It is safe to say that in this tech-driven world, social media has become an integral part of our life. Moreover, with the amount of exposure that social media gives to organizations, social media marketing has become synonymous with digital marketing. Although social media platforms are not static, the habits and the preferences of the audience are always changing. Thus, it is inevitable for social media marketers and social media marketing companies to evolve according to the trends to catch the pulse of the audience regularly.

With the immense amount of pressure and competition, social media marketing agencies must understand the market and remain ahead of their peers. The modern age organizations will need the services of an elite social media marketing agency, which can guide them through all the nuances of social media marketing and take their business at the helm.

Opting for your business’s presence on social media becomes more important to have their presence felt, while the world is still getting back to normalcy after being hit with the pandemic caused due to COVID19. There was a time during the lockdown and most part of 2020 when many businesses were affected, but those that existed on social media suffered a little lesser blow than those that didn’t have any presence at all since most of the businesses happened online.

To understand what the year 2021 will have in store, we need to understand the social media trends that will drive the businesses forward.

Top Social Media Marketing Trends you can’t ignore in 2021

Content will remain the King

A content that spans for a short length will be able to garner more attention from the people as the modern age audiences don’t have a larger attention span. Short term content such as Instagram and Snapchat stories can prove to be amazing for the organizations as the audiences will get the snippets about their product.

Content formats like stories are to the point, engaging, and ignite specific curiosity amongst the audience in anticipation of what is to come next.  This method is addictive, and people can go on hours looking at the stories. The engagement rate of such a technique is very high, and it also plays a vital role in increasing the visibility of your business across top social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat. 64% of the total marketers have already incorporated this social media marketing strategy; thus you need to pull up your socks, hire a competent social media marketing firm, and see your business soar high.

Niche platforms will rise

Since the internet became accessible to ordinary people, out of all the apps, social media and gaming apps have got the most attention from the user. For social media, platforms such as Facebook and Instagram have ruled the roost for the majority of the time. But this norm is now changing.

There is a considerable rise in the number of users of niche social media apps such as TikTok, Twitch, and LinkedIn. The reason behind this is that social media marketing firms find their targeted audience on the niche platform with ease as compared to the market leaders that have all kinds of audiences. For example, many B2B companies are using LinkedIn to market their product as they know that even with a lesser following as compared to Facebook, LinkedIn will have the right kind of people that will be interested in their product.

A prudent social media marketing agency will understand the genre of your business and the targeted audience. This will help you in selecting the best possible social media platform.

Domination of videos

Believe it or not, but more than written content and pictures, video is the most dominant form via which companies can promote themselves on social media platforms. According to a study done by Cisco, by 2022, 82% of the total online content that you will see will be only videos. Therefore, if you are still focused on pictures and writing about your product, it’s time to change your strategy for a better social media experience.

A competent social media marketing company will initiate creating video content by sharing short videos on stories as well as advertisements. Focus on adding videos on the platforms that are traditionally known as the base platform for images or text.

Influencer and Word of mouth Marketing

Word of mouth marketing is a result of building concrete social media communities, and this, too, is going to be a significant factor in the year 2021. Good social media communities will allow you to engage with a social media influencer who can be famous regionally or even be an international star. Thus, if your company is looking to include the hyper-local strategy, a regional social media influencer can come in handy.

Moreover, word of mouth publicity will raise the goodwill of your company along with the strategies applied by the social media marketing agencies. It will provide the dual benefit of increasing the market presence and enhancing the market position of the company.

Social media influencers provide a human touch to your marketing strategy as people follow them, and thus the targeted audience can be readily engaged with your product.

Moreover, there are high chances of your content going viral with social media influencer marketing if the influencer has a stronghold in his/her niche. The influencers have a strong connection with their followers; thus, you can get higher customer engagement at a very less cost.

Studies show that 61% of the consumers will trust the product recommended by their family or friends; thus, word of mouth and influencer marketing will be a big social media marketing trend in the year 2021. Thus personalization becomes a huge factor here as the social media influencers know what their audiences like and can promote your product in that manner.

Related: A step by step guide to convince influencers to promote your offerings

Social media as customer service

Customer service is a vital component in any business, but as far as social media marketing is concerned, it is offering a lot more than you can see. Social media helps in addressing the challenges related to customer service effectively.

But social media marketing companies can help your organization in this aspect, as social media platforms are a better method for the customer to communicate what they actually need.

Statistically speaking, over 25% of the customers have used social media platforms to share their queries related to the product. And around 23% of them believe that social media platforms are the best method to have a 24-hour connection(one-on-one) with the company. Triggering sustainable customer engagement, social media marketing firms have all the qualities to hold and increase the engagement with time.

Since social media is very convenient, companies are focusing on every social media platform that attracts their targeted audience and are doing impeccable things to woo them.

Adoption of Augmented Reality

There will be a massive rise in the adoption of Augmented Reality as social media marketing will increase its bar and will show real-life things to people. For example, in 2016, Pokémon GO used nostalgia and AR to its optimum and was immensely successful. In the same manner, with growing social media platforms, customers will demand more engaging content, and this is where AR will come into the picture.

The superimposition of the virtual world in real life will benefit organizations and companies from all industries. The customers will benefit by getting a chance to have a hands-on experience of the product before they use it.

Major social media platforms such as Instagram and Snapchat have already started using Augmented Reality filters to their stories to provide a whole new experience to their customers. AR will enhance the visual content and, with it, the USP of your company.

Memefied social media

A study found out that memes are popular amongst 13-35 year old. Nearly 55% of 13 to 35-year-old social media users send memes every week and 30% of them send memes every day. Netizens extensively used memes during the lockdown. Memes started to blow off some steam and blossomed into a full-blown social media trend. Memes are expected to play an important role in the digital marketing campaigns of brands in the future as they will aid the brands in reaching out to their customers better.

To effectively engage their customers through memes, the brands should take the following actions –

  • Engaging with the meme community
    To boost the virality of their content, brands should focus on connecting with popular meme communities.
  • Share user-generated memes
    By sharing user-generated content and giving the credit of the content to the content creators, brands can build stronger brand connections.
  • Be aware of what you post
    An innocent meme Pepe, the frog, caused a lot of trouble for Wendy’s. This was because the character was associated with the Alt-right movement and people took offense to this gesture from Wendy’s.
  • Always be on the right side of the law
    Memes can cause uproar and many countries have formulated laws to bring memes under the legal net. That’s why before publishing any meme, it is important to make sure that no rules are broken.

Social gaming is on the rise

Although gaming was already popular on social media, COVID-19 provided the nitro boost to the industry. According to research statistics by Twitter, around 1 billion tweets regarding gaming were sent on Twitter in the first half of 2020. As COVID-19 spread, people turned to game to keep themselves engaged.

Within all social media channels, there are multiple forums and groups that are concentrated around specific games like PubG, Among Us and Warcraft. Platforms like Twitch are fuelling the rise of gaming-related conversations.

Social gaming is proving to be a platform where people who are not able to meet face-to-face with each other are connecting over the common love of gaming. Experts expect that the digital connections formed in gaming forums to continue forward.

Brands can leverage the power of social gaming in the following ways

Utilizing live streaming opportunities

Game live streaming is a popular source of income for professional gamers, as platforms like Twitch share a part of their advertising revenues with gamers who are able to attract a huge audience. Live streaming can prove to be an excellent advertising opportunity for brands as it is a cost-effective marketing strategy that provides direct engagement with the users.

Influencer marketing

Popular online gamers enjoy a celebrity-like status amongst their followers. Brands can leverage the power of such influencers to their advantage by signing deals with them to promote their products or services during or after the game.

Product placements in popular games

Animal Crossing is a popular video game series by Nintendo which has a huge following in Asia. Brands like KFC Philippines used the game to promote their products by placing a virtual 8 piece chicken bucket in the game that could be exchanged for a real bucket in any KFC outlets. Sentosa in Singapore went a step further by hosting a series of virtual activities around the theme of Animal Crossing.

Final Words

Social media marketing is on a roller coaster ride, which is only going up. No, this is not the line from the book “Fault in our stars,” but this a fact related to the social media platforms. Top digital marketing companies can prove to be your much-needed ally and guide you through so that you realize the more significant benefits coming to your way in the nascent stage itself.  Thus, the companies should reach out to their target audience, and taking the help of an expert social media marketer will ensure that you achieve your goal.