Social media has major players that already seem as if they’ve been around forever and aren’t going anywhere: Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, to name just a few. But, even with these familiar faces, social also benefits from a huge amount of fast-paced innovation.
The social media scene of 2016 was very different from 2015, and 2017 will make its own mark.
Through it all, businesses that use social media will need to stay agile and aware of the changing trends. Adapting your digital marketing strategy to adjustments in your customers’ consumption patterns will help ensure that your social message is one that cuts through the clutter.
In 2017, keep an eye out for these emerging social media trends:
1) Brands Will Use Even More Live Video
Periscope’s annual recap included an amazing fact – users watch more than 100 years’ worth of video on the app every single day. In an effort to get in on the action, both Instagram and Twitter launched their own live video functionality in the waning months of 2016. Livestreaming of events and customer service will become even more common in 2017.
2) Chat Bots Will Mature …
Chat Bots – AIs that simulate a responsive conversation with users – have arguably been around since the heyday of America Online in the 1990s. Never before, however, have they been as versatile and adaptable as they are today. By connecting across multiple Web properties and networks, these bots will increasingly offer a customized, value-added experience.
3) … and Augmented Reality Might, Too
What goes up must come down, and nothing proved this better than the meteoric rise and fall of the Pokémon Go app. Daily user count has plunged dramatically – in the UK, from 1.7 million to just 50,000. Still, it showed a tantalizing glimpse of a world of location-based, micro-targeted offers and inspired many brands to think about providing unique experiences to their customers.
4) Mobile Advertising Will Be More Competitive Than Ever
As industry titans like Google prioritize mobile, others are falling in line. 80% of ad revenues at Facebook now come from mobile ads, and even Twitter – troubled by a long period finding its footing – is seeing increased ad revenue on mobile’s strength. The preeminence of mobile means greater demand for compelling, visual advertising coupled with responsive landing pages.
It was not that long ago when social media was seen mostly as a way of amplifying conventional Web content like blogs and images. It still serves this function, but more businesses have begun to explore its unique capacity for connecting with customers where and when they are ready to be engaged. 2017 will see the continuation of this journey in many exciting new social media trends.