Becoming a “trend spotter” can happen by coincidence or from experience.
In this article, I’m going to be sharing my insights from Leading Light Media. We manage Facebook advertising companies for small businesses all the way through to large corporations. The great news is that these trends are from our bird’s eye view over the last 12 months.
We know what’s working on social media and what’s not.
So let’s get started with the 5 biggest trends facing social media today.
1) Social Media Illusion
Most businesses fall into the social media illusion.
The big problem is that people believe that simply creating a Facebook fan page or a Twitter profile is something productive. They’ll send out a few posts, gain a few likes and hope that all of a sudden customers are going to come banging down the door.
Facebook encouraged this illusion by inviting people and their brands to create fan pages.
However, Facebook soon suddenly changed the rules and if you want to reach your subscribers you have to PAY for it.
As a result of this, building up likes and posting content is no longer an economical or effective method of marketing on Facebook.
There is a huge difference between Facebook as a social platform and an advertising platform.
If you think you can post on your fan page every day and have people hanging onto your every word, you will be very disappointed.
There’s nothing wrong with creating a fan page and building an audience, however, it doesn’t necessarily contribute to building your business.
For that reason, most businesses don’t get any real results and therefore don’t use social media marketing.
Businesses that are quite successful could do 1000x better if they applied an advertising approach to their social media.
2) The Death Of Organic Reach
Simply put, organic reach is the amount of people who see your posts, updates and tweets that are not paid for.
This will be a bit more biased towards Facebook organic social media but haven’t you noticed how low your reach is on social media?
I mean you put up a Facebook post up and hardly anyone sees it.
You send out tweets and get no traction.
You’re putting the effort in but you’re not really reaching anyone or getting any results.
Don’t worry, you’re not alone.
Most business owners and marketing professionals find social media and online advertising confusing and frustrating.
That’s the big problem because as you know, the future of your business depends on social media and your ability to get customers from it.
Don’t get frustrated because organic social media is dead.
Yes, it’s good to have a few posts that go out to stay relevant but don’t put your hopes on getting great results.
The way that you get great results from social media is by using the advertising platforms available. Here at Leading Light Media, we specialise in Facebook advertising and it’s the platform we specialise in.
Facebook is a platform you must be advertising on to really see success with Facebook marketing.
3) The Mobile Revolution
The rise of mobile users has gone through the roof.
This means that people’s attention will be dominated with whatever call, text, message, tweet or email pings in.
It also means that people are looking at your adverts, emails, social updates on a MOBILE!
I think the biggest screen currently is 7 inches but the average must be around 5 inches.
So what does this mean for you?
Firstly, your landing pages and websites MUST be optimised for mobile. If they are not optimised for mobile you’ll be wasting any social media traffic you send to them. Seriously, you might as well not bother!
Secondly, if you’re running advertising campaigns on Facebook you need a completely different approach to mobile.
Your adverts are displayed differently, so we have to optimise the image, video, headline, text, all for mobile. We have a completely separate ad set for mobile ads.
Going into this kind of detail is what will make the difference between successful campaigns and campaigns that burn a hole in your pocket.
When you think mobile, think a completely different strategy to desktop.
4) Paid Social Advertising Continues To Reign – It’s Now Or Never!
There’s no doubt social media algorithms make it harder for businesses to promote organic content. With the introduction of the Instagram algorithm, nearly every major social network uses some sort of content preferential treatment.
The majority of these algorithms have one simple purpose to make its users happy with the content they see in their feeds. This means they are going to display friends and family, not business updates. You’re not going to win and this is making it difficult for businesses to be seen if they strictly publish organic social content.
Social media spend is rapidly on the rise with over $41 Billion being spent in 2017, oh how you’d love to be Facebook!
You must become an advertiser on social media, don’t fall into the social media illusion trap!
5) Lack Of A Marketing Funnel
The fact is, social media as a platform is utterly pointless unless you have a way to turn people into customers.
The way that we do that is through a marketing funnel.
A marketing funnel has three core level’s awareness, consideration and conversion.
These three levels are designed to take consumers or purchasers through to influence them to make a buying decision.
Each stage has a lot of different components and your job as a businesses owner and marketer is to know exactly how to move them through the funnel.
One big trend we see a lot is the lack of a structured marketing funnel.
The whole success of your online marketing and social media will come down to your ability to turn a stranger into a customer, yet so many businesses ignore it.
They still believe you have to send someone to your website contact page and they’ll be so impressed by a contact form that they’ll want to do business with you.
It doesn’t work like that anymore and you have to be smart.
The entry point to a marketing funnel should always be low entry and we advise using some kind of lead magnet. A lead magnet is a “bait” that you can attract people in with. In return for the lead magnet, we ask for an email address or contact details. The reason we do this is to build up an email list that we can follow-up and market to, bringing people further into the marketing funnel.
I could write a book on sales funnels and I don’t have room in this post to include a lot of information. The big takeaway is to make sure you have a system that turns social media traffic into customers.
This year has been exciting and we’ve been seeing some incredible results from paid social, especially Facebook advertising.
Make sure you evaluate your current social media marketing plan and take the actions needed to make it extremely possible.
Because, as you know, the future of your business depends on social media and your ability to get customers from it.
Would you like to speak to an expert about transforming your social media marketing?
We have a limited number of free strategy sessions worth £297 available for people who are serious about their social media marketing.
If you’d like to book one, please click here.