are wanting to create more communities, the best thing to do is to come up with a hashtag that represents your brand. Create a short, easy-to-remember, branded hashtag that brings your community together around a common interest.
Hashtags should be used to align users around a brand value or purpose rather than just push a product or service.
Time to Tell Your Story
The rise of stories have grown up to 15x faster than most social media elements, but this begs the question: ‘Will the news feed one day be an endangered species?
In the past year, 64% of marketers have either implemented Instagram stories into their social strategy or they plan to do so.
Stories are embodying the pivot that is happening in social media from a test-based platform that was originally designed for desktop use to a truly mobile-only networks that enable users to capture in-the-moment experiences.
Stories can be as easy to create as you choose, so there’s a low barrier to entry for any team’s skill set. Share content weekly & at different times to see what works.
Story content should reflect the unique look & feel that stories possess: Raw, unedited and live action!
Upping the Ads Game
Since the social media algorithm changes meaning it became harder for businesses to show up in News Feeds organically, marketers turned to paid advertising.
Now 1 in every 4 Facebook Page use paid media & in the US Facebook accounts for 23% of total digital ad spending.
However the rise in popularity has meant a rise in prices & it is becoming increasingly harder to be noticed.
The average clickthrough rate costs have increase by 61% & the cost per thousand impressions (CPM) has increased by 112%. This means marketers are needing to think outside of the box to stand out from the oversaturated advertising market.
Spotify & Netflix are two examples, that are leading the way with creative social ads that are at once personalised and entertaining rather than a bland banner ad squeezed into a news feed.
The end goal is to generate user discussion and engagement rather than simply broadcast an ad at an audience.
- Users are craving a personal experience and with the distrust of social media platforms growing, brands need to step up their game and talk to their audiences like humans rather than numbers.
- Create communities using simple branded hashtags that are easy to remember & get your audience talking
- Tell your story using Instagram / Facebook / Snapchat etc. Show that your brand is human with behind-the-scenes footage, talk to staff and grow engagement
- Rethink & up your advertising game. Think of creative, personalised posts that stand from the standard banner ads shoved into a news feed.
Social Media, may have its ‘issues’ but it is a growing platform & with 46% of the total global population on some sort of platform, integrating social media into your strategy is key. Not sure where to start? Click here to download FREE resources & to get in touch with our social media experts who can guide you towards a social media strategy that works for your business. We don’t believe in copy-paste strategies!