It is no secret that social media is a powerful tool that helps connect people worldwide.
As Heraclitus once said, Panta Rhei, or “life is flux,” translates into everything or all things change. This theory applies swimmingly to the world of social media.
In one year, social media users increased by 7.5% worldwide. Not only did users increase year over year, but consumer trends also evolved.
Social media posting strategies need to be fluid, and marketers must adapt to the ever-changing digital world around us.
Why is Social Media Still Relevant in 2022?
By 2022, you’ll probably wonder: is it still worth my while to post on social media?
The answer is yes. Without a shadow of a doubt. But why?
According to the research conducted by Kepios, there are over 4.65 billion social media users around the globe as of April 2022, equating to 58.7% of the global population.
Social media remains one of the best mediums for people to connect. Whether you’re using it for business or personal use, social media allows people to form bonds and build community.
It’s also a great way to share information and ideas, build a brand or an audience, or stay informed about current events.
Let’s take a deep dive into the top eleven trends shaping the future of social media posting in 2022.
Trends Shaping the Future of Social Media Posting
1. The Rise of Social Commerce
Social commerce is a new way for brands to take advantage of the opportunities presented by social media marketing and leverage various social media platforms, like Pinterest or Instagram, that allows users to shop directly from their feeds in “shoppable posts.”
It also refers to other forms of purchasing enabled by social networks, like influencer marketing or Instagram Stories ads. Social commerce gives users easy access to purchase products at their fingertips, streamlining them directly into the sales funnel.
West Elm does an excellent job turning a simple design picture on Instagram and turning it into a shoppable post, allowing users to click directly on the product they want to buy. The ability to purchase something new directly in the application is highly efficient for driving sales.
For businesses looking to expand their reach and increase social media ROI, it’s essential to consider ways in which you can incorporate e-commerce into your online presence on social media platforms.
2. Personalization is Key
Because we’re now living in a world where consumers are constantly bombarded with marketing messages, personalization is more important than ever.
Personalization is the process of making content specific to your target audience rather than keeping it generic for the masses. Personalizing your content helps you accommodate your customer segments’ unique needs and interests.
The use of photo effects for social posts is an easy way to add a personalized touch and increase engagement. Customers want to be “transported” with your post; they don’t want to see stock images everywhere. You need to spruce up your content to make sure that it will align with your target audience.
Consumers expect personalized content, and if they don’t receive it, they’ll likely go elsewhere. The good news is that this doesn’t mean you need to create new content for every person in your demographic; make sure that you are being creative in how you approach personalization.
It’s all about making your customers feel special and increasing their engagement with your brand by building trust.
3. Paid Ads are Essential
You may be tempted to dismiss paid ads as unnecessary if your brand is small or just starting out. But the fact is, paid ads are an essential component of a successful social media strategy.
Facebook’s global advertising audience sits at 2.11 billion as of February 2022. Don’t you want a slice of that pie?
Here are the main reasons why paid ads are essential for social media success:
- Social media platforms use algorithms that give preference to brands that pay for ad campaigns over those that don’t. Organic posts on Facebook only receive 0.07% engagement.
- Social media ads can be cost-effective to reach your target audience and promote your product. The average Twitter ad is only $0.38 cost per click.
- Paid advertising is easy to use on social media platforms; most have intuitive interfaces that you can learn quickly. There are also various social media management tools to help take the burden off your back.
- You can see real-time results; this means immediate feedback about which of your ad campaigns are working and which ones aren’t.
Before you go and blow your whole marketing budget on paid ads, it is crucial to segment your ads to target the proper demographics and improve results.
For B2B lead generation, segment your paid ads using firmographic data to assist in figuring out who your potential customers are, how to engage with them, and how to convert them once they’ve discovered your company.
Paid ads are necessary to increase engagement with consumers on social media. Remember to leverage marketing analytics to understand how your ads are performing, and don’t be afraid to tweak your ads based on each unique social media platform for better results.
4. The Need for a Social Listening Strategy
Social listening tools track what people say about your brand, product, competitors, or industry. It’s the process of monitoring the internet for mentions of these keywords so that you can crush your social media marketing game.
Knowing what customers are saying about you on social media is critical in developing future social media posts. You can use a tool like Tweetshots to take a Twitter screenshot of customer comments and create a vision board to help spark inspiration for your next post.
Social listening is vital for discovering trends, sales opportunities, and influencers to collaborate. Additionally, it can help monitor negative comments and interactions with your brand.
For example, in 2021, the free stock trading app Robinhood found itself in a volatile situation when a community on Reddit rallied to influence the stock market.
In response, Robinhood restricted trading on specific stocks and faced media backlash, lawsuits, and even an SEC investigation. This event became a notorious PR issue for the company that could have been prevented with an enhanced social listening strategy on Reddit.
5. Video Content Continues to Dominate
With the rise in popularity of social media platforms like TikTok, it is no surprise that video content is a hot commodity.
According to Wyzowl, 88% of people hope to see more videos from brands in 2022, up an additional 3% from 2021.
Marketers are keen on using video in their 2022 content strategies. Video content is more engaging than posts that contain plain text. Since video content is easier to digest than a long block of text, it increases engagement and is more likely to be shared on social media sites.
Instructional video content is increasing in popularity among brands because it converts. When asked how consumers want to learn about a product or service, 73% said they’d prefer to watch a short video than 11% who’d instead read a text-based article, and 4% who’d like to view an infographic.
Instructional videos are a successful tactic because they provide the viewer value without being overly promotional. For example, this Youtube video posted by Freepik gives a video tutorial on how to make a paper cut-out Valentine’s card. Freepik often posts tutorials like this to encourage graphic designers and their target audience to follow them for more tips and tricks.
The bottom line: don’t underestimate the power of video.
6. Social Audio Will Be More Popular
Social audio is gaining steam with the launch of social media apps like Clubhouse and Twitter Spaces. These apps are still in their beginning stages, but they seem to be gaining popularity. After closing the Series C round of funding in April 2021, the Clubhouse app was valued $4 billion with over 28 million downloads.
There are many fantastic ways you can incorporate these new social audio platforms into your existing social media strategy.
Imagine doing a weekly roundup show or an interview series with industry leaders about essential topics in your niche. You can also experiment with short audio clips that highlight your expertise and share it directly with your followers, who can listen at their convenience.
7. User-Generated Content Continues to Expand
User-generated content is a powerful way for a brand to create authenticity, trust, and community. Consumers will always prefer authentic, relatable content over spammy ads.
Marketers can quickly jump on this trend by leveraging customers’ photos that they already share of themselves on social media.
LaCroix does an excellent job with user-generated content on Instagram. They ask for permission to use consumers’ photos for their daily posts and grant them photo credit. This strategy has many benefits—it highlights how your customers are using your product, shows off how much they love it, and gets others excited to purchase your product.
8. Influencer Marketing and Outsourcing to Creators
The Influencer Marketing Industry projects to grow to more than $16 Billion in 2022, and 68% of marketers discussed an increase in their influencer marketing spend in 2022.
Influencer marketing is a form of social media marketing in which marketers partner with social media stars who have a loyal audience or are seen as experts in their fields.
For example, the influencer @itsamtc created this TikTok for Tailor Brands and generated 21 million views and over 700,000 likes. She encourages her followers to use her promo code for 50% off their small business-building services.
Influence marking is effective because it builds trust, strengthens brand messaging through authentic endorsements, and reaches a more engaged and qualified audience.
9. Customer Service & Engagement Matters
Social media strategies need to account for both customer service and customer engagement.
Customers today expect to use social media platforms to reach out to companies they do business with. 72% of customers prefer social media to contact brands over traditional channels such as email or phone.
This trend will only increase in the years ahead, so it’s essential for any company with an online presence to be prepared for the increased use of social media for customer support and feedback.
To improve your social customer service, here are some best practices:
- Make sure you have people dedicated to managing your brand’s accounts and replying quickly—ideally within one hour—to all communications from customers.
- Train all employees who have access to company accounts on how you’d like them to handle interactions with customers on social media—complaints or compliments, questions or concerns, etc.
10. More Businesses Will Use Chatbots & AI
Chatbots are a growing trend in the social media world. They help automate customer service and messaging, but they can also engage with followers and customers by providing information based on user input.
AI is a great way to drive lead generation and keep users engaged even when you aren’t around. For example, Capgemini Research Insitute found that 56% of banking and insurance customers enjoyed using AI interactions for the 24/7 availability and support.
AI-infused chatbots also help with social media listening we discussed earlier by tracking feedback regarding what people like or dislike about your brand.
11. Social Media Communities Will Increase
Many social media users realize the benefits of joining communities. Whether a community is based on a common interest, profession, or goal, these social media communities can help people connect and share advice, which many people struggle with doing in real life, thanks to COVID-19.
For example, Facebook Groups like “Parenting in a Tech World” allow parents worldwide to connect and share their experiences raising kids in this ever-changing digital age. This group also serves as a support system for parents hoping to learn more about internet safety for kids.
Marketers can have great success by partnering with specific social communities that align with their target audience.
Are your current social media strategies working? If not, try a few of these trends and consider how they reshape your game plan. It’s impossible to predict every future trend, but it is worth staying current where you can.
Social media is an ever-changing beast. It is imperative to stay on top of your social media posting to build your brand, stay connected with customers, and boost sales.
Are you feeling overwhelmed? No need to worry. Eclincher’s intuitive social media management software will help you stay on track. With a free 14-day trial and personal demo offering, you’ll be off to the races and increasing ROI on your social media campaigns in no time.