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2020 Social Media Trends


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January… A new year, with new opportunities to get started on the right foot. We are full of motivation, drive and excitement of what the year has in store for our business. 

If you are anything like a majority of businesses out there, you might be at a loss of where to start when it comes to your social media strategies for 2020.

Hot digital trends form and change in a blink of an eye. 

How are you to keep up? 

We have compiled a list of some of the top digital trends to be aware of and implement this year. 

THE “LIKE” FEATURE IS DEAD

Social media has changed drastically. Instagram used to be all about beautiful pictures that were sure to gain you followers and engagement. It is no longer just about a pretty photo, it is now about what you have to say. It’s time to engage with your following and tell a story. 

“Likes” are a thing of the past now. You are still able to view your likes but this is no longer visible to others. As a brand, you want to find a way to adapt to this change. Audiences want meaningful connections with the people and companies they follow. They want to see the brands they like doing something that directly affects them or the causes that they care about. 

VIDEO CONTENT WILL DOMINATE

Instagram’s features of IGTV and stories are now a sure fire way to gain engagement with your following. Recent studies show that Instragam video posts gain 2x the engagement of other post types. The great thing about the videos is that you can tell a story with them. This really enables you to find new ways to increase engagement with your brand and reach a larger audience. All social media platforms are investing heavily into video, so it might be time to jump on this bandwagon.

VIDEO PLATFORMS

TikTok is rapidly gaining popularity, especially with GenZ. GenZ’s are tech-savvy, craving innovation, personalization, brand purpose and transparency. We highly recommend keeping an eye on this social platform or jump on the TikTok bandwagon.  That is, if you think this would be a place you could communicate with your customers. Brands are already on this platform utilizing it to their advantage. TikTok currently has 500+ Million users and was the third most downloaded app in 2019. 

INFLUENCER MARKETING WILL CONTINUE TO SOAR

Influencers with large followings are no longer the target of brands. Brands are now more interested and looking at building relationships with the Micro Influencer. Unlike macro influencers, using Micro influencers will equal closer relationships and better engagement. More brands will be connecting with nano influencers, which are accounts with even a smaller following than Micro with only a couple thousand followers. 

USER GENERATED CONTENT

According to Sprout social and the research they have done, user generated content will be one of the top social media trends this year. User generated content involves establishing a connection with your audience through customer content. This will encourage a constant stream of content from your followers. Why not create a personal hashtag to your brand and allow your customers to showcase your brand for you. Better yet, add in a giveaway where your followers use your hashtag on a story image to gain even more engagement on your brand. There are so many opportunities here.  

Rethink what social platforms deserve your attention this year. 

With so many social platforms out there, you really should think about what platforms deserve your attention. What platform will reach your audience and gain your brand engagement? Really focus on your top two. It is crucial to understand how you are utilizing your time and what will bring you the best results. Being on all platforms will drain you and not bring out the best results with your social strategy.

Take some time to really look at where you can reach your audience best. 

We hope that you will take away a few of these trends for 2020 and integrate them into your social media strategy. Really think about what you can do to make 2020 your year. 

What are your goals for your social media strategy this year?

We would love to hear!


-Melissa Schalk

 

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‘Tis The Season For Holiday Networking


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It’s that festive time of year, where we are all attending both personal and professional holiday events. If you are like most people, you may be faced with keeping a conversation going with someone you don’t know very well. In addition to watching the alcohol consumption, I have a few tricks up my sleeve for these events, including some strategies to engage with folks and even enjoy these events.

In general, it is important to look the part at these events. A close second is to be comfortable. And, a good rule of thumb is to be a little bit over-dressed if you are not sure. In general, a suit is a great idea, with or without a tie, or a dress is a flexible choice.

Most of all, look to be inclusive. Try to keep your body language open and welcome newcomers into your conversation. Once you make eye contact, a simple “Hi, I’m Harper!” will break the ice. Then you can introduce the newcomer to the group you are in.

Have a few conversation starters up your sleeve. I always try to have an interesting (non-political) current event to discuss, as well as a tidbit about a home sports team or two. You may find that you don’t end up discussing either topic directly, but it can elicit where someone went to college or perhaps an experience they had related to the area or current event topic.

Also, there are several perennial icebreaker questions that work well in any networking or social situation, and all are predicated on the notion that people always like to talk about themselves. Here are some to keep handy:

  1. How do you know the host? / What is your connection to the sponsor?
  2. How are you spending your time these days? (This is a good one, because it doesn’t put someone on the spot if they are between jobs, ill, et cetera.)
  3. Do you have any plans for the upcoming weekend/holiday?
  4. Any favorite podcasts or social accounts?

These are tried and true and should get you through a good 10 minutes or more of a 1:1 conversation – more if you are in a group. Remember to keep the phrasing of the questions open ended, so that you don’t get a one word, dead end answer.

Last, but not least, remember your manners. Hold doors, use table manners, don’t interrupt, and be sure to thank your host or the person who brought you to the event. No one wants to be that “rude person.”

A little thought and preparation going into an event can make the entire experience much more relaxing, and even enjoyable. Plus, you never know when you are going to make that next great connection.

 

 

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Social Media Doesn’t Need to be Complicated to be Effective


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Social media can be for all businesses – whether they have dabbled before or are just thinking about establishing a presence. Many worry their following isn’t large enough or they aren’t posting frequently enough to garner effective results. This is not necessarily the case. With a narrow, yet consistent, approach businesses can see significant results.

One of our clients, a franchised beauty service company, focuses on two social platforms: Facebook and Instagram. Choosing two channels as opposed to several allows them to be more focused with their resources and deeply analyze their audiences, leveraging our social insights platform. Some questions we have helped them answer are:

  • When are your followers most active?
  • Is there a specific type of person that follows you?
  • What motivates your client (promotion, availability, seasonality, engagement)?

With a sense of their audience, we can then cater content that will be most appealing to the target audience, driving consistent engagement and performance on the bottom line. For example, if there is a specific day and time their audience is active, then consistently post at that time. Also, we help them keep the content fresh, as followers like to see a diverse array of posts on their feeds.

Many clients ask about promoted social posts. Our advice is always to be targeted and efficient. There should be no wasted resources with the ability to target so effectively. This client promotes on Facebook and Instagram, which not only raises brand awareness, but drives nearly immediate conversion. We frequently use targeted promoted posts, and within hours of the boosted post being live, their appointment books fill!

In order for a boosted post to be successful, it’s crucial that you have a focused objective. Ask yourself: What is my business trying to accomplish?

  • Promoting new content
  • Boosting website traffic
  • Simply trying to increase brand awareness

Once you have a clear objective, it’s time to choose your targeted audience. Facebook offers the following targeting options: location, age, gender, and interests. Most businesses find it better to target a specific demographic in order to get the best results – it is not necessary to use every targeting option. Also, test a few different approaches to optimize what works best.

When used correctly, social media is one of the most effective and cost-effective ways of gaining brand awareness and traffic. As long as you have a focused objective and a clear picture of your target audience, you will see results!

-Bailey Rayment