Hit the ground running with the latest and greatest social media marketing tips. It is becoming pretty self-evident that social media is taking over the world by storm. Over the past few years, we have seen a radical increase in popularity surrounding social media platforms such as Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok. The hype surely isnât going anywhere soon, and that is why you should know how to capitalize it through the best marketing methods.
Nowadays, it is a rarity to find someone who is not on any social media platform, and who can blame people? They offer entertainment and fun in spades, just like our favorite free bingo. One can even shop directly on social media applications. While that is awesome for casual users, it is even better for business owners. Social media allows brands to build their own identity, and engage with customers on a much more personal level than we were used to in the past. Social media marketing is, without doubt, the hot commodity when it comes to pushing one’s brand forward in 2021.
Just last year, there were over 3.6 billion registered social media users worldwide. One of the most exciting things is that just one great post can go viral anytime, exploding your follower count, and ramping up your sales. Chasing the viral factor is not exactly simple, but it can be honed. How? By following the hottest social media trends. You can even get in on a trend before it catches fire, and thereby capitalize on it when it blows up. In any case, at whatever point in time you jump on the hype train and bend it to your favour, it is always going to work towards your benefit. We are here to tell you what trends to look out for this year.
Mastering Social Media in 2021 – Trends to Keep Your Eye On
Post Less, Give More
We are seeing that brands are opting to go for a “less is more” approach when it comes to posting social media content. That is not to say you should put less effort into your posts, but the opposite. It is all about curated posts that are thoughtful, bring value, and are in touch with what is going on in the world. While we find ourselves in a global pandemic, making posts geared towards how people are feeling is a smart thing to do. Ideally, you want content that strikes a connection between your followers and the brand, which is also memorable. Algorithms tend to favour whoever posts most, but that can come off as spammy, and you don’t want that image attached to your business. High-quality posts that are rarer will also keep up a sense of anticipatory excitement for your user base.
Authentic Value Over Production Quality
The last year has shifted a lot of businesses into remote models. We are aware that crafting great, scalable content from home can be quite a challenge in itself. The global lockdown prompted many companies to put out content that was of a more lo-fi nature. However, that is not all bad. When done right, and the lo-fi social media post brings value, such content can often perform better than polished posts. The trick here is to appeal to the visual language of the particular app you are using. If you manage to tap into the style created and embraced by the community, then that will act as an authenticity factor. It can also work to let people find more of themselves in such posts. Down-to-earth social media campaigns with real people and true stories are not something to shy away from. The old ways are changing, and social media has come to embracing emotionally charged lo-fi content over high production with little inner value to it. The key is to find something that carries a strong yet simple message that people can identify with on a deep level. Real-world storylines featuring your product or service are a great starting point to try out.
A Different Tone to Conversational Marketing
Maintaining a conversational tone is not an innovation when it comes to social media strategies. Many popular brands are known to be open to chat with their followers. However, as so many brands are doing this, it takes more to stand out in 2021. Previously, conversational marketing was aimed at fuelling the promotions of a brand. In the future, it looks like a more empathetic approach will become valued. That means that brands will likely shift their attention to educating their customers about products, helping, and doing everything in a more heartfelt, human tone. Social media is in big part about peeking into the snapshots of people’s lives. As users have gotten used to that aspect, it is a fantastic avenue for brands to establish a more intimate connection with their customers by embracing the human factor in their endeavours. The new trend in brand voice and tone will be one of care. As the adage goes – it is not what you say, but how you say it. Being approachable, friendly, and engaging is something that companies can try to apply in their social media messages, as well as in the comments section. To realize this approach in practical terms, brands should look into blending AI tools with human interactions. As more and more companies use chatbots nowadays, having a human assistant will become even more valuable. After all, let’s face it, most people can make out when they have to talk to a bot. It may be cost-effective, but it is far from a hearty experience at best and can be frustrating at worst.
Keep it Snappy and Snackable
If you are somewhat familiar with what is happening in the social media industry, you will have noticed that the content is getting increasingly snappier. Last year the rapid rise of Reels, as found on TikTok and Instagram, surely played a part in that. Obviously, users scroll through social media for entertainment, looking for something that catches their attention. As most posts get edited to be attention-grabbing, fast-paced, and punchy, anything that can’t compete with the pace won’t cut it. The notion that the attention span of users on social media has been shortening is also an important factor to consider when creating your posts. Make snackable content your priority, and you will be ahead of the curve. If you are not quite sure how to do that, you will find some great tips here.
Implement Direct Shopping on Your Social Media Accounts
The lockdown forced loads of businesses to take their endeavours exclusively online. What better way to create a store than directly on your main marketing platform? Initially, the social media shopping capabilities were limited to only a few of the platforms, but now each has raced to create its own advanced business marketing solutions. Instagram and Facebook are excellent in their implementation features. Instagram offers shoppable posts, as well as a dedicated tab on your page for customers to acquire items. Facebook has shops that make it incredibly easy for people to purchase things without even having to leave the app. If you are a brand, then you should, by all means, implement these functions on your social media pages. Stores with neatly organized social media shops look professional, and it is perfect for facilitating impulse buys.
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VR and AR
Virtual reality tech is continuously gaining steam as we speak. It is seen to be the next-gen gaming method that will take off significantly in the coming years. According to predictions, the tech will not only revolutionize gaming as we know it, but advertising too. As VR sets become affordable and more people get them for entertainment purposes, the technology will open up a completely new avenue of interacting with your customers. The company Castrol, for example, already took to using the technology for its marketing purposes. It created a fully immersive driving experience. The innovative marketing campaign also featured the professional race car driver Matt Powers and the social media influencer Austin Evans. Augmented reality tech is not as immersive, but it may be more practical for everyday use and the casual integration into social media promotions. AR works in a way that allows for digital information to be overlayed on top of the physical world, and it is by nature highly interactive. The hugely acclaimed mobile game Pokémon Go is a prime example of how massively successful an AR-based experience can be. There are rumours that Apple will release its consumer AR glasses in the coming years. That would make AR technology incredibly consumer-friendly and trendy to have. The first brands that will be ready for integrating AR into their marketing operations will surely secure a lot of attention.
Make Inclusivity a Priority
Inclusivity and tolerance are extremely relevant topics in 2021. The public media is growing increasingly eager to call out any kinds of hate attacks, bullying, and other unsavoury behaviour. That is more than just a trend, but a social movement. As a brand, you can not afford to stay silent about your position regarding such current issues. Stating your stance on diversity and inclusivity is an important move to make in today’s social climate. In fact, according to a study done by Accenture, almost 30% of all people who shop online would be happy to switch to a brand that is actively committed to being inclusive and diverse. Stating your position will work to strengthen the connection to your followers, as a substantial percentage of them are likely passionate about these topics. If you stay passive in that regard, some people may gravitate towards your competitors who are vocal about their stance. The themes regarding inclusivity get widely discussed and are popular on social media these days, but be sure to be thoughtful with how you phrase your relevant posts. It can be a touchy subject, and any room for misinterpreting your communications could backfire.
Brands and social media are a match made in heaven when the marketing aspect gets done right. We hope that you gained some insight on how to up your social media game in 2021 so that you can make the best of it. Remember that quality always wins over quantity when it comes to content. Keep it engaging, respectable, snappy, and authentic. Be sure to use the Live, Stories, and Reel features in your campaigns. If you do that, you will be in the ballpark for success. We would love to know, what do you think are the best social media practices in 2021? What do you enjoy seeing brands do on your favourite platforms? Please share your comments in the section below!