It’s been a turbulent year for social media marketing due to the Covid-19 pandemic causing disruption and chaos for most individuals and businesses globally. Some marketers might be unsure of what the marketing landscape will be like in 2021.
One thing we do know is some of today’s social media trends will likely be around next year – at least for the first half of it. Returning to ‘normal’ life will undoubtedly take a long time for most people.
But, marketers should still curate data-driven campaigns for 2021 just as they’ve done for this year and previous years. The big question on your mind is, what will be the top social media trends for 2021? Here’s a round-up of the ones you need to know:
The Impact Of Social Awareness
It’s essential to recognise that today’s consumers are very socially-aware. Individuals born in the 1990s and beyond will regularly engage in conversations with others about today’s social issues. Such topics include mental health, climate change, and equality.
Did you know that those individuals – “Millenials” and “Generation Z” – represent a vast proportion of the total social media users? For instance, one source in the United States claims that a whopping 90% of millennials in the country actively use social media each day.
They are generations of people that use platforms like Facebook and Twitter to converse with others online about various social issues. With that in mind, your brand’s digital market strategies need to take social awareness into account.
The last thing you should do is pay lip-service to your audience. What your brand needs to do is build a credible reputation on social media by backing up the things you say and do. Social awareness isn’t something that will go away; if anything, it’s increasing each day.
If your brand is attempting to become one with a global purpose, it should identify the issues that are most relevant to target audiences in each region.
Can’t keep on top of your social media plan?
Breaking Down Fake News
If the 2020 U.S. election is anything to go by, we’ll see more measures getting taken by social media networks to combat digital disinformation or “fake news.” The size of the problem became prevalent both in the U.S. election and, of course, the COVID-19 crisis.
In 2021, you can expect to see social networks taking more responsibility for the content that gets published on them by their users. It’s already started with posts getting labelled as inaccurate or misleading, especially ones that relate to leading social issues.
Your brand needs to adopt a culture of transparency when it posts on social media. Doing so will ensure that disinformation does not get spread and that such fake news doesn’t get attributed to you as the source.
Another thing your business or organisation must do is actively monitor brand mentions online. You’ll find it easier to crack down on the spread of misinformation on the Web before anything turns into a public relations nightmare.
Forging Relationships With Personalised Marketing
There was once a time where all marketers needed to do is convey messages targeted to audiences as a whole. The social marketing landscape has evolved, and brands should now be focusing on conversational marketing.
Today’s consumers expect to receive tailored messages that best meet their needs. What that means for your brand is you’ll have to put more effort into creating relationships with your audience.
In times of crisis, such as with the COVID-19 pandemic, buying products and services aren’t a priority for consumers. Instead, your target audience prefers to do business with brands that genuinely engage with them and build a relationship.
When you create a unique customer experience, consumers are more likely to take notice of what you’ve got to offer and subsequently spend their money with you. Keeping that in mind, how can you create such an experience through social media?
One example you should embrace in 2021 is the use of Facebook Messenger chatbots. They are a form of AI (artificial intelligence) that can help your audience have a more personalised customer experience.
Your chatbot can help consumers find the products they need, get answers to frequently asked questions, and even place orders all within Messenger.
Memory Lane Marketing
While it’s crucial to tailor your social media marketing campaigns for today and tomorrow, it’s equally vital to consider nostalgia marketing. Why is nostalgia marketing going to be an upcoming social media marketing trend for 2021, you might ask yourself?
The answer is simple: with the events that have unfolded in 2020, most people will welcome a boost to current emotions. They can receive that boost by getting reminded about happier times like in 2018 when COVID-19 wasn’t a global crisis that tore everyone’s world apart.
Nostalgia marketing is a brilliant way of tying powerful positive emotions to your business or organisation’s brand. It also helps consumers find temporary relief from the chaos and despair of today’s social issues.
There’s no denying that 2020 is a year filled with economic, political, and medical uncertainty for many people. 2021 gives everyone hopes for a more positive future, and you can use nostalgia marketing to coincide with those aspirations.
Social Media Diversification
One final social media marketing trend to take on board with your campaigns for 2021 is diversification. Social platforms such as TikTok have shaken up the social media world and offer new approaches to social engagement.
TikTok is something of a hybrid of YouTube and Vine (remember them?) where both amateur and celebrity video creators alike can share all sorts of videos with global audiences. TikTok is a social media platform popular with both Generation Z and Generation Alpha audiences.
Even Instagram has jumped on the short video bandwagon, rolling out the “Reels” feature to its users and offering them the ability to create 15-second videos.
2021 will be the year that social media diversification becomes an essential trend for brand marketers to embrace. All major social channels must get utilised by brand marketers for maximum impact with their audiences.