If you manage social networks, you might have already realized that a rather complicated 2018 is coming up when it comes to Social Media. You don’t need to be a psychic to know that. You are surely living it in your own flesh. Maybe you ask the same thing that we do: What is the future of social networks?
Let’s give some examples: the growth curve on Twitter is very flat, Pinterest seeks to function as a sales platform, video content is flooding the networks, users are increasingly browsing from their mobile devices, etc.
Nothing is the same and what is coming is a matter of debate. For that reason, Postcron wants to help you discover the 10 predictions for 2018 regarding Social Media Marketing taking as a source of information the best professionals.
Let’s go for it!
#1 Pinterest: from inspiration to action once and for all
In 2017, Social Media Week published an article about the future of Pinterest and highlighted this phrase: “From inspiration to action.” In 2018, the action goes through higher intelligence and efficiency in the visual and keyword search.
We are not the ones saying it. It says Kate Ahl (owner of Pinterest management company Simple Pin Media) himself for Social Media Examiner. The goal is to improve the platform as an advertising medium for brands (being able to pay for “promoted pins”) and get their users to move from consideration to purchase.
This is added to the tendency to use video content in the pins so that Community Managers and anyone who manages social networks should learn what kind of videos work best on this platform.
#2: A lot of attention to the growth of LinkedIn Ads
LinkedIn already has approximately more than 500 million monthly users. Its growth is compared with Snapchat in 2016 and Instagram in 2017. Azriel Ratz, CEO of Ratz Pack Media, says that in 2018 LinkedIn plans to launch video ads, giving even more strength to its advertising platform: LinkedIn Ads.
Pay close attention to the next changes of what would be the first business platform to have video commercials.
#3 Snapchat with redesigned interface, Stories and new owners
Carlos Gil is a Marketing Executive winner of the Snapchat Storyteller prize. His boldest prediction has to do with the purchase of Snapchat by a large media group and media such as Disney or NBC Universal. We will see if it is fulfilled.
In 2017, he also predicted that Snapchat would be mixed with live video functionality. That didn’t happen, but he stands firm in his conviction: in 2018, we will be able to see Snapchat Stories out of its mobile app (similar to Facebook and Instagram Stories). Will this prediction be fulfilled this time?
#4 Facebook will deepen its bet on Video content
It is easy to realize the strategic movements of Facebook. Just go through the news feed: most of the content is audiovisual. In 2017, Facebook rolled out its own video on demand service: Facebook Watch (only available for users in the United States).
For Michael Stelzner, founder, and CEO of Social Media Examiner, in 2018, that service will be expanded for all people and Facebook pages.
This specialist also ensures that Facebook will implement new functions for video creators, greatly facilitating the exposure and discovery of brands. This includes, in Michael’s words, “traditional television arrangements or even starting your own cable television network.”
#5 Retargeting as a key technique for customer experience with brands (“Customer journey”)
The prediction is the following: brands will need to create more effective strategies in their social networks and in the field of content marketing to achieve better results in the “journey” of the client (that is, around the path, that it makes in its link with the brand).
Jason Van Orden (consultant and strategy in Marketing) is the author of this statement. It happens that the cost of acquiring prospects and new clients are increasing. So the most convenient thing is to optimize each action that the client performs and to make an automated follow-up of their relations with the brand.
Without a doubt, it is not the same to sell a product or service to someone who has already visited the website and was even about to buy a product than someone who never showed interest in the brand. Retargeting techniques allow companies to display their messages at the right time and in the correct order. It will no longer be just a matter of capturing leads through email marketing but across perfectly segmented advertisements.
#6 The brands will direct their efforts to YouTube to generate leads
This prediction is related to the previous point. The increase in advertising costs on Facebook and Instagram will make the brands direct their efforts to other content platforms. YouTube is one of them and the most promising in the opinion of Sunny Lenarduzzi, a strategist in Social Media, online business and creation of video content.
Undoubtedly, YouTube Marketing is an unexplored resource in its entirety regarding attracting leads or prospects. It has been a long time since it stopped being a place to host videos. It is much more than that: it is a site to connect with the audience and generate long-term links (without the need to pay for advertising). Don’t lose sight of it!
#7 Twitter: between being and not being
Mark Schaefer is an important consultant in Marketing. According to his prediction, Twitter will be reborn, transformed and will be an essential player in the field of Marketing. What are the reasons? According to the affirmations of this specialist, there are some positive signs in the growth of the users and the income to Twitter.
Also, there is a massive and committed public of around 330 million people. That audience places Twitter as the alternative advertising option to Facebook, Instagram, and Adwords.
Now, this is a prediction. But it is not the only one. There are those who indicate the opposite. In Forbes, Mark Gale, also a specialist in Strategic Communication and Marketing, headlines a note like this: Why Twitter is not the future of Marketing.
Let’s see what the reasons to affirm what many think are (of course, Mark Gale is not the only one who thinks that Twitter does not have too much future as it is seen now):
Says Mark Gale:
“As a business owner, the personal value that Twitter gives me continues to decline. The domain of celebrities has made Twitter more a megaphone for celebrities and less useful to me as an information and communication tool. Twitter once connected me directly with my colleagues and with information that I could not get anywhere else. “It does not do that anymore.”
What do you think?
#8 Instagram will become the best option for brands
This prediction is not the product of intuition. The statistics support it, says Brooke B. Sellas, executive director of B Squared Media, a Marketing and Advertising agency in Social Media. In July of 2017, 15 million companies used Instagram. This number represents almost twice as many as those that used Instagram in March 2017 (8 million). In terms of advertising, Instagram is preparing to be a platform of choice for companies and advertisers. While it will not be able to replace Facebook in the short term, it is positioning itself as an important space to get closer to the audience and achieve increasingly effective brand awareness.
#9 The content in Video will be the king
Carmen Collins is the leader in Social Media of the famous Cisco agency. She predicts something that we are experiencing every day. In light of the question: how will social media change in 2018? She responds: “Live video, produced video, Snapchat video, Instagram video and YouTube video.”
The videos are flooding all social networks. In fact, the “Stories” are born by the demand of people to be able to share their life in short and simple videos. For brands, it won’t be enough to create a video. They must also publish that audiovisual content in the most channels to achieve maximum exposure.
If you want to know how to create Video Marketing campaigns with a low budget, visit this blog post.
#10 The triumph of brands will depend on the creation of authentic communities
Beyond advertising spending, the real strength of brands will lie in their ability to create real communities and genuine trust. It will not be enough to promote content and spend money if that material does not reach the heart of the public.
This is said by Cassie Roma, general manager of content marketing at New Zealand Media & Entertainment. In relation to this and according to their prediction, in 2018 the successful social channels will be the ones that put the focus on the content that their users see instead of focusing on the ads.
Each day that passes users are less open to marketing and seek to engage in more real and in-depth conversations with brands. Facebook is already aware of this news. Mark Zuckerberg announced at the end of the year that his purpose is to “fix Facebook.”
“One of our big focus areas for 2018 is to make sure that the time we all spend on Facebook is a time well spent … I am changing the aim that I give to our teams by indicating that they should focus on helping you find the relevant content so that you can have more meaningful social interactions”. Mark Zuckerberg
Okay. We have reached the end of this article! You already have in your head the 10 predictions about the future of social networks for 2018 by the best professionals of Marketing. But we want to hear you! Do you agree with these predictions? Do you have others that you want to share with us? We invite you to open a more interesting debate for those who manage social networks. Start now by leaving your comment!