New year, new social media update – nothing like kicking off 2018 with something new to digest. Thankfully for you, the P4 digital team constantly have their finger on the pulse, ready to adapt to the ever-changing world of digital marketing.
To ensure you start the year on the right foot (and don’t keep living in 2017) we have compiled a need-to-know guide on all things social media for 2018 to help you transition with ease.
If you haven’t been living under a rock this year, you would have heard of Mark Zuckerberg’s latest announcement on Facebook’s algorithm change – if you have no idea what we are talking about you can read his official statement here. Essentially, the big news is that Facebook will now begin promoting personal content over public content, including news and other posts from publishers or businesses. Facebook has explained that this change has been made in their endeavour to get back to basics on why the platform was originally built – to bring people closer together by connecting them with meaningful posts from their friends and family.
What does this mean for you?
As with anything on social media, particularly Facebook, no one is going to really know the implications of these changes until they have been fully put into action and brands have had a chance to test, learn and analyse the results. However, we can assist you with reducing the impacts of these changes to work in your favour.
Here are our top tips for winning at Facebook in 2018:
Create engaging content – comments, shares and likes are more important than ever!
Video is king – video will continue to appear first in your news feed, especially live videos as they receive on average, six times more interactions than regular videos.
Encourage your audience to ‘follow’ your page – this will prioritise your content in their news feed.
Incorporate influencer engagement into your digital strategy – because they are not a brand or publisher their content won’t be affected.
Invest in Facebook Advertising – social media is no longer free and you will need to pay for results.
Instagram is becoming increasingly business-orientated with over 25 million businesses now embracing the platform, up from just eight million since March 2017! This seems to be a trend that is not slowing down in 2018, however, among some recent alterations to Instagram’s user experience, these business accounts have some new (and big) changes to work with.
First it was the switch from a chronological feed to an algorithmic one, then there was the introduction of ads, and now this. Instagram’s latest update includes posts from accounts you don’t follow directly in your feed, AND you can follow hashtags – say what?!
One recent shift in the photo sharing service has been the addition of posts “Recommended for You”. Differing from sponsored content which brands pay Instagram to place in your feed (like an ad), Instagram now shows you posts based on the activity of the accounts you follow. Another huge change is Instagram’s move towards becoming more of an interest network with the ability for users to follow #hashtags. Although Instagram has always been a social network in which users follow their friends, influencers and brands, they can now follow the top posts and stories about a chosen topic (via a hashtag) on their home page, as opposed to finding this content in the ‘explore’ tab.
What does this mean for you?
Both additions will certainly expand the platform and allow brands the opportunity for the content they create to reach a potentially wider audience, and thus, gain higher brand exposure. If brands are able to tap into their audiences’ interests correctly, the hashtags used in their own content could potentially be followed by a wider community. These friends may likely be of a similar demographic or share the same interests, meaning brands could be increasing their desired audience through the ‘Recommended For You’ tab, especially if they have a high level of engagement on their account.
Towards the end of 2017, LinkedIn was also making some seriously big changes. The business platform added some major new features including video for personal accounts, and a refreshed messaging platform, resulting in LinkedIn reaching over 500 million monthly users. Congrats LinkedIn!
Following their launch of native video content in 2017, LinkedIn will now offer businesses the option of using native videos in sponsored ads. For now, these ads will only be served on mobile devices but don’t let that stop you as over 81% of social media users consume media on their mobile phones.