Social media is changing at a rapid pace.
For example, just slightly a year and half ago, Stories was introduced on several major social media platforms. While Instagram Stories have more than 300 million active daily users, Snapchat Stories being viewed 10 billion times a day.
The new content format has proven to be an instant hit among buyers and brands, making it one of the most popular and in-use social media features.
To succeed on social media, it’s essential to stay ahead of the curve and understand the latest social media trends. To make it easy for you keep the pace with all these changes, we have put together a comprehensive social media trends report. In this report, you’ll learn about the top major trends to help you succeed on social media in 2018.
5 Major Changes that Took Place in Social Media Marketing in 2018
#1. Live Video
- Breaking news, concerts and conferences, and behind the scene content are the most popular among the audience.
- Streaming videos now account for more than two-third of the internet’s traffic.
Live video has completely taken over the social media real estate. Started in 2015, Live videos are now immensely appealing to brand audiences: 80% would rather watch live video from a brand than read a blog, and 82% prefer live video from a brand to social posts.
With 91% of all the live videos being streamed on Facebook Live, the social media platform offers brands the ability to engage with your their followers in real-time. The live broadcasts are coupled with reactions, comments, and viewer numbers which helps brands to prompt responses by asking and answering questions.
Brands like Sephora, Mashable, Starbucks, Bloomberg, and Kohls are using live streaming to share behind-the-scene videos, trending information, recent brand announcements, interviews, and to answer customer questions.
#2. Facebook is Changing
- Facebook makes major changes to its algorithm emphasising on more meaningful social interactions.
- The social media now measure post reach based on actual views.
The new year has brought a new Facebook feed for consumers as well as brands.
Following the above changes, Facebook will begin to calculate reach based on how many times a post enters a person’s screen from this week onwards. This will make organic reach of Pages more consistent with the way Facebook measures reach for ads.
#3. So is Instagram
- You can now schedule Instagram posts in advance.
- You can now add GIFs to your Instagram stories.
- Instagram Stories can now be published in type mode.
Facebook is introducing new changes not just in its apps but its subsidiaries as well. Facebook owned Instagram will now enable business profiles to schedule posts with third party tools having to go through the current process of getting an alert and manually posting.
Plus, Instagram has announced a new ‘Type’ mode for Stories. The feature will let users to share just text in Stories, without the need of a photo or video.
Moreover, the media sharing app has rolled out GIF stickers that can be added or pinned to videos and photos in Stories.
#4. Chatbots are taking over
- The new AI wave has restroked chatbot marketing’s sails.
- 95% consumers believe that ‘customer service’ is the major beneficiary of chatbots.
- 75% of business said that AI will be actively implemented in their companies within the next three years.
The rise of social messaging has given a pump to chatbots.
2016 saw Facebook welcoming third-party chat bots on its Messenger platform. As Facebook Messenger grew, the number of bots in Messenger also grew — from 33,000 to more than 100,000 in just a year. There are also chatbots in WeChat, Slack, Viber, iMessage, Kik and many other platforms.
Not just selling products, chatbots have also found their use in social selling.
#5. Social advertising is on peak
- Facebook bans all ads for cryptocurrency.
- Carousel ads can now be seen in Instagram Stories.
- Snapchat’s ad automation will automatically attach deep links to brand campaigns.
As Facebook is becoming more strict towards paid ads, it further looking to lock down the ways its platform is being misused. In an attempt to save its audience from getting duped by scammers, Facebook will ban all ads promoting cryptocurrency.
While the social giant is gearing up against paid traffic, its brain child Instagram is helping brands make their ads look better in the Stories feed. The photo-and-video app is rolling out its own version of carousel ads in its Stories that can include three consecutive photos or videos instead of the standard one.
Snapchat is right behind its arch rival in rolling out new ad features. Thanks to ad automation, the image messaging app now automatically create the deep links for advertisers’ campaigns so that swiping up on an ad will immediately open a brand’s app.
The Bottom Line
The social media world is changing everyday, every minute, and every second. While it’s impossible to predict how the social media marketing landscape will change over the course of a year, but marketers should keep an eye on the above evolving social media elements to woo their customers with these new trends.