Connect with us

SOCIAL

Social Media Marketing Post-COVID: Marketers Predict the Future

Published

on

What will a post-COVID world look like for social media marketers? If there’s anything we’ve learned so far in 2020, it’s that nobody can ever be 100% prepared for the future. We can predict trends, strategize and plan, but we all have to be ready to shift marketing and business strategies at any time. 

Over the past several months, we’ve been hosting discussions within the Social Media Today community to learn more about the pandemic and how it has affected businesses and our field of work. Through these conversations, we were able to identify common social media marketing trends that can help us begin to prepare for the future. 

See our recent “Guide to Social Media Marketing in 2020: Challenges, Opportunities and Lessons from the Pandemic and Beyond” for thought-provoking stories, strategies and advice from marketing professionals in our community.

We followed up with our community more recently to ask their thoughts on what comes next. What will the future look like for people working in social media or digital marketing? Here’s what they predict.

Predictions:

  1. Social media jobs and creativity skills will be valued more than ever.
  2. Video content will continue to rise in production and demand.
  3. The more authentic the content, the better.
  4. Honesty, empathy, and social consciousness will win on social.
  5. Social listening and community engagement will be at the forefront of marketing strategies.
  6. We’ll be constantly adapting to new technology and changing consumer needs.

Continue reading to see what our community anticipates for the future of social media in business.

Predicting the Future of Social Media Marketing

1. Social media jobs and creativity skills will be valued more than ever.

“Everyone has had to rely more on technology over the past few weeks. From video meetings to curbside delivery – every company has had to pivot in some way to keep their business going. Everyone has had to lean into Digital and social media more during COVID and they have learned how to use it differently and better than ever before.  My prediction is that social media content from businesses will become more creative and the digital strategy will be better than ever. The businesses that pushed up their sleeves and got to work on social media marketing efforts during a major crisis will reap the rewards when the crisis starts to fade. Some businesses may have even found a new niche of online business and will continue to grow that area post-COVID.” — Anna Rudicel, Marketing Director of Cyclone Social

Lilach Bullock says, “The COVID crisis will likely make a lasting impact in the world, and social media marketing should reflect that too. Even though restrictions are starting to lift, our lives (the lives of everyone in the world, in fact!) will continue to be very different: social distancing, masks and other protective gear and so on will still to be a big part of everyone’s lives and the way businesses market themselves should reflect that. But out of all marketing strategies, I believe that social media will be the main one to thrive in the post-COVID world. For one thing, it’s easier and cheaper for brands to leverage social media and for another, people all over the world are spending more time indoors than outdoors – and therefore, more time online.”

Dhariana Lozano, President of Block & Ave., also believes social media marketing jobs will be taken more seriously moving forward. Lozano says, “I feel social media content and digital marketing post-COVID might be taken more seriously. Brands that had an engaged online presence were able to still pull their audience and create traffic, sales and new opportunities. Many brands used social media to communicate and keep their audiences updated.” — Dhariana Lozano, President, Block & Ave.

“I see a huge positive shift towards the digital world post-COVID,” says Esa Mbouw, Deputy Head of Business Administration at Swiss German University. “People of all background are adapting to the digital lifestyle and I predict they will be craving for more social media content. This means social media content would be made and delivered to a wider range of audience in all places. The older generation is now keeping up with the trends.”

2. Video content will continue to rise in production and demand.

“I think we are going to see online video continue to explode,” predicts Tabitha Jean Naylor, Owner of TabithaNaylor.com.
“I mean, look at the massive surge in popularity of TikTok since this all started. The companies growth has been incredible. In March of this year alone, it was downloaded 115 million times.”

3. The more authentic the content, the better.

Since the lockdown took place, it’s been really nice to see the human unfiltered side behind brands. Whether that’s videos in the kitchen, with kids and without dressing up, it’s been great to see authentic content. It’s going to be interesting to see whether this continues post-COVID. Similar to brands realizing that their staff can actually work remotely, I expect brands to be more comfortable with creating and publishing unedited visual content.” — Neil Sheth, Digital Content Strategist

No, authentic content is not a new trend, but a certain type of rawness and reliability is now an expectation of brands on social rather than just an audience prefrence.

4. Honesty, empathy, and social consciousness will win on social.

Tabitha Jean Naylor recognizes a shiftting trend towards empethetic messaging from brands on social media: “I think that, at least for the foreseeable future, we’re going to see brand messaging that’s much more empathetic and compassionate.

So much has already changed over the past few months. Many have adjusted their messaging to align with what’s going on in the world and within in their organization. I predict that messaging will soon focus on offering hope and positivity to counterbalance the sadness and uncertainty.” — Rachel Strella, Founder, Strella Social Media

See also  Facebook machine learning aims to modify faces, hands and… outfits

“I think that people are looking to share their experiences so that they can have that connection to others. I also think that gratitude will play a central theme in influencing. I don’t think that audiences will have the same fan following for mega influencers like Kylie Jenner, who do a lot of self-promotion and emphasis “outer beauty” I think that she grew her fan base because there was a need for people who wanted to be like her. Now, I think people will resonate more with people that show “inner beauty” in both mind and spirit.”  — Dory Caplin, CEO of Dream Team Concepts

“The digital marketing world will increase fourfold. I see it growing exponentially every day. Social media content will be a mixed bag of truths, half truths and outright propaganda. The challenge to us consumers will be discerning truth from fiction; noise from facts and useful information.” — Roy Benford, Real Estate Consultant at KellerWilliams Realty

5. Social listening and community engagement will be at the forefront of marketing strategies.

Deborah Sweeney, CEO, MyCorporation.com, predicts a new era of brand-consumer relationships and engagement behaviors on social. “In a post-COVID world, I think there will be a continued emphasis on the needs of the consumer. Social media will become what it has always meant to be: social. Brands will ask consumers for their feedback on how they are doing and what they can offer that has the ability to make the consumer’s life easier. Brands will listen to this feedback and implement new offerings in their company.”

“Social media content will be created that better engages the consumer — asking questions, sharing polls, and hosting mini-events like Twitter chats and movie watch-along nights that are relevant to their industry on Twitter.”

6. We’ll be constantly adapting to new technology and changing consumer needs.

As always, new technologies will appear and social media platforms with continue updating their platforms to align with new online social needs. As we’ve said before, at any moment things can change; it’s important to never rely fully on any social platform to meet all your marketing needs. For example, be prepared for data and privacy updates to limit your targeting capabilities on social.

The world will forever be changing around us, but as marketers, we seem to be well-equipt to handle any unexpected obstacles thrown in our direction.

To read more on this topic and explore advice from our community on preparing for the future, go check out the complete “Guide to Social Media Marketing in 2020: Challenges, Opportunities and Lessons from the Pandemic and Beyond.”

Socialmediatoday.com

Continue Reading
Advertisement

SOCIAL

Meta’s Developing and ‘Ethical Framework’ for the Use of Virtual Influencers

Published

on

Meta's Developing and 'Ethical Framework' for the Use of Virtual Influencers


With the rise of digital avatars, and indeed, fully digital characters that have evolved into genuine social media influencers in their own right, online platforms now have an obligation to establish clear markers as to what’s real and what’s not, and how such creations can be used in their apps.

The coming metaverse shift will further complicate this, with the rise of virtual depictions blurring the lines of what will be allowed, in terms of representation. But with many virtual influencers already operating, Meta is now working to establish ethical boundaries on their application.

As explained by Meta:

From synthesized versions of real people to wholly invented “virtual influencers” (VIs), synthetic media is a rising phenomenon. Meta platforms are home to more than 200 VIs, with 30 verified VI accounts hosted on Instagram. These VIs boast huge follower counts, collaborate with some of the world’s biggest brands, fundraise for organizations like the WHO, and champion social causes like Black Lives Matter.”

Some of the more well-known examples on this front are Shudu, who has more than 200k followers on Instagram, and Lil’ Miquela, who has an audience of over 3 million in the app.

At first glance, you wouldn’t necessarily realize that this is not an actual person, which makes such characters a great vehicle for brand and product promotions, as they can be utilized 24/7, and can be placed into any environment. But that also leads to concerns about body image perception, deepfakes, and other forms of misuse through false or unclear representation.

See also  How Europe overtook the US in championing free markets

Deepfakes, in particular, may be problematic, with Meta citing this campaign, with English football star David Beckham, as an example of how new technologies are evolving to expand the use of language, as one element, for varying purpose.

The well-known ‘DeepTomCruise’ account on TikTok is another example of just how far these technologies have come, and it’s not hard to imagine a scenario where they could be used to, say, show a politician saying or doing something that he or she actually didn’t, which could have significant real world impacts.

Which is why Meta is working with developers and experts to establish clearer boundaries on such use – because while there is potential for harm, there are also beneficial uses for such depictions.

Imagine personalized video messages that address individual followers by name. Or celebrity brand ambassadors appearing as salespeople at local car dealerships. A famous athlete would make a great tutor for a kid who loves sports but hates algebra.

Such use cases will increasingly become the norm as VR and AR technologies are developed, with these platforms placing digital characters front and center, and establishing new norms for digital connection.

It would be better to know what’s real and what’s not, and as such, Meta needs clear regulations to remove dishonest depictions, and enforce transparency over VI use.

But then again, much of what you see on Instagram these days is not real, with filters and editing tools altering people’s appearance well beyond what’s normal, or realistic. That can also have damaging consequences, and while Meta’s looking to implement rules on VI use, there’s arguably a case for similar transparency in editing tools applied to posted videos and images as well.

See also  WhatsApp Adds New Stickers for Mother's Day

That’s a more complex element, particularly as such tools also enable people to feel more comfortable in posting, which no doubt increases their in-app activity. Would Meta be willing to put more focus on this element if it could risk impacting user engagement? The data on the impact of Instagram on people’s mental health are pretty clear, with comparison being a key concern.

Should that also come under the same umbrella of increased digital transparency?

It’s seemingly not included in the initial framework as yet, but at some stage, this is another element that should be examined, especially given the harmful effects that social media usage can have on young women.

But however you look at it, this is no doubt a rising element of concern, and it’s important for Meta to build guardrails and rules around the use of virtual influencers in their apps.

You can read more about Meta’s approach to virtual influencers here.





Source link

Continue Reading

SOCIAL

Meta Publishes New Guide to the Various Security and Control Options in its Apps

Published

on

Meta Publishes New Guide to the Various Security and Control Options in its Apps


Meta has published a new set of safety tips for journalists to help them protect themselves in the evolving online connection space, which, for the most part, also apply to all users more broadly, providing a comprehensive overview of the various tools and processes that it has in place to help people avoid unwanted attention online.

The 32-page guide is available in 21 different languages, and provides detailed overviews of Meta’s systems and profile options for protection and security, with specific sections covering Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp.

The guide begins with the basics, including password protections and enabling two-factor authentication.

It also outlines tips for Page managers in securing their business profiles, while there are also notes on what to do if you’ve been hacked, advice for protection on Messenger and guidance on bullying and harassment.

Meta security guide

For Instagram, there are also general security tips, along with notes on its comment moderation tools.

Meta security guide

While for WhatsApp, there are explainers on how to delete messages, how to remove messages from group chats, and details on platform-specific data options.

Meta security guide

There are also links to various additional resource guides and tools for more context, providing in-depth breakdowns of when and how to action the various options.

It’s a handy guide, and while there are some journalist-specific elements included, most of the tips do apply to any user, so it could well be a valuable resource for anyone looking to get a better handle on your various privacy tools and options.

Definitely worth knowing either way – you can download the full guide here.

See also  Facebook's Removing its Free Access Option for Facebook Workplace



Source link

Continue Reading

SOCIAL

Twitter bans account linked to Iran leader over video threatening Trump

Published

on

Twitter bans account linked to Iran leader over video threatening Trump


Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei meets with relatives of slain commander Qasem Soleimani ahead of the second anniverary of his death in a US drone strike in Iraq – Copyright POOL/AFP/File Tom Brenner

Twitter said Saturday it had permanently suspended an account linked to Iran’s supreme leader that posted a video calling for revenge for a top general’s assassination against former US president Donald Trump.

“The account referenced has been permanently suspended for violating our ban evasion policy,” a Twitter spokesperson told AFP.

The account, @KhameneiSite, this week posted an animated video showing an unmanned aircraft targeting Trump, who ordered a drone strike in Baghdad two years ago that killed top Iranian commander General Qassem Soleimani.

Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s main accounts in various languages remain active. Last year, another similar account was suspended by Twitter over a post also appearing to reference revenge against Trump.

The recent video, titled “Revenge is Definite”, was also posted on Khamenei’s official website.

According to Twitter, the company’s top priority is keeping people safe and protecting the health of the conversation on the platform.

The social media giant says it has clear policies around abusive behavior and will take action when violations are identified.

As head of the Quds Force, the foreign operations arm of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, Soleimani was the architect of its strategy in the Middle East.

He and his Iraqi lieutenant were killed by a US drone strike outside Baghdad airport on January 3, 2020.

Khamenei has repeatedly promised to avenge his death.

On January 3, the second anniversary of the strike, the supreme leader and ultraconservative President Ebrahim Raisi once again threatened the US with revenge.

See also  WhatsApp Adds New Stickers for Mother's Day

Trump’s supporters regularly denounce the banning of the Republican billionaire from Twitter, underscoring that accounts of several leaders considered authoritarian by the United States are allowed to post on the platform.



Source link

Continue Reading

DON'T MISS ANY IMPORTANT NEWS!
Subscribe To our Newsletter
We promise not to spam you. Unsubscribe at any time.
Invalid email address

Trending