Recently, I attended Hootsuite's webinar highlighting five key social media trends for 2022 based on their annual survey of 18,000+ marketers, exhaustive research, and interviews with industry experts, customers, and partners. I saved my favorite key takeaways to share with you.
Backed by global data and expert insights, Hootsuite's 6th annual report on global social media trends is the ultimate guide for deciding which risks to take in 2022 and how to defy expectations and outperform competitors. I attended the webinar covering the report, and it was one of the most informative sessions I have sat through recently. As we've seen in the past two years, COVID has advanced social media as many people have relied on it to communicate and shop in a socially distant world. Without further ado, let's jump into my favorite takeaways.
Beginning with Trend 1, "The Brand Strategy Trend," Hootsuite discusses how brands utilize existing communities on the right platform to build their audience. They predict we will see more of this in 2022, and I agree. There's a Facebook Group or a TikTok trend for almost every hobby and interest.
"The most successful brands attach to pre-existing communities; instead of creating communities from the ground up, they engage with communities that form organically. They shift from top-down communication to meaningful conversations. They build relationships that evolve, grow and stand the test of time." -Sid Lee, The Belong Effect
Trend 2, "The Social Advertising Trend," discusses an increased focus on social advertising. More brands are advertising than ever before, which can create competition. The competitiveness of paid social encourages brands to create content that fits organically into the feed. Simply put, no one wants their experience on any social network interrupted by ads from brands that are as boring as they are self-serving. Therefore, throw out boring text ads and incorporate trending music and dancing.
Trend 3 "The ROI Trend" highlights the push toward marketers being able to see more of an ROI than ever before on social media. Company higher-ups are starting to look at social media as an essential part of the overall marketing strategy. With new data sources and an increased focus on analytics, paid and organic social can work together better than ever before with retargeting ads, building a community, and being a significant step in the buying journey.
Trend 4 "The Social Commerce Trend" covers the shift in online consumer shopping since the beginning of the pandemic two years ago. Suddenly, 84% of consumers are shopping over the internet, according to Shopify. "Social media has become the new boulevard, the high street, the avenue. It's your display window." Knowing this, the easier you make the purchase process, the more likely your customers will follow through with a conversion.
Trend 5, "The Customer Care Trend," points out how social media has become the front line of the COVID crisis. "Consumers, fed up with waiting on hold, have discovered that service delivered via social is immediate, convenient, and effective." In a Nielsen survey commissioned by Facebook, 64% said they now prefer to message rather than call a business. The pressure on companies to adapt to as many digital customer service channels as possible is sky high. It's not an easy transition for businesses, but this shift in focus can help make a difference in conversions and overall customer sentiment.
Read the full report here.