Social Media Trends to Watch in 2019

Social media platforms have evolved into full-blown communication channels, causing more brands to rely on them to reach their target audience.

Here are 8 tips to stay current and relevant on social media in 2019.

1. Rebuilding Trust.

Despite the continued growth of social media platforms each year, users are cautious of the information they find on social media and marketers may be contributing to the situation. The younger generations have little tolerance for marketing that doesn’t come across as genuine.

Brands need to connect with their audience on a meaningful level, looking for ways to build customer trust. When you focus on ways to authentically connect with your audience in a way that highlights your humanity, you WIN!

2. Storytelling.

Social media’s popularity is rooted in that it allows us to share our life experiences. We get to tell our stories and get a glimpse of everyone else’s lives through our news feeds in real time.

Social media is adapting new ways to allow people to tell their stories and share their narrative with the world. Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook are embracing this trend, and it’s changing the way we consume social media content = VIDEOS.

Videos open the door for brands to share real stories of their own, which will inspire audiences to try out their product. By putting out your own video content, you control the conversation. Video storytelling feels real, immediate and personal, but it also requires brands to be more creative and thoughtful to capture their target audience.

3. Creativity Over Quantity.

The threshold for gaining customer attention and trust has grown dramatically. Marketers who hope to gain consumer consideration must be willing to go the extra mile in creating engaging content. Would-be customers are instantly dismissing subpar messages. Before flooding social media with posts on the newest #trendwave, create a message that will promote your brand AND attract your target market.

Brands must be purposeful and creative with the messages they share. Sharing quality content, even less often will have a greater impact than sharing frequent content that comes across as generic and uninspired.

4. Personal Branding.

Don’t hide behind a logo! Personal branding is a MUST on social media. Putting a real, human face to a brand is key in building trust and loyalty, especially for small, relatively unknown businesses. Personal branding will naturally connect customers to businesses and make the company seem more relatable. Giving the public an up-close view of the company’s leader can strengthen its brand reputation.

5. Influencer Marketing.

Influencer marketing continues to grow on social media platforms. Influencers are social media users who have gathered a following and community around themselves. Their influence in their circle makes them incredibly effective as salespeople because we inherently trust the people we follow on social media.

Much like personal branding, influencer marketing gives a human voice to brands. While influencer marketing is less direct than traditional forms of advertising, it can create real ways of connecting brands with customers.

6. Selfie Videos.

Businesses need to take note: viewers spend hours watching friends’ videos on Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook. Brands would be wise to look for ways to incorporate first-person “selfie video” content as part of their marketing strategy.

Traditional advertising can be a turn off to younger audiences, who are more cautious about their purchases and want a more authentic experience with their brands. Selfie videos can help brands seem more relatable and trustworthy.

7. Social Ad Targeting.

Customers have come to expect brands to tailor special offers and discounts to their wants and needs. To keep up with expectations, businesses need to step up their game when it comes to targeted advertising. But marketers will need to find a balance between being too pushy and being able to offer personalized advertising that will genuinely interest customers.

Nearly every social media platform offers some level of audience filtering when you opt to pay for advertising. These options range from simple geographic targeting to advanced filters that refine audiences into highly specific segments.

8. Know Your Social Platforms.

Carefully consider which social media platforms to focus on, as each platform tends to be used by different groups. Over 80% of Pinterest users are female, and more than 50% of those are from the United States. If targeting American women is your goal, posting on Pinterest could help speak to that group.

Snapchat users are younger than those who use Facebook. And career-focused professionals spend more time on LinkedIn. Brands that use multiple platforms need to decide where to post content and where to focus the majority of their marketing efforts. Multi-platform presence is important, but becoming an active expert on 1-2 social media platforms is much more valuable to your business.

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