Social media has the potential to help small businesses in growing and expanding their reach and for this reason, social media marketing trends and dynamics becomes more important for small and medium businesses. They need keeping abreast with the changes.
MarketSherpa predicts that 95% of Internet population in the age-group of 18-34 will follow brands via social networking.
Let’s see how industry experts see social media marketing in the coming year
Karan Mehta, Marketing Manager, Naukrigulf.com
- Adapting to people
Brands should become more concerned about needs of customers instead of relying on social media ads. Concerns should be views, comments and shares instead of clicks and impressions. Simply put, brands should start conversation with customers through social media.
- Chatbots serving customers
Chatbots is gaining popularity because it supports liver conversation. It is more popular on Facebook than any other media and the day isn’t far when chatbots will be used for 24×7 customer service.
- Live video going mainstream
It started in 2016 but it will gain momentum in the coming year. In 2017, the brand will start using the technology for video meetings to communicate with the targeted customers.
- Better Facebook ad targeting
Facebook is expected to provide results based on personal interaction with customers instead of the results based on keywords. When brands can get feedback directly from customers then they don’t need relying on broad searches.
Prateek Shah, Founder, Digitaldefynd
- Shift from shares & likes to conversion driven metrics
Present focus is on comments, shares and likes but they don’t contribute anything to revenue. The shift should be towards conversion-driven metrics like sales.
- WhatsApp marketing
WhatsApp has tremendous potential to promote businesses but it needs to be explored to invent new ways of introducing businesses through this mobile platform.
- Diversify portfolio
Marketers are relying more on social media and not diversifying their portfolios that is necessary to take advantage of the digital market.
Saumar Deka, Digital Media Marketing Manager, Happiest Minds Technologies
- LinkedIn for advertising
LinkedIn has better self-serving tools for marketing and also it provides more opportunities.
- Twitter for identifying influencer marketing trends
Twitter can discourage the trend of bringing paid influencers for marketing and manufacturing.
- Role of Google+ influencer marketing
Google+ is now part of the latest social media marketing trends as it has the potential to revolutionize the social marketing.
Zubin Kutar, Digital Marketing Head, Communications & Social Media, Tata Consultancy Services – TCS
Chatbots are prepared to play a crucial role in simplifying man-machine relationship. In future, all customer related issues will be resolved faster and with less human intervention.
- Big Data
Social channels will rely more on Big Data to understand behavior of targeted users. The data will be collected through first party and third party cookies and it will help in sharper targeting of content to reach out to the potential audience.
Success of Pokemon has brought the AR/VR into limelight and brands are considering leveraging that technology but whether a brand is able to use the technology depends on its ability to connect with its customers.
Rajeev Sharma, C0-Founder, GreyBox Technologies
- Refinement trend
In 2017, digital marketing will see a trend that will be more focused achieving sales goals instead of simply marketing with the help of social channels. The marketers will need more than tools and features the social platforms have to offer.
- Leveraging location based marketing and IOT
Location based apps are available and they provide interesting information on weather. These apps can be used to offer businesses based on weather condition. For instance, a hot soup could be offered for a chill day and a chill beer for a hot day.
Rohit Uttamchandani, Head – Digital Advertising & Content Marketing, Social Beat
- Live video will pick up pace
Use of live video has already taken pace and it is expected to continue with bolster in the coming year. The driving force behind this force is people’s fear of missing out (FOMO) on something new. Facebook will prioritize video content and it is an opportunity for brands to leverage the new and innovative way to connect to their customers.
- Snapchat’s popularity will increase further
Snapchat will continue its growth in the coming year. It is popular among young Internet users as they are busy sharing stories about brands and experiences with new products. Snapchat is also helping in building brands and introducing new businesses.
- Facebook advertising will no longer be as cheap as it used to
Facebook is the most powerful medium of advertising and communication in social media and it is due to its wide reach and reduced cost. Over 3 million businesses are already using Facebook advertising and this number is increasing with each passing day. But Facebook revealed a different trend in its Q3 2016 report. It is mentioned that the platform won’t be able to withstand more ad load hence will increase prices to allow serious businesses only.
Sanjay Mehta, CEO, Mirum India
Social media marketing should be seen as a part of digital marketing and not as an exclusive media platform. Number of Internet users is increasing and it is good news for marketers. It is time to think of making money instead of limiting the efforts to calculating cost of advertisements and finding low cost ad agencies.
The social media trends, or it will be more appropriate to call them digital marketing trends as some experts have indicated that social media should be included in digital marketing, will take a 360 degree turn in the new year. Leading social media channels like Facebook, Twitter and Google have acknowledged that they will bring massive changes in their features. Facebook is going to increase cost of ads and Google+ will provide more teeth to marketers.
It’s time marketers take stock of the situation and change their strategies to suit to the latest trends. Experts have opined their voice on the trends that will rule digital marketing in 2017. Now it is your turn to follow those trends.