The latest trends in Digital Marketing show that social media platforms are quickly evolving into online marketplaces. Moving beyond the realms of creativity and connectivity, they offer a vast customer base for businesses. While there are multiple social media platforms across the internet, each platform comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Moreover, there are differences in content types, formats, and audiences.

For businesses seeking to get started with social media, choosing a single platform that best aligns with your product or service is a great first step. Then comes the formulation of an effective social media strategy.

Let’s explore some social media trends that businesses can leverage in 2021.

From e-Commerce to Social Commerce

According to experts, more than 50% of sales across 14 major sectors are happening through social media. In a way, there is a thin line between e-commerce platforms such as Shopify or Woocommerce integrated with WordPress and social media. Platforms such as Facebook and Instagram are offering separate business profiles for dedicated campaigns and direct sales.* The integration of payment gateways and fintech applications are making the process much easier.

*Instagram is owned by Facebook and Facebook Ads Manager must be used to advertise on Instagram.

Create Follower Communities:

A loyal social media follower group is just as powerful as a team of sales executives. Proper interactions and responsiveness are crucial in creating a robust customer retention management system within the platform.

Make your followers brand ambassadors of your product/service. The user-generated content such as testimonials, feedback, etc. can help more than you think in your business expansion. Consumers increasingly respond to relatable stories over rote advertising copy.

Influencers and Collaborations

The power of social media lies in its multiplier effect. Likes, shares, and comments from your network can reach any corner of the world, especially if your content goes viral. At times it requires a push from someone with massive social media influence to spread the word. Influencer marketing is a buzz word in the digital marketing arena. One way to promote your business is by paid collaborations and reviews with influencers across different social media channels. There are even influencer marketplaces where you can read about what industries they promote and how successful they are.

Effective Analytics

Real-time analytics is one of the best rewards of digital marketing. The fact that you are a small business should not drive you away from dealing with analytics. All platforms offer graphical analytics tools that even someone without a statistics background can understand.. Leveraging this data allows you to optimize your strategy and content over time. This will make your marketing campaigns successful by reaching out to a larger, more targeted customer base.

Leveraging New Platforms

With the reduction in average internet bandwidth cost, video platforms are becoming increasingly popular. In content marketing, short videos are grabbing users’ attention faster than other mediums. This clearly explains the rising popularity of mediums such as TikTok. Many companies are already leveraging TikTok influencers for promoting business through short-format videos. These videos can cover product descriptions, reviews, or creative ad campaigns.

Small businesses often struggle with low marketing budgets. However, the new social media trends suggest that it can be a very effective low-cost marketing alternative. As you get familiar and grow success with your first platform, you can add others that are relevant for your business.
No matter what platform(s) you choose, remember to optimize your profile:

  • Use crisp, clear, well-lit photos.
  • Spell check your written content and be sure you are using terminology your intended audience can understand.
  • Avoid a “ghost town” by posting frequently.
  • Respond to comments, likes, etc. quickly to let your audience know you care.

Now it’s time to choose your first platform. Here are some choices:

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • TikTok
  • Alignable
  • YouTube
  • Tumblr
  • Reddit
  • Snapchat
  • Pinterest

Check back next month and we’ll talk about each of these networks’ primary audience and businesses that may benefit from a presence.