Social media is an unpredictable. In the last decade we’ve witnessed the rise and fall of many social media platforms. But for the networks that have stood the test of time, what, if anything, can we expect for the future? And how will social media marketing change in the years to come?
Marketing with Influencers
“Social media marketing will naturally continue to grow for the foreseeable future and there are quite a few trends we can make reasonable assumptions about, as well as a few threats.” Social media marketing will most likely increase the use of influencers, as this is a marketing segment that has seen strong growth over the last few years with no signs of slowing down.
“Influence marketing has been a widely used marketing tactic that has effectively leveraged the audience reach of brands or celebrities that have millions of followers,” explained Eden Cheng, digital marketing expert and co-founder of PeopleFinderFree. “However, while this strategy proved popular in the past, this approach has proven to be very expensive of late and, to a huge extent, not very effective. As such, moving forward, we can expect to see a steady rise in the value of micro-influencer marketing, which leverages smaller influencers with hundreds of thousands of followers, but offer up a more specific niche, a more engaged audience base, and cheaper advertising and promotional fees. This way, it is set to become easier for businesses to impact audiences that are really interested in their products/services, which ultimately, increases their chances of conversion.”
However, as Alex Kus explained, using influencers to market products on social media will likely come with greater transparency laws – laws that are being considered or are already implemented in numerous countries. According to Kus, these regulations include “a legal requirement to disclose when promotional images have been digitally enhanced.”
“Beyond that, social listening tools will become an ever more important part of any marketing strategy,” Kus concluded. “Where better to get data on how to sell with social media than social media?”
Artificial Intelligence and Social Media
Eden Cheng believes that artificial intelligence (AI) will soon be adopted by businesses, if it hasn’t already, and incorporated into their marketing strategies.
“This is set to change how companies process marketing data, as the use of machine learning will not only help companies to process consumer data more efficiently in order to create more effective marketing strategies, but the use of predictive AI will also be able to help them to produce better ROI,” Cheng explained. “They will now be able to more accurately evaluate influencer marketing data to ensure that they are only paying for conversions and sales that influencers produce.”
Artificial intelligence can greatly improve social media marketing and help social media managers by lowering costs and increasing revenue. By automating some of the more monotonous tasks that social media managers are responsible for, SMMs will have more time to focus on more valuable tasks. AI is already being used on social media by brands to:
- Make social media posts
- Determine what types of posts are the most effective
- Improve social media strategy
- Track and analyze trends across multiple social media channels
- Pinpoint a target audience
- Decrease social media management time
- Monitor social media activity
New Social Media Platforms and Social Media Marketing Formats
If there is one thing to be sure of, it’s that social media will continue to grow and new formats will be developed. We’ve already witnessed the impact a new format can have on social media, when video was introduced on platforms like Instagram and TikTok.
Chloe Sisson from Zen Media, a PR agency, says ”I believe that video marketing is here to stay. The rise of TikTok has drastically changed how social media marketing operates. Instagram has announced that they will be pushing reels over picture content. TikTok has become one of the most popular social media platforms. If you can figure out the algorithm, TikTok is a great platform to use to promote your brand for free.”
“Social media marketing is still expanding, and we are still waiting to see how new technologies like Twitter Spaces work out,” Mykola Tymkiv, COO at MacKeeper, shared. “Influencer marketing is at its highest, and it will continue to grow in the coming years. Brands will have to experiment with new angles and platforms to find their audience and build up from there.”
“We might see some new platforms, but we will certainly see new SMM formats,” predicted Tymkiv. “Twitter Spaces is the best example of that, and we will see many similar inventions in the next few years.”