Marketing

The Most Important Social Media Marketing Trends That You Must Know

Here’s how social media marketing is changing in 2018, and how you can adjust your tactics to fit the latest trends.

Adhip Ray Adhip Ray on May 8, 2018 • 11 minute read

Social Media is dying.

No, I don’t mean you should expect your beloved social media platforms to pack up and leave. What I really mean is: Social media shares are dying.

People nowadays are far less inclined to share stuff on social media than previously.

In fact, BuzzSumo conducted a study, wherein they analyzed 100 million articles on the web, and guess what?

The results were pretty alarming.

Articles published in 2017 received on average 50% less social shares than articles published in 2015. This “50%” is a pretty huge number and when you consider the fact that between 2015 and 2017, social media users have only increased, it is a shocker!

Well, the author of this analysis (Steve Rayson) as well as SEO expert Brian Dean consider SEO to be the most important factor to get traffic to a website. Although SEO is not a piece of cake, I would have to agree with him.

You should spend time on improving your website’s SEO, but in no way should you consider leaving social media either.

Why?

Well, there are a number of reasons for that.

There is a saying: “SEO is for bringing in customers and social media is for keeping them”. Also, it is a fatal error in business and marketing to keep all the eggs in one basket. Google changes its algorithms super fast and current white hat tactics may not eventually be considered “white hat” in the future.

As such, focusing on one single way to bring in customers is a tremendous mistake. While social media shares are down, it doesn’t mean your content will receive lesser shares, will it?

All you have to do is stay ahead of the content marketing curve as well as the social media marketing (SMM) race. Here are the most important social media marketing trends that you got to be aware of.

Are You Using LinkedIn Yet?

LinkedIn isn’t just for people with jobs. LinkedIn is for business owners, bloggers, social media consultants and virtually each and every professional under the sun.

If you are a content creator, the time is now, for you to jump on the train and utilize LinkedIn to its fullest potential.

There are a few downsides and upsides to LinkedIn and the ups far outweigh the downs.

When it comes to the negatives in LinkedIn, you may face any of the following factors:

  1. It may be difficult to get followers and sufficient exposure in LinkedIn.
  2. LinkedIn has the lowest click-through rate among all social media platforms, including Twitter.
  3. LinkedIn groups are filled with BS spam.
  4. LinkedIn has very poor engagement rates.

Well, there is no single way to break through all of these downsides, but let’s look at some of the bright sides too.

  1. Even with the lowest CTR, LinkedIn boasts the highest conversion rate among any social media platform out there.
  2. LinkedIn has very few spam followers and those who will follow you have a high chance of becoming your customers and/or future prospects.
  3. LinkedIn social shares are up by a huge margin according to the BuzzSumo study, referred earlier.

Because of all these reasons, it is the most important social media platform you should capitalize on as of now.

Now, let’s say you start using LinkedIn. How do you get the first boost of followers and get your audience rolling?

Here are five ways you can build an audience to your LinkedIn profile:

  • Create articles for LinkedIn Pulse. LinkedIn Pulse is LinkedIn’s very own blog and it is a great way to get a huge number of followers to your LinkedIn account. In fact, even Neil Patel of QuickSprout recommends this.
  • Add a LinkedIn Follow button on your website. If your site has a good amount of incoming traffic, then it shall not be long before you get hold of quite a good number of followers on LinkedIn.
  • Share videos on LinkedIn. Videos are a huge factor now (both in SEO and in social media) and if you want your posts to get more traction and gain more visitors, then capitalize on it.
  • Engage in LinkedIn groups. Well, like Facebook Groups, these can be filled with a lot of spam but it is also the best way to get a good audience to your LinkedIn page before you get that sweet count of followers.
  • Use Call to Actions (CTAs) at the end of each and every post that you write on Pulse. Asking viewers to follow you can bump up your follower count easily.

Facebook Just Became a Lot More Difficult for Marketers

If you are a marketer and have built a decent fan following to your Facebook page, your life just got a hell lot more difficult. It is now “mission impossible” to make your posts viral on that platform.

Likes and comments by your fans mean a lot less on Facebook’s algorithm and the organic traffic to brands’ Facebook pages has crumbled. With all these drawbacks, it may not be worth your time on a strictly ROI basis, if you haven’t started using Facebook for marketing purposes yet.

Even so, Facebook is a dominant social media giant at present, so it makes little sense to ignore it. While my recommendation is strictly based on ROI, you could gather some courage and try to win against the algorithm by applying the tactics detailed below. And if you have been marketing on this platform, it makes no sense to leave Facebook altogether.

Also, according to research, Facebook users open the site or app around three times every day, which is much more frequent than other social media platforms!

So if you want to beat Facebook’s latest algorithms, here are the best ways you can do so:

  1. Include CTAs that ask your audience to comment on your posts. While engagement with your posts mean very little to Facebook’s algorithm, Mark Zuckerberg has said that it will prioritize comments far more than likes or reactions. Why? Well, simply because posts that entertain conversations will get better organic traffic.
  2. Ask customers to select the “See first” option on your page. This is the holy grail. It will basically overrride the entire Facebook algorithm. If you get your users to do it, they will see your posts first.
  3. Participate in Facebook Groups. As a rule of thumb, your posts in those groups will have less reach and even more pathetic engagement if you don’t engage in Facebook groups. That may appear to be a waste of time, but participation in Facebook Groups is the most important traffic earning strategy right now.
  4. Create Live videos. Talk about something, review something or give some advice, whatever suits your Facebook page but most importantly try to increase engagement.

Applying these strategies can be hard but if you can use them the right way, then you are up for success!


Track your Facebook metrics in real-time with a free Facebook marketing stats dashboard.


Instagram appears to be the Next Big Thing!

Ah! Instagram. The thing I like most about Instagram marketing is that it is highly scalable. In fact, just by crafting good posts, putting the right hashtags and conducting shoutout-for-shoutout, a marketer can earn thousands of followers.

And, that’s not all. If you want more automation, there are plenty of bots that regulate your account and add likes and comments on several posts, which thereby allow you to get a huge number of followers easily.

Used by all age groups, this is a perfect place to market your products, no matter what age it relies on.

Instagram has been rising in popularity steadily for quite a long time and by the look of it, it isn’t going to stop anytime soon.

So, how can you make the best of it?

Glad you asked!

I have gone through several websites and found that most offer pretty generic advice on how to scale Instagram. I put on my thinking cap and tried to find an effective way to increase my follower base without spending hours on end, liking and commenting on others’ posts.

Here’s what you can do to brand your business (or yourself) on Instagram:

  • Create quality posts – This one’s pretty basic. But, it is surprising how few people actually post quality stuff. Check out Foundr’s Instagram account for inspiration. Their posts are routinely shared by numerous other Instagrammers.
  • Post frequently – According to research, brands with 5K+ followers post around 3+ images regularly.
  • Write a detailed caption, or don’t at all – Pictures speak a thousand words, so don’t speak useless stuff just to put in your hashtags. A better way would be to put dots (…) vertically and then place your hashtags. But, if you have quality content for your captions, then by all means use that. Users love quality captions! But try to incorporate the gist of your message in your images. After all, that’s what Instagram is for.
  • Use 30 hashtags in every post – That is the upper limit. So why shouldn’t you capitalize on it? Also, change the hashtags you use in each and every post. Using the same hashtags is a sure fire way to lessen the growth of your followers and even maybe to get shadow-banned by Instagram.
  • Videos beat images every time – Videos get you higher engagement and a greater number of followers than images. Try to create quality videos. The more you post videos, the better.
  • Like and comment to increase followers and engagement – In his research, Neil Patel found that for every 100 likes, you get 6.1 followers. While I found that number to be double my rate, it is still it a very good tactic for increasing followers. Now, you may find that liking so many pictures is hard work (and it actually is), you can always use codes or bots to remove the burden from your shoulders.
  • Repost – Repost others’ posts, like their posts, comment on their posts and then ask them for a repost. But since it takes so much of your time, do it only with someone with at least 10k followers.

I used all these techniques and got my follower base to 1334 in just three months time. In fact, I stopped using my Instagram account for more than a month (nearly two) but I still retain around 1100 followers.

Snapchat: Wait, but Why?

Snapchat had been a great innovation. From its Stories features to the idea of disappearing images and videos, it has captured users by leaps and bounds.

However, the problems started after Facebook tried to buy Snapchat and Snapchat rejected it. This was followed with intense competition by Facebook via the Instagram app and the Facebook app itself. Instagram’s adoption of Snapchat’s most popular Stories functionality plummeted the growth rate of the app, causing huge losses in terms of shares.

Snapchat showed zero growth in user-generated Stories from the end of April to the middle of September, and its design overhaul that incorporated ads into its Stories function in private messages of users received major backlash.

If you market a product that is focused towards teens, then you may be a good candidate for Snapchat marketing.

So, if your customer base includes teenagers, here’s how you can get the ball rolling:

  • Use your SnapCode everywhere.
  • Share your Snapchat user ID everywhere. All accounts that grow organically will share their Snapchat UserID across all their social media profiles.

With no hashtags, and 0 chance for new marketers to get featured in the Discover tab, I would suggest you stay away from this niche social platform if marketing is your primary concern.

It isn’t restricted to just that. Snapchat just updated their Discover algorithm and it has thrown publishers into a frenzy. Some have reported getting far more traffic while some have got quite a drop in their traffic.

Since no one has a clue regarding Discover’s newest algorithm, you may become demotivated if you try to build reach.

Should You Become a Twitterati?

Truth be told, Twitter has one of the worst CTRs among all social media platforms. Also, its growth had been stagnating for several years now.

But, Twitter is a very valuable social media platform for marketers.

Why?

It is because if you want to guest post on a high-end site, get featured in any top-notch article, get to know some hotshot, or just talk with an expert in your niche, then Twitter is your calling.

Twitter has always been a place where the experts, influencers, politicians and icons are most active.

Don’t believe me. Just check out Tim Ferris’ book “Tools of Titans”. Almost every entrepreneurs mention that they are most active on Twitter.

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So, if you want to get your brand into the spotlight, this is the best place. You don’t even have to wait for long to gain good social media traction behind you. All you need is to set up an account, do the basic optimizations (like giving a cover pic and a DP) and you are set.

Now, participate in some Twitter Chats or use unconventional techniques like Karan.J.Thakkar uses to boost your Twitter following (I even applied his techniques to grow my Twitter follower base (to 3000 in 7 weeks) although on a much-moderated basis).

Conclusion

Social media has always changed. Once, MySpace was the dominant social media platform and then came different and more varied mediums of social media platforms. With the lessening social media shares, if you want your brand to stay on top, you need to be aware of these changing algorithms and trends.

If you incorporate these tactics shown in this post, you will easily rock the social media platform where you are focusing.

About the author
Adhip Ray
Adhip Ray Adhip is a blogger, freelance writer and the founder of the blog WinSavvy. He covers actionable and highly comprehensive content on entrepreneurship, self-improvement and blogging etc.
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