With 2016 approaching quickly, it’s imperative for brands and publishers to look ahead at the trends that will affect how they share on social. Once a much smaller part of a larger marketing plan, social media is finally seen as a full-on marketing channel instead of just a strategy, and its prevalence for brands shows no signs of slowing down. If you haven’t done so already, formulate your social content and sharing plan as soon
Good Rich Content
Pictures and video will continue to be an important piece of the social media puzzle for brands and more importance will be placed on well-made, highly-curated and highly shareable branded content. Not every company of brand will have access to on staff video editors or graphic designers, but there are many online tools available to make sure your visual messaging is appealing and in line with your brand voice. With the constant improvements of cameras on mobile devices, expensive and bulky equipment is no longer required to make video content. You can create well-produced video content on almost any device – from shooting to editing to sharing it with the world. Don’t be afraid to get creative and incorporate engaging and share-worthy content for your existing and new fans and followers.
Social platforms are beginning to implement more ways to connect your brand pages directly to your e-commerce pages and sites, having purchase buttons that allow you to either complete the purchase without leaving the platform, or redirecting you right to the highlighted item without having to search from your brand’s homepage. Both the social networks and brands are seeing the value of having the option to purchase directly from a post in one seamless motion, especially since that’s the path any brands hopes consumers take on their own to begin with. Making that segue easier will only serve to convert much more of your followers into customers.
Much of the world’s internet use is already being done on mobile devices, so it’s important to tailor your social media experience to a mobile user. While most platforms are responsive enough to present content in the best way for a particular medium, consider tailoring yours even further to be best viewed on devices – maybe even targeting mobile users directly with content, deals and advertisements geared specifically towards them.
Going into 2016 and beyond, it’s important for brands to understand just how important social media in their customer service model. Because many users will be stumbling across your brand from within apps (where most of the time on devices are spent), they will likely want to engage and interact with you without having to leaves its confines. While a responsive mobile website and contact form are great, consider users who switch between screens to multi-task but mainly stay within Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest for the most part. Not only that, but by responding to your customers, you encourage even more interaction and mentions as others users will want to interact with you in the same way.
Social Network or Search Engine?
While Google will always be king, social media users have also taken to using platforms to find the information they’re looking for. Whether it’s looking for a brand’s Facebook page, or isolating a particular word of phrase on Twitter to find discussion about it, it will be more important than ever for brands to make themselves not only present but active on these networks. Establishing yourself as the go-to source in your market will encourage more conversation and social interaction around your brand, making you easier to find for savvy consumers who know how to navigate the search function to meet their needs.