April 22, 2019
Over the years, social media platforms have become the force for progress in the marketing world. Initially created for completely different purposes, these platforms have become a place where businesses can easily market their products.
Social media marketing is definitely here to stay, and here’s why:
- 73% of marketers say that social media marketing was “quite effective” or “very effective” for their business;
- Social media is the most influential advertising channel, according to 50% of Gen Z and 42% of millennials;
- Over 88% of companies use social media platforms for marketing purposes.
Marketing on social media is also a quick way for your message to get viral. And, with many effective tools for business, marketing on social media has become more effortless.
Right now, social media marketing is on the rise. But what does the future hold? What skills will be crucial for a social media marketer to have? What trends will define the scope of social media marketing in the future?
Let’s take a look.
Trends that Shape the Future
The landscape of social media marketing is changing every day, and it’s not an exaggeration. With every update, businesses are introduced to new possibilities, new tools are being created to boost creativity and make social media marketing even more powerful.
On-the-Spot Content Replacing Pre-Produced Content
The perception of the perfect content for social media is changing as well. Right now, users prefer seeing a storytelling format. 92% of consumers want brands to make more ads that feel like a story. This prompted Instagram and Facebook to come up with the format of Stories.
Current data shows that stories will remain a preferred type of content both by social media users and businesses:
The reason why users love the format of Stories is that it depicts on-the-spot events rather than preliminary planned and edited content. More reasons why users like this type of content include:
- Stories don’t require too much attention;
- Millennials and Gen Z thrive on an authentic and meaningful relationship with brands who let them see behind-the-scenes activities;
- Editing stories is effortless with many filters at hand.
Users love in-the-moment, raw content. It makes the product and the brand seem more authentic. Thus, it is expected that this format will shape the content that will dominate social media in the future.
Influencer marketing was introduced to us by social media. And, over the past several years, it has exploded. Reportedly, Google searches for influencer marketing grew 1500% over the last 3 years.
Social media users adore influencers, even naming them more trustworthy than celebrities. It is reported that 30% of consumers are more likely to buy a product recommended by a non-celebrity blogger, and here’s why:
- Influencers a relatable. They often communicate with their followers and share honest reviews.
- Even though brands pay influencers for promoting a product, most of them are highly unlikely to recommend something they don’t like.
- Authenticity is one of the main reasons why social media users trust influencers. They also provide their followers with personalized content. Thus, they remain relevant, catering to the needs of their subscribers.
Collaborating with a social media influencer brings a ton of benefits to brands. For instance, a collaboration between Scramble Brand Official and YouTube influencers Jenna Marbles and Julien Solomita helped the company sell their limited edition rashguards within several hours. And, due to the increased demand, the company did a restock and sold out within a few days.
Many famous brands, like Daniel Wellington, also often collaborate with influencers, getting immense profits and new customers. Thus, this trend is likely here to stay and impact the purchasing decisions of social media users.
AI-Powered Personalized Experiences
AI is shaping the future of many industries in the business world, and social media marketing is no exception. With features, introduced by AI, creating personalized experiences and running a successful social media campaign has become easier.
In the future, social media marketing is expected to see the further development of the following AI-powered features:
- Using slack bots for customer support. With this feature, it has become easier for customer support service to handle communications with customers. This AI-powered solution uses machine learning to anticipate possible solutions to a problem.
- Facial recognition. This feature has already been on Facebook for a long time. It recognizes the faces of your friends on a photo and automatically tags them to make sharing content even faster.
- Machine learning is also used for introducing a social media user with ads based on their activity on a certain platform. This is how Facebook ads work and what Instagram uses to build the Discover page.
It is expected that the influence of AI on social media marketing will become even stronger in the future. Many other features, connected to personalization and anticipation tools, are also expected to be developed in order to improve the whole experience.
Defining a Perfect SMM Employee: Key Skills
Now, let’s talk about key skills that will shape the hiring decisions of social media marketers in the future. With social media developing and changing so fast, SMM professionals are expected to adapt to the changing environment.
Here’s what different HR professionals say about the key SMM skills that will impact hiring decisions in the future.
Jeff Bullas, a marketing specialist and a famous influencer, as listed by Forbes, calls a future social media marketer a “ninja geek”, saying that he/she will have to tackle many things at once and stay updated 24/7. Thus, the key skills that will help to handle this flow of data and information are strategy planning, community management, and content optimization.
Professionals at Robert Half, a global human resource consulting firm, agree with Jeff Bullas, adding that essential skills will also include:
- Adapting the product to the fast-changing world of social media;
- Employing different analytics tools to receive regularly updated social data;
- Having excellent communication and leadership skills to delegate tasks and track the performance of the team.
Thus, being highly adaptable and always updated are key skills that companies will be looking for in a social media marketer. However, basic skills like communication and planning will play no small part in other key skills needed for social media marketing in the future.
Social media marketing is definitely here to stay as developers invest more and more effort in its development. In the future, it is expected to remain one of the key marketing strategies. The key stipulation is to always remain updated. So, keep up with these trends and key skills that will shape the future of social media marketing to make sure that your campaigns perform successfully.
Adriana is a professional writer and an editor at Studicus.com. She also has a Master’s degree in Marketing, having worked several years for major companies in the U.S. Adriana’s articles bring valuable insights to the readers, supported by credible resources and thorough research.