Vijay Shenoy, AVP Operations South, WATConsult pens down the social media marketing trends 2019 that will change the M & A segment this year.
Social media has been one of the pivotal mediums of communication for consumers of the digital era.
In 2019, it is estimated that there will be around 258.27 million social network users in India and 2.7 billion users globally.
It has clearly emerged as a marketing medium that brands of all scale are keen on acing.
The challenge, however, is to keep up with changing user behaviour and their pattern of content consumption, especially, with the diminishing attention span of users on digital, which has further reduced in the mobile-first age.
Here are few trends to foresee and be prepared as a marketer in 2019.
1. Moment Marketing
Human’s attention span is said to be smaller than that of a goldfish’s. It makes a whole lot easier for brands to stay on top users’ mind if they are able to create real-time content that resonates with users. We’ve entered the era of in-moment marketing.
Technology has a big play in this, more specifically through social listening (monitoring) tools. We got to look beyond using them for reputation management and customer service. With the advancement in Artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms, these very tools will help brands in social selling and in-moment social content creation.
In the current year, we saw brands and people experimenting with various video formats on their social media pages. I would say it’s going to be the norm in 2019. In fact, many experts believe, 80% of what we consume online will soon be video content.
Social media being visually appealing medium, videos tend to have larger attention span retention. The possibilities are endless considering the mix a brand could explore from Facebook live to Instagram stories.
Video chats could be explored as a brilliant way to connect with customers through social media. Video on demand service such as Facebook Watch and IGTV are poised to change the landscape of video led marketing. Another interesting platform to lookout for in short-form mobile video led content engagement space is TikTok.
3. Augmented Reality
Many may shun Augmented Reality as just another buzz word, curious marketers should capitalize on it as first movers to explore it to their benefit. The augmented and virtual reality market is expected to reach a market size of 209.2 billion U.S. dollars by 2022.
Snapchat has been able to hugely influence this space through its facial filters and Geo-filters — AR filters showing your location. Facebook and Instagram are closely following the same footsteps and may better it with time. It resonates well with users too who are looking for experiential high from the immersive affairs.
4. Influencer Marketing:
Influencer marketing isn’t dead, it’s evolving and would continue to be part of brands social media strategy. Here is a good reason why it’s true – the changing demographics and consumer behaviour of the digital first generation. The current generation of millennials and Generation-Z’s need social proof before they decide to buy anything.
The new breed of influencers championing this are the Micro and Nano influencers. The brands too should evolve to understand and prioritize their expectations off them. These influencers might not be Instagram stars or YouTube millionaires but they are very engaged and are experts in their niche.
5. AI Powered Social Customer Care
Messenger apps and chatbots can’t be viewed in isolation. They are to me elements which complete the social media marketing strategy. Think about it, social media platforms are not meant to be mere content holders but enablers of meaningful conversation.
Artificial intelligence is being adopted to strengthen customer interaction, it has added a new dimension to addressing a brands customer online. With Chatbots being seamlessly integrated with social platform as in case of Facebook messenger it will continue to makes social media interaction engaging. With WhatsApp business API having been released late this year, we will also be seeing a rise of WhatsApp as a social customer service cannel.
As we bid adieu to a fantastic year, which saw the emergence of new ways to engage customers, we all can be rest assured that 2019 is going to be even more exciting. Digital technology in true sense has changed the landscape of marketing and advertising. It would continue to do so in 2019 too.