The world has not yet stopped evolving, and it doesn’t appear it will do that anytime soon. There will always be a new day. And many changes come with it. Of course, people’s behaviors change along with it. Consequently, social media undergoes evolution too. New cool features and better algorithms are being added to them to be able to tend to the needs of their users.
Marketers need to keep track of these trends. They would help in improving and adjusting their strategies, which in turn will help their business grow. Admittedly, it is not an easy task. The trends are rapidly changing and hence, require marketers to pay close attention. It is manageable, though. All one needs is dedication. And perhaps a place where they can find the most important trends. This is that place.
Sit tight, marketers. Here are the social media trends in 2021 that you should be aware of.
Social Commerce – Turning Your Views Into Purchases
Evolving in social media platforms is often related to streamlining. That’s why we are seeing more platforms introduce new tools and features that allow users to shop easily. Even in obscure, highly-niche products, buying more YouTube views means buying more sales.
In Instagram, people can add product tags users can click/tap to make a purchase without leaving the platform. Meanwhile, on its parent company – Facebook, users can set up Shops, which are like physical shops. The items for sale will be displayed there, and other users can browse and buy through them. The different social media giant – Twitter, has also jumped on the bandwagon. It has revamped its e-commerce efforts and introduced the Shop Module feature.
This is nothing but a win for marketers. Studies report that 54% of social media users research products using social media platforms. Moreover, 71% of users’ decisions are influenced by social media referrals. Thus, adding a buy button to your post will be most helpful. It will make the users more inclined to make a purchase should they like what they read.
Set up a social media storefront now or risk being left so far behind by your competitors.
Long Live The Live Streams
The pandemic has made digital the new normal. People are advised to put a distance between each other and avoid going to crowded places. As a result, face-to-face meetings became online conferences while live concerts turned into live streams. Of course, that caused a rise in the usage of social media platforms’ live streaming features. To illustrate, the number of views on Facebook Live doubled in just a week.
The pandemic is still ongoing, but it may be near its end. So, we can expect live streams to remain popular. In fact, they will stay like that even after the pandemic ends. People have already been accustomed to being able to interact with brands live without ever leaving their homes. It’s something they would like to keep.
That said, brands should incorporate live streaming into their marketing strategies. They will allow you to connect better to people and gain more customers.
Tell Customers Stories
FOMO-inducing content, aka Stories, has been widely popular among social media users. Every day, more than 500 million users interact with Stories. It would be wise to use this content’s popularity to your advantage.
What marketers could do is include Stories in their publishing calendars. They disappear after 24 hours, so it’s essential to post a new one every day.
Know that videos outperform photos in Stories. It’s not speculation; a SocialInsider study has found it. At least 51% of brands are already using videos in Stories. The others should take a leaf out of their books.
Virtual Reality And Augmented Reality Can Really Help You
As mentioned above, social distancing protocols have made people look for new ways to interact. A great way to do that is to hop into a virtual reality world. That will make people feel like they are together when they are actually far away from each other. Indeed, this technology can reduce or even remove feelings of isolation. That’s why social media platforms are now incorporating VR. If your brand can take advantage of this, it will let you be ahead of your competitors.
Augmented Reality and WMR Headsets are just as popular as VR, if not more popular. The fact that it is more accessible than VR is already a plus. But it also includes familiar experiences like dynamic photo filters. That brings AR closer to the hearts of the people.
So what can you do with AR? You can use the tech to let people “try” your products or envision them in their homes using their cameras. It is interactive, engaging, and entertaining. Rest assured, it will help in driving sales.
We Are The World
The pandemic is a global problem. It is a difficult time for everyone. Sadly, some people are less privileged than others. Thus, they need help to survive. Luckily, people know this, and they are willing to lend a helping hand. They want to help now more so than ever.
It would be best to show them that your brand cares about people’s well-being too. Do purpose-driven campaigns – a fundraising event for communities struggling because of the pandemic, perhaps. That will show people that money is not all you think about. Furthermore, it will help humanize your brand.
According to findings from a Twitter survey, 77% of users feel more positively about brands that try to support society during these difficult times.
Everybody is Happy
Most people are now pushing for inclusivity. The belief is, everyone matters – no matter their race, color, or gender. And they feel strongly about it.
How does that affect your brand? An Accenture study found that almost a third of all shoppers would switch to an inclusive brand and support diversity. They will abandon those that are not or haven’t made their stance clear.
Needless to say, you need to keep up. Show your audiences that you are not selective to the communities that you support. But be wary. Your social media posts should be authentic. People know how to distinguish between what’s genuine and what’s performance activism. It could make or break your business.
What Other Trends Can Social Media Offer YouTubers like You?
Short content. That’s right. YouTube is trying more than ever before to get content creators to start focusing on making short-form content for their platform. The reason is that TikTok is still growing more powerful and influential by the day. As tech permeates our society and our mind, it melts away our once durable attention span, leaving it resembling a small puddle for children to walk on and walk amongst. The modern attention span fueled with the high-intensity TikTok quality level of content is forcing more eyeballs away from YouTube than the species can replace, so it’s crossed a major threshold.
YouTube is even throwing stacks of cash at major influencers, paying tens of thousands of dollars to get these creators to post on YouTube Shorts, the new section designed for short-form content optimized to compete and fight back against the endless loss of views that TikTok represents. When one takes a step back and remembers the highly politicized fights about anything and everything related to Drumph, it’s pretty ironic that the platform that certainly didn’t help spread his message would have significantly benefitted from one of his zany actions – the complete and utter removal of the rival TikTok from the American internet. The one thing they knew is that America does represent the world, and America represents the goal for the world. This means if TikTok was declared a national security risk, and promptly to be removed from the internet, the rest of the world would follow suit, and gradually fall off the platform. The kids would then use the common colloquial phrase often repeated on the internet with “yo, TikTok, you fell off and are down bad.”
Short Content is the King in the Short Term
Now that our attention span rivals the brightest goldfish in the bowl, and we are all still locked up inside our home with our masks on, we often wonder how short can short content get before it loses all value? We will surely find out by 2022, as every platform cross-competes for the growing set of eyeballs that shifts their attention to China’s influential, trend-setting TikTok sensation. Do the kids even care about potential security risks, and more importantly, are these risks real issues? Were these Trumped-up accusations a temporary and blinding light cast out from the deep chasms of the “Blonald Blumph” administration? We may never know, but we can rest assured – with China, your information is safe. China has helped deploy TikTok on millions of phones and is catching up to YouTube every day, and they have so far done an exceedingly excellent job at preventing massive drops and leaks of our sensitive data.
When you look at just about every major corporation in modern America, you can’t even say the same thing. Are our YouTube views so secure that we may be hypothetically as safe as TikTok when viewing even edgy, funny content on these platforms? So far, the obvious answer is a resounding yes, and this may just be due to the fact that if the information from our viewing habits were to be leaked online, it would be too risky to discuss publicly. The governments whose job is to protect us would silently swoop in, like a Batman-like figure, and save us from ourselves like they always do.
If there is one lesson from all of this, experiment with short content. Try everything you can think of, and you will surely be surprised at which contents rise from the pile of garbage that you publish on your post-ironic meme account. If you run a semi-serious YouTube or entertainment brand, this may be altered to fit and uphold your brand image which you spend and spent decades building.