We have come to the end of another year. It’s time to have a look at the trends for 2020 so that you can prepare your social media strategy for the year ahead.
Glossy, staged content, clickbaity headlines have had their day. People are looking for authentic content from the people and brands they follow. They are looking for honest conversations. Authenticity drives trust, loyalty and ultimately sales.
Being authentic doesn’t mean, you have to post on the go and in real-time only. Planning and scheduling your content is okay, you can’t be on social media all the time. Being strategic with your content, and automating it allows time for engagement with your followers.
2.Private chats & communities
In 2019 we have seen most of the social media platforms encouraging their users to have private discussions either in direct messages or in groups. The latest addition of Threads on Instagram is an example of this. As a small business owner, how can you encourage this? Is there an opportunity for you to create your own Facebook group?
You can also invite people to engage with you privately on Instagram. Stories is brilliant for this: ask questions, invite them to interact with you with the stickers, polls, etc. so that you can have more intimate conversations with your followers.
According to a study by Cisco, by 2022, 82 % of all online content will be video content. Use video for storytelling, for thought leadership, for adding value, for showing how your products work. For makers, sharing a timelapse video of you making your products works brilliantly.
We can also show behind the scenes in our businesses or share our life outside of our businesses. What problems are we having? What makes us excited? For small business owners, video can be a great tool for connecting with their followers on a personal level.
4. User-generated content (UGC)
These raw, unpolished videos or photos that are shared by your followers are very valuable because followers find them more trustworthy. UGC looks native to the platform and therefore doesn't look like a sales pitch. Even big brands started using UGC on their platforms.
IGTV will continue to grow. If you go the Explore page on Instagram, you can see how much emphasis is given to IGTV. The thumbnail of the IGTV video is much bigger compared to the photos on the page.
Last week I attended a workshop run by Paula from Marketing Vision and Helen Perry from Not About The Kids. Helen gave us a great tip about starting a series of a theme on IGTV. Consider what you want to share with your audience and create a series of videos. If you are looking for inspiration, Helen has great tips on her blog.
6.Removal of Number of Likes
Instagram has been testing the removal of likes in several countries. If likes no longer matter, what will? Deeper interactions and conversations with followers will become more important. Are people commenting on our posts, are they saving them for future reference? We will need to think about how we can create content that will enable these.
7. Social commerce
Social referral to retail e-commerce sites has grown 110% in two years, outpacing all other referral channels.** The primary players in social commerce are Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook. In the UK, there are currently 8.4 million British consumers shopping via social media and the number of UK businesses selling products through social media is set to double in 6 months. *** If you have an e-commerce business and haven't started advertising yet, there can be a huge potential for you.
In the ever-evolving world of social media, we need to embrace the changes. Here's to an amazing 2020!
*** Paypal data via Social Chain
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