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Social media marketing: What can we expect for 2017?

Social media marketing is an ever-changing field, and it has moved far beyond the days when posting links on Digg counted as social media marketing. It is evolving to take developing customer tastes and preferences into account, while marketers have to stay in front of an ever-segmenting customer market. Social media marketing is shifting as search engines and social media sites change, all of which is affected by customers' usage of them. Let's look at what we can expect for social media marketing for 2017 and beyond.
Influencer marketing

Influencer marketing is the new celebrity endorsement. Influencers have a small to mid-sized following that shares their values, interests and preferences. They cater to small, niche interests instead of traditional celebrity endorsements that are aimed at the broadest audience possible.

Tai Lopez, for example, had a following of startup entrepreneurs while many mommy bloggers promote products to parents in their area with children at the same life stage. A host of data analysis tools let companies understand each of their market segments, their interests, their preferred media channels and detailed demographics.

The hottest trend in social media marketing is then identifying one or a small cadre of influencers who represent the market segments you want to put your product in front of and developing a relationship with them.

One of the benefits of working with influencers is that they already have a close following, and they are masters in social media marketing. A product demonstration or comparison between your product and the competition will result in at least one product demo and a wave of social media mentions. You may see several pieces of digital content published like a product demo video, an article comparing your product against others and a follow up test to take on another challenge – all of which is promoted on social media in advance and shared intensely among followers.

A side benefit of working with influencers is that they are taking the risks of moving to new social media platforms and technologies. They’ll try reaching out to followers on Gab.ai in addition to their Twitter followers or see if Snapchat and Instagram keep their followers engaged. Your company doesn’t have to try and fail to market on different platforms, because the influencers are on the forefront of these trends. And if you don’t like what the influencer is doing, you can cultivate relationships with other influencers.

Visual content

One of the biggest trends in social media marketing is visual content. Visual content is forty times more likely to be shared than written content. Visual content may consist of livestreams, ten minute behind the scenes videos or ten second viral video clips. Visual content is also going viral so to speak because it lets you reach the younger audiences who are cutting their cord with TV while letting you rely on the TV-like feel for a fraction of the cost of television advertising.

Livestreaming is considered one of the top trends for 2017, since it lets people interact with the speaker and other audience members online. This is why Scott Adams of Dilbert fame and YouTuber Sargon of Akkad added livestream, though the former has a comic strip and popular blog and the latter a well followed channel.

Even these major new media figures saw the value of livestreaming in engaging their audiences at an even deeper level. They then post livestreams to their YouTube channels for later viewing by followers in addition to a mix of shorter video clips or other types of content, all of which is shared on social media. The cross-links between videos and social media mentions of all of them raise their brands’ recognition with search engines and generate more social media signals that expand their digital footprint.

Interactive content

Interactive content is one of the major trends in social media marketing. Huffington Post recently discussed this issue on March 1, 2017. In this article about Tai Lopez, he described the best marketing content as VRIN, valuable, rare, inimitable and non-substitutable. Whether it is a health calculator, mapping tool, unique data visualization or infographic that breaks down a complex subject into easily digestible and understandable sections, interactive content offers something of value to the visitor that cannot be scraped by your rivals and is difficult for anyone else to replicate.

You need to add sharing buttons on the pages hosting interactive content and put hash tags and brand names to the links for interactive content to have the greatest impact on social media.

Conclusion

Interactive content is growing in importance for social media marketing, since it can’t be copied by the competition and keeps visitors engaged, ideally with something of value. Influencer marketing offers a low cost, high value proposition for companies while reducing many risks of online marketing. Visual content is one of the hottest trends in social media marketing, and livestreaming is a growing trend in that arena.

 

About Boris Dzhingarov

Boris Dzhingarov graduated UNWE with a major in marketing. He writes for several online sites such as Tech.co, Semrush.com, Tweakyourbiz.com, Socialnomics.net. Boris is the founder of MonetaryLibrary.com and BlogForWeb. You can connect with him at Google +,Twitter, Linkedin or contact him directly at for tips regarding your SEO campaign.

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