The Future of Customer Engagement on Social Media
More than ever, businesses are struggling to compete for customer engagement in the social space. Research from marketing consultancy firm Edelman found that 60% of global consumers no longer trust social media networks. If 2018 was a tough year for marketers to regain trust on social media, 2019 signifies an important one for brands to become more agile in adapting to customer needs. We’ve identified an overview of the key social media trends for brands to watch for this year.
Trend #1: Social stories
Contrary to what skeptics believe, the Stories feature (short user-generated photo and video collections that disappear after 24 hours) is not just a fad, but rather here to stay. As of May 2018, nearly a billion users across Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Whatsapp are already sharing through Stories everyday. Within this year, the feature is set to surpass feeds as the primary way people share things with friends. More platforms are hopping onto this bandwagon – YouTube has recently launched its beta Stories feature for its creators with over 10k subscribers.
The main reason why Stories are so enticing to users’ engagement is its intimacy. Stories are ephemeral and visual, allowing users to capture immediate experiences and decorating them with text, audio, drawings, filters and stickers. Another reason for this is that Stories allow users to watch vertical videos, which feels much more comfortable and enjoyable than horizontal videos on a smartphone.
Brands are quickly embracing Stories, with 4 out of 5 major brands already using the format to share location-specific content and engage customers. For content teams, it’s key to have a Stories strategy that can create a consistent brand identity while creating production value for your product. Consider using motion graphics and features such as polling, Q&A or behind-the-scenes takeovers on topics that interest your customers the most. Since the Stories feature varies between different platforms, it’s also worth having different approaches and solutions to build engagement with your customers.
Trend #2: Context and audience specific content
Since 2015, organic engagements on social media have consistently been declining. This is because social media platforms are encouraging brands to spend more money on ads to generate the same social traffic. Because of this, marketers now realize they’re facing increased competition in the paid social ad space.