Five Social Media Trends to Watch: Facebook Spaces, Chatbots, Gen Z, and More

In the past year, we have witnessed how significant social media is in our lives as well as in the news. The president of the United States communicated his political beliefs in 140 characters or fewer. Facebook is taking over in the advertising space and has stripped down Snapchat’s market share by adding stories to Instagram. With September coming to a close, we are looking forward to what social media trends will emerge as 2018 approaches. To help, Brand Iron has put together 5 social media trends to watch while you prepare for the upcoming year.

1. Facebook… So Much To Watch Out For

Facebook has transformed social media time and time again. This year we saw how live streaming has added a new element to social media. Now Facebook is working on a project called Spaces that is taking that concept to a whole new level. Spaces allows you to connect with your social network through virtual reality. Available via the Oculus Rift, you will soon be able to control a virtual representation of yourself, interacting and sharing memories with your friends in a new space. Check out this video for more info!

2. Content Personalization

Everyday we are bombarded by content. People have acquired skills to screen and filter the content to narrow down the specific pieces that will bring them value. Technology and automation has made it possible to create personalized content based on what a person has clicked on in the past. By setting rules and triggers, you can automate your marketing to respond with content that actually matters to your audience. Personalization will differentiate your brand and message from the sea of content.

3. Chatbots Will Become More and More Common

Artificial intelligence in the form of chatbots can communicate through voice or text. Chatbots are guided and powered by a set of rules to create conversation structure that is programmed into their code. They’re convincing enough to fool all but the most astute observers and can offer a personal-feeling experience to numerous people. They’re starting to make their appearance in the realm of customer support with striking advantages. To start, they make support accessible to more people at once while shortening wait times. They also provide consistent answers about company services to a host of frequently asked questions.

4. Focus on Generation Z

Move over Millennials, Generation Z is taking the stage. They’re becoming more influential as the importance of social media swells. Generation Z grew up fully immersed with social media and are quite savvy. Their interests and aptitude are driving the social media market. Brands who lack a presence on platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook may be missing out on a huge group of potential leads.

5. Keep an eye on Twitter

Recently Twitter has fallen behind other platforms and has been all over the news for its lackluster ability to keep up with trends. They have even lost ground to Amazon who now has the ability to stream NFL games. We believe that in the next year Twitter will be making some big changes to reinvigorate their popularity.

Social media platforms allow you to track your engagement with your audience. This means a better understanding of what resonates with them and the opportunity to improve your methods moving forward. Strengthening your company’s social media strategy will be important for your brand moving forward into the upcoming year. Brand Iron can help prepare your brand and strategy for these upcoming trends. Call 303-534-1901 or visit brandiron.net for more information.

How Startups can Leverage the Power of Social Media

Harness the power of social media. A guide for startup companies.

September is ‘the month of startups,’ and we’d like to kick it off by highlighting how new businesses can maximize the potential of social media. By now, it is evident that having a social media strategy is no longer optional for businesses. A plethora of research supports a strong social media presence to boost your brand’s awareness, engagement, lead generations, and number of closed prospects.

Social media is a great and free resource for startups working on tight budgets. With built-in analytics tools, social media platforms generate up-to-date tracking and insights that show how effectively your campaigns are reaching your target audience. Despite its importance, many startup companies do not know how to best utilize the power of social media to strengthen brand identity.

Plan and Strategize

Before you start haphazardly posting on social media, you must create a strategy that has clear, measurable goals and objectives. Just as you needed to develop a strategy for launching your business, the same goes for your social media. How do you want to portray your brand image? What is brand’s look and feel? Do you want to be known as a corporate structured company, or a laid back, relaxed, and personable company? You must answer these types of questions before you start building your social media strategy. It is important that there is a consistent theme and message across all platforms so that your company appears well-established and united.

Next, you must determine which social media platform(s) best fits for your company based on your target audience and strategy. Some businesses may have a strong presence on all platforms, while other businesses may benefit by focusing all their efforts on one or two. Figuring out the right balance may take some time, and is unique for each business.

Facebook: It is no surprise that Facebook is the largest social media platform with the most active users and widest reach. Facebook allows you to specifically target your audience with content, while also allowing you to reach a wide number of prospects. Just about every business has a Facebook page; if you don’t already have one for your business, it’s time you set one up–it’s super easy!

LinkedIn: This is the largest professional social media platform. The content that you share on this platform should be clean and professional. It is a great tool for networking.

Twitter: Don’t overlook Twitter when you are starting your business! It is a great platform to retweet industry leaders and show knowledge on your specific industry. Twitter allows you to gaining brand awareness through content distribution.

Instagram: Instagram is a great platform to showcase your company culture, new product packaging, community events, etc. Instagram is fun and super visual, so keep the content light and current.

YouTube: People enjoy watching videos and it drives a high level of interest and engagement among target audiences. It is a great place to explain specific processes, increase brand awareness, and showcase technology. Once you have invested time and resources to creating a video, you can share the content across multiple channels.

Determine Goals and Objectives

Your social media strategy must build around specific company goals and objectives. These benchmarks must be measurable and achievable. Here are some goals your startup company may focus on:

Lead Generation: The way you are going to close on leads and increase revenue is to drive traffic to your website. With a greater number of leads landing on your site, there is a greater opportunity to close on these leads. A specific call to action is required to prompt leads to visit your site.

Brand Awareness: Due to the nature of being a startup, brand awareness is inevitably one of your main goals. Increasing your reach and getting your brand image out in front of your audience is an added benefit of implementing your social media strategy.

Content Distribution: We hear all the time how difficult it is for new businesses to create their own engaging content due to limited time and resources. Repurposing and sharing existing content can be a great way to cut down on the time necessary to create original content.

Go out and start sharing!

Now that the basics of social media are mapped out, it’s time to implement your strategy. Remember that social media is SOCIAL, so communicate and respond to your audience; it should be a give and take relationship. Build a tribe and following around your brand. Loyal followers will bring more value to your company than high numbers of uncommitted followers. You want to nurture and increase this following as your business continues to grow.

 

If you have any questions about how social media can play an integral part in your business strategy, check us out at Brandiron.net or call 303-345-1901 to see how we can help!