10 social media trends

Our social media strategies are constantly evolving, adapting and changing.  And while you probably map out your social media strategy each year, and have is as a part of general marketing strategy of your brand or company, we all know that adaptation and flexibility is key, and that the only constant thing is change.

And while it’s hard to predict what the future holds for social media, there are certain trends that can be pinpointed.  Below are 10 social media trends for the next decade, as predicted by Peter Kim from Cheil.

10 Social Media Trends for the Next 10 Years:

1. Evolving
The way consumers use sites and the way brands participate and engage have changed fundamentally over the past 10 years.  Brands must adopt customer relationship and engagement strategies that harness data for long-term growth.

2. Shoppable
Social media has long escaped the scrutiny of the chief financial officer and it’s time for brands to monetise social media efforts.  Fashion brands, such as Burberry and Ralph Lauren, understand this and have made their runway videos shoppable.  Now, every brand should incorporate financial calls to action in social media content.
** Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram have or are in the process of introducing Buy buttons already.

3. Snackable
Consumers are finding it increasingly difficult to digest long-form content.  When browsing, users want to get to the heart of the message as quickly as possible.  The more snackable a brand makes its content, the more social it will be.  Easy to understand means easy to share, which translates into better results for content and campaigns.

4. Automated
Currently, ad placement and publishing in social is a manual process.  This will evolve to better utilise data and computers.  Most advertisers are already shifting display and video budgets into this type of media buying, and social media will follow suit.  Why?  All consumers hate ads because of interruption, irrelevance and clutter.  Programmatic placement (the insertion of ads and native content into social media sites) can help drive context, relevance and efficiency of messaging.

5. Connective
The power of our increasingly powerful mobile devices as social utilities are where great potential lies.  The ability to develop transformative applications that connect individuals to individuals but also societies to societies holds great potential.

6. Filtered
Increasingly powerful and affordable technology allows people to create more content than ever before.  In fact, 90% of the world’s data has been created over the past two years. Because of this information overload, people will filter out messages to hear only what they want to hear, creating segmented and sheltered media channels.

7. Integrated
Social media sites act as brand graveyards, filled with the tombstones of dead campaigns that were only meant to survive a single campaign.  From TV commercials and billboards to microsites and social media accounts, brands must focus on using platforms for long-term relationship building.

8. Chinese
China currently contributes the greatest percentage to global GDP growth. However, many Chinese social media sites remain focused on the local market.  Over the next 10 years, these sites will shift their focus beyond the “great firewall” and enter overseas markets.

9. Subcutaneous
With all the excitement about wearables, it’s easy to forget about the internet of things.  More importantly, it’s the concept of addressability – the ability for a device to receive a message or signal – that brands need to figure out.  The natural evolution of consumer devices is into implantables, which are the ultimate personal technology.

10. Empowering
Some brands, such as Dove and Nike, have discovered that supporting social good can have a greater impact than feeding individual egos.  Other brands will follow suit and use social media efforts to look at the long tail, identifying opportunities to foster empowerment and equality aligned with brand values.

Brands must change their mindset to engage successfully in the future. Marketers must embrace their inner digital geek and learn to love technology.  To harness trends, they must look beyond their borders, specifically to the east where Asia leads the way.  Realising that their current techniques are outdated will lead brands to new strategies for success in the next decade.

What do you think are the social media trends for the next decade?  Leave a comment below.  It will be interesting to see in a couple of years how these predictions stand in that time’s reality.