Social Media Trends for 2017
Social media is here to stay, but it’s also constantly changing. Our social media experts at Red Technologies know social media and its crazy algorithms and below are what we think will be among the top social media trends in 2017.
Live Streaming Video
Live streaming video is everywhere, and there’s no reason you can make it work for your business. People want brands to be authentic. They’re tired of the polished and perfected content and don’t want to constantly see scripted material. Live video shows a real face in real time. Live video is hot, and if brands want to step up their game, they’ll take advantage of it. Your customers want to have an intimate experience with you. There is a risk to letting people behind the scenes of your business, but in most cases, it’s a risk worth taking.
The growing trend of Facebook Live has carried over to businesses. It’s easy to use and the latest algorithms give Facebook Live posts high priority and a LOT of reach. Remember, this is not to be scripted. That’s the point. People want to see the real you — unscripted.
We will certainly be seeing a rise in the use of chatbots in 2017. A chatbot is a program that simulates real conversation by way of a chat interface. We see this daily in things like text messaging on cell phones and by using Facebook Messenger.
Chatbots can work with written text or with voice recognition. This is common when calling a customer service line or using an online chat support feature, which allows you to ask a question before you speak to an actual customer service agent. Many times, basic, repeatable questions that would appear in a FAQ section can be answered by the chatbot. The customer service agent can later step in to handle more complex questions when needed, which allows the agents to focus on more demanding tasks. The chatbots interpret human speech or writer inquiries and decide which information is being sought. Chatbots can be a first point of contact with the customer and provide immediate and personalized support through their automation. Thanks to that, customer service agents will have more time to solve complex issues.
Selling on Social Media
The social scene is changing. Instead of just setting up a business profile and hoping to get noticed, businesses need to take an active role in putting their products in front of the buyers. Social networks are making that easier to do, while helping you boost your conversion rate.
Instagram has launched a “Shop Now” button that allows users to buy the item they’re seeing in the Instagram post. Similarly, Pinterest now offers “Buyable Pins,” which are pins that consumers can click on to go to a website and purchase the products. Both are an easy way to get people who like your pictures to buy your products.
Facebook has joined the game as well with its “Marketplace,” which has a style similar to Craigslist. The purpose of the Marketplace is to keep transactions local and is a great way to boost sales in your immediate geographic area. Users can log in to find items for sale in their immediate area. This works best for business that sell homemade goods locally or have a consignment shop or thrift store with changing inventory.
Paying for Placement
Social media algorithms are constantly changing and the reach of business posts is on the decline. Because of this, more and more businesses are turning to paid or boosted posts on popular social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. These paid ads often have very good results if you know how to use them.
If you choose to pay for an ad on social media, make sure to take advantage of targeting features to reach the appropriate audience, and rotate your ads regularly to give users a fresh look. Ads should also be designed with mobile in mind as more than 80% of social media users accessed social media on a mobile device in 2016.