Although many critics insisted that social media was just a fad, it is obvious that not only social media has become an extension of business’s websites, they have also become central to business’s marketing strategies. In fact, people now expect brands and businesses to be on social media, especially on Facebook and Twitter.
However, social media constantly changes, with more social networks being introduced every year and new features and innovations being added to the existing ones. So, the name of the game for brands and businesses has become to always remain up-to-date with any changes and trends in social media in order to stay ahead and profit from them.
Since 2014 and to this day, the latest social media trends have been the introduction of new video and payment facilities features.
For example, in 2014, Facebook introduced video ads and in 2015, Facebook introduced a feature called “FB Live” which allows celebrities to live stream videos on Facebook. They also introduced in 2015 a friend-to-friend payment service where you can send money and receive money within Facebook.
Similar features have been introduced on Twitter. In 2014, Twitter launched “promoted videos” which allowed people to advertise their business on Twitter using video ads. And in 2015, Twitter acquired Periscope, an app that allows you to broadcast live videos.
Youtube also introduced an amazing new feature in 2015, which supports 360 degree videos. This means viewers can watch Youtube videos from any angle they choose.
Instagram which was quickly bought by Facebook soon after their launch, has also been an interesting social network to look out for as their new features can greatly benefit marketers. Although Instagram ads have been around for a while now, their ad formats have been evolving considerably. New targeting options and their new feedback mechanisms have made Instagram ads much more effective.
Pinterest also introduced some very handy new features. In 2014 Pinterest introduced their new search bar, called “guided search”. This feature allows users to discover things they didn’t even know existed, and also makes it much easier to filter your search by pins, boards or other pinners, making the whole process of finding what you’re looking for, much easier.
Interestingly, in 2015, Pinterest introduced “buyable pins”, a feature that allows users to buy the products displayed on Pinterest, directly from the social network, without having to leave Pinterest to complete their purchase.
Although LinkedIn rolls out changes on a regular basis, among their most interesting ones is its new search engine, named “Galene”. The new search engine which replaced the previous one called “Lucene”, allows users to find members across LinkedIn’s entire database with improved relevance thanks to their more sophisticated algorithms.
So when we look at the latest social media trends that have been happening on the networks mentioned above, we can clearly see a pattern. More and more video features, search features and payment facilities are being introduced.
The latest social media trends clearly indicate that not only is social media here to stay, it is becoming central to businesses’ marketing strategies.
Not only brands and businesses can now advertise their products and services using video and live broadcasts, they have complete control over their audience with improved targeting options.
A new social media trend which has been emerging is the ability to turn social media into an e-commerce site thanks to new payment facilities, allowing more sales to be generated in a much easier, and faster way without customers ever having to leave the network to complete a purchase. This social media trend is likely to grow in 2016.
An additional social media trend likely to appeal to marketers and business owners are the improved built-in search capabilities. Search engines within social networks now allow businesses and marketers to collect market intelligence for more accurate decision-making and more effective social media strategic planning.
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