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5 Social Media Trends to Look Out for in 2017

By Haylie Rawlings

Social media is a space that is ever changing. With all of the new technologies, it can be hard for companies and consumers to keep up with what’s going on. We all have that slight hesitation when there is a new social network introduced or that quick moment of irritation when Facebook changes something. Well, those moments are only going to continue.

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When Instagram added ‘Instagram Stories’ there were many people who were surprised, saying they ‘copied’ Snapchat. Yes, they can do that. Standardization is becoming the norm for social media, among many other things. Don’t miss out on these 5 anticipated social media trends of 2017:

1. Video Wins Again

Social video is everywhere. More than 50% of people in the U.S. who visit Facebook every day watch at least one video. But, the numbers are only going to get bigger. If you were to take a look at your Facebook feed right now, chances are you’ll come across a plethora of videos. For example, there’s Tasty. Nearly everyone has seen the Tasty videos on Facebook. They post enticing videos that look delicious, I’m sure we all could watch them for hours.

Social Media

While not everyone will post videos quite like Tasty, we will still see companies using videos often to communicate their message. In fact, 51.9% of marketing professionals worldwide name video as the type of content with the best ROI. Want a real life example of this? Today Bailey’s is using this same technique for traditional marketing. What are you waiting for?

2. Platform Standardization

This has been a trend throughout 2016, however, it will only increase in 2017. Take the previous mentioned ‘Instagram Stories’ example. When Instagram offered this feature many people viewed it as copying Snapchat. We will continue to see this among many different networks. Snapchat and Instagram aren’t the only two that have experienced this in 2016… take a look:

Next year, we will see a lot of this trend with every major platform. By the end of next year, it’s likely all major platforms will enable users to: create and share video content, create and share live video content and the ability to discover news and what’s going on around them based on location.

3. Organic Traffic Gets Tougher

At first, earning attention and credit in the social world was pretty straightforward. Getting Likes on Facebook and followers on Twitter is how you received attention, with no need to beg a reporter to put you in the newspaper. Now, Instagram, Facebook and other social media networks are removing chronological updates and are using algorithms to determine what they show users.

Have you seen the Facebook algorithm? Take a look…

Social Media

So what does this mean for businesses? Or marketers? It will become tougher to get traffic without spending money on social ads. BUT, posting content that is relevant and holds the important aspects shown above can lead to valuable engagements.

4. Automation Becoming MORE Mainstream

Automation is already a huge part of social media. Automation helps with efficiency and accuracy, and many companies are adopting it into their strategies. Applications like SproutSocial and Hubspot are essential tools for any grownup marketer. These apps are becoming smarter and more intuitive, and the use of them will continue to grow. Take a look at this handy graphic that shows how useful automation is:

Social Media

We will also begin to see many companies using automation on social networking to interact with consumers/clients. For example, Love Your Melon, a philanthropic apparel brand, uses automation on Facebook. When you place an order via their website, you get an automated Facebook message saying your order is confirmed. Then, when the package ships, you get another Facebook message with the tracking number. This is a trend that many businesses are starting to use.

5. AI and the Rise of Robots

The rise of AI can be attributed to the explosion of new technologies and data. AI is being used on social media networks currently, and most people don’t even recognize it! A few of these tactics are:

  • Facebook tags friends in photos using facial recognition
  • Learning technology of Facebook that uses suggestions, Newsfeed algorithms and trending topics
  • Pinterest uses ‘robots’ to boost image recognition and search

While this is not near as advanced as AI will continue to become, it’s still there. Expect to see more of these trends in digital marketing automation tools and beyond.

So what are the implications of these trends? As marketers, you will need to let go of the tactics that are becoming outdated. We live in a fast-changing world and you will need to keep reinventing. So keep your eyes peeled, and use these to your advantage!