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This article was written by Alex Sixt, an entrepreneur NEXT, who is supported by an assembly expert. Would you like to make your company future-proof with on-demand know-how? The entrepreneur NEXT has the expert solutions that your company needs to be successful in a developing market.
Regardless of whether you are an influencer, a brand, or use social media personally, it is undeniable that social media has developed a lot in the past ten years. Since its humble beginnings in the form of AIM, Friendster and MySpace, social media has developed into an incredibly profitable platform for brands and influencers.
More recently, the personal aspect of social media has slowly been overshadowed by news feeds filled with branded and buyable content. COVID-19 has accelerated this change even further as society has turned to digital communications for health precautions to find and shop for entertainment. Although these changes occurred quickly, the impact of the pandemic on user habits will change social media for the future.
In a post-COVID world, keeping an eye on even more changing pieces of the big social media puzzle can seem overwhelming, but today's upcoming social media trends are key to the success of your brand tomorrow and beyond. Below are the key trends for the future of social media to help you create content that stands out from the endless news feeds.
Focus on community.
In a world where people have to be half a meter from another, a digital community is something that users are desperately looking for. Communication and creating a sense of inclusion are critical to building a thriving social media community for the future. Facebook has taken the lead with these groups and even announced that they are prioritizing content from groups that users interact with frequently. Groups offer the advantage of word of mouth and their credibility. Users read a friend's post 16 times more often than a brand. Some of the biggest brands like ASOS and Peloton have already created successful groups that encourage fans to interact with other members who share the same interests and have conversations about the brand.
When building a social media community for your brand, try tactics that encourage conversation between members and promote a sense of community. For example, if you give a little insight into your product or regularly ask for feedback from your followers, you can build a relationship between members and the brand.
By creating a successful community, you also get insights into future trends and can adapt to the wishes of your brand consumers. To prepare for the future of social media and your industry, a community is a valuable asset that your brand is constantly evolving.
Related: A breakdown of all major social media platforms for business owners
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Customer service tool.
The days of talking to customer service representatives and seemingly being put on hold for hours are over (who likes Muzak anyway?). As the future of the world turns to digital, consumers expect brands to become aware of their needs and questions in the comments: A recent study found that more than 60 percent of customers who complain about social media expect a Response within an hour.
Providing excellent customer service across social media platforms can be tedious, but has proven to be a much cheaper way to solve problems. Solving a problem on social media is 83 percent cheaper than solving it via call center interaction. However, the pressure to be vigilant doesn't mean that you have to cover every platform yourself around the clock. Try to split social media coverage into layers within your team, or hire a social media listening expert to help.
When it comes to service, consumers expect a personalized, human response rather than a copy and paste response. Before you develop a strategy for future customer service on social media, define your voice and tone so that the answers match your brand and evolve across platforms.
Related: 5 trends that will change customer service in the next 5 years
Increase engagement for video and live stream.
Video and live stream content have seen a surge in popularity recently and will continue to take the social media world by storm. Users enjoy the interactive aspect of video more than regular posts, and video content can be ten times more valuable than a photo. By 2022, live video is expected to grow 15 times and account for 17 percent of total Internet traffic.
Adding video content to your marketing strategy doesn't take hours of work. The good news is that most editing can be done directly from your phone or laptop. There are several apps and tools available to help you create high quality social media content right from your desk (or couch, like most of us remote workers).
Despite the fact that video content performs better than other social media posts, you should exercise caution before creating it. Before recording your content, ask yourself what the purpose of this video is. What story am I telling? Giving your video storytelling element is key to differentiate yourself and increase your contribution from a hundred to a thousand likes.
Related Topics: From Consumer to Creator: Three Reasons Why Now Is The Best Time To Double Your Video Marketing Plan
Tap your niche.
Although mainstream platforms like Instagram and Twitter continue to dominate the social media space, niche social media networks are becoming increasingly popular with consumers. Niche platforms are networks that have been created for a selected audience, especially those that have a very specific interest outside the mainstream.
Niche networks like Twitch (used by avid video gamers) provide an excellent environment for introducing your brand to a new audience due to less brand competition. Their reach also increases in these smaller networks compared to Facebook with more than 60 million company pages and less chance of reaching the right users.
Before you dive into a niche platform, you should research which platform your brand is well-targeted on and where you can achieve the greatest success. With the right platform, your brand will attract the attention of new target groups and help you gain more followers in the future.
Related: 3 reasons to pay attention to social niche networks
Create short-lived content.
Ephemeral content is defined as rich media (mainly videos and photos) that can only be accessed for a short period of time, e.g. B. an Instagram story, and the nature of the short-lived content is advantageous in itself. The shortened life cycle creates a feeling of FOMO (fear of missing out)
In a recent study, 62 percent of people say they are more interested in a brand or product after seeing it in stories.
By integrating short-lived content into your social media strategy, you can stand out in the future as users continue to use their cell phones as the preferred method of scrolling through platforms. Ephemeral content adapts perfectly to mobile screens and allows you to post more often without clogging your own page, but still achieving great engagement. Add an interactive element, e.g. B. a sticker to further increase your story engagement. They have been proven to improve video story performance in 83 percent of cases.
Another great advantage of short-lived content is the ability to easily share user-generated content (USG). Recent studies have shown that almost half of customers (48 percent) say that user-generated content is a great way to discover new products. By sharing USG with your short-lived content, you have access to empower your customers and attract new audiences to your brand.
Related: 3 Ways to Use Instagram Stories to Strengthen Your Brand
The future can be an unknown and intimidating place, especially for brands that hope to stay relevant on social media as the world around us evolves rapidly. By integrating these trends into your social media strategy, your brand grows with the changes and experiences success in an unsafe landscape.
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