Social Media Trends
Ringing in the New Year brings promises of resolutions and change. In its tradition, goals are made to become better or to work harder for something, whether it is losing weight, quitting smoking or talking to an old friend.
Similarly, marketing in the digital world has some of the same expectations to reach more consumers each year. With the ever-constant shift in social media trends, the way that we view marketing products and services will drastically change, as companies and brands strive to meet the demands and challenges of our continuously expanding digital platforms.
Here are just a few social media trends to anticipate for the year 2014.
1. Fostering Relationships
The importance of developing and maintaining a community base will be one of the most important tactics used in the upcoming year. With everyone jumping on the Internet bandwagon for marketing, loyalty will be more valuable than ever. To weed out spam and blatant hoaxes, niche communities who search for viewers with common interests will foster and thrive. As long as the company promotes honest interaction with customers, they will maintain the right amount of engagement to continue to build brand loyalty.
2. Content Seeking
Along with creating niches, there will be increased movement towards connecting brands to customers. Instead of a viewing seeking out a brand, a brand will find and target an individual. This social media trend will rule out third parties and focus more on actual customer-brand relationships.
3. Lending an Ear
In an effort to promote sales, analytics and reports will ultimately drive information for companies. There will be a stronger connection with social listening solutions to assist in better reaching client bases. From monitoring these trends, the company can boost their sales and strive to become a more customer-conscious initiative.
4. Fan Testimony
With all of the different efforts to build and maintain consumer-to-company relationships, this technique will top some of the best social media trends for 2014. By inviting the company’s number most ardent fans to provide a testimony about their products digitally will boost brand advocacy.
5. On Cloud 9
Naturally, personalization will continue to develop to meet the needs of individuals and daily life functionality. With the cloud economy booming and creating what Donal Daly, CEO of TAS Group, calls the “software ecosystem,” personal attention and awareness will become a key marketing tool.
6. Anticipate Action
When it comes to exploring customer needs, Google Now and FourSquare are cornering the market for the start of 2014. Having the ability to predict what a user wants before it is asked, also known as anticipatory computing, will help provide recommendations and a fully personalized digital experience. This is definitely something that companies will use to boost engagement and brand loyalty.
7. Getting Real
Real-time marketing will become more commonplace to create a more authentic experience. Since it will serve as a more continuous process, this social media trend will diminish obvious ad campaigns and focus on a more unique experience, filled with relevant content and updates.
8. Sneak Peeks and Teasers
With the ever-growing popularity of platforms such as Vine and Instagram, micro videos will be one of the most innovative of social media trends for 2014. These short videos will provide small hints as a marketing strategy to advertise more subtly. For example, this would be a great opportunity for an auto parts company to flash images of Ford parts to advertise their new products. Therefore, this will put a new spin on advertising in order to find a new way to market content.
9. The Disappearing Act
Similarly, content will soon become harder to track and analyze with privacy-driven platforms such as Snapchat. If the digital world continues to follow this path of privacy, marketers will have to develop and invent new ways to reach their consumers. This will become a big challenge for marketing campaigns and attempts to generate niche markets and communities.
10. Digital Noise
Not quite as severe as the Y2K bug threats; however, hoaxes and spamming will be on the rise. These have been digital issues in the past, but because everything is now going digital, this form of attention-grabbing will be more prevalent. Since it is so hard to gain attention with so much digital noise, consumers and companies will have to become more aware of possible stunts and hoaxes floating around cyberspace.
As with any new year, change will be in full swing starting in January. Keep an eye out for these social media trends as marketers and companies will explore new resources and strategies to meet the needs of our ever-evolving 21st century consumers.
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