The New Year has come, and we are now moving full-steam ahead through 2014. Lots of things will change over the coming year, social networks included. While everyone else is preparing to take on their new year’s resolution, marketers should be preparing for the year ahead. Part of the preparation involves adapting existing social media strategies so that they remain efficient well into the year.
Here are some social media trends that should help over the coming year.
Facebook Will Focus on Video Ads
Facebook is already pretty effective with photo and image based ads. They’ve recently started testing video ads across the site, so the current impact is minor. Throughout the year, however, expect a much wider rollout of video ads on the network. Facebook will likely deliver video advertisements right in the middle of newsfeeds just like they’ve done with promoted posts and image adverts.
Also, there’s a lot happening right now with younger audiences and the platform. They’re starting to move on to greener pastures or, more specifically, they’re migrating to media-centric networks like Snapchat, Instagram and others, if they haven’t already. Whether this is going to be a huge problem for Facebook remains to be seen, but expect to see an increased focus on younger audiences over the year. It’s safe to say that the network will probably undergo a few changes here and there, as new features are added that appeal to younger generations.
Twitter is Going Visual
Twitter has always been media friendly, because there isn’t really say much you can say in 140 characters when posting advertisements. That being said, the network is shifting focus over to photos and images. In general, Twitter has become more visual over the past few months. Users now see photos and Vine videos right in their feed. This eliminates the need to expand the content and allows users to see media even while they’re browsing through their feeds quickly.
Resourceful marketers can take advantage of the native media content to increase conversions and engagement ratings. Since Twitter now has to pander to stockholders and keep them happy, expect the trend to continue. Prepare your strategies now by incorporating visual elements wherever possible. If you haven’t already, learn how to use Vine videos and images effectively on the platform. It doesn’t matter if you’re a large company or a business that sells faux stone columns, you need to be on Twitter.
Google+ is Necessary for SEO
It’s no secret that Google+ is necessary for SEO. Make sure you have an active Google+ account and that you’re using it consistently throughout the year. You don’t necessarily have to utilize Google+ as heavily as you do Facebook, Twitter or the other big names, but you should still definitely be using it. Couple that with the fact that Google+ popularity is still growing, and it’s clear that you need to get in on the action while you can.
Instagram Will be Optimized for Ads
Ads are relatively new for the platform, but that doesn’t mean they won’t be effective. Instagram will be optimized for image and video based ads in 2014, and many changes will be made which reflect that. The most important thing is that the ads need to be implemented properly so as not to alienate existing users, especially since the network has been devoid of ads for so long.
We can expect lots of interesting and innovate things to come from Instagram. Find ways to incorporate the platform into your social media strategy. In addition, micro video is already on the verge of an extreme boost, which means platforms like Vine, Instagram and others are going to be very popular this year.
2014 Will be a Great Year for Social Marketing
One thing is certain, 2014 is poised to be a great year all around for marketers. Pay attention to the growing trends and adapt to the coming changes, and there’s no way you won’t experience some success.