2017 Social Media Trends Summary and 2018 Predictions

social media summary

Social Media is always changing… 

The CarmellaCrew got together last week to cover off the changes we’ve seen in social media in 2017 and we’ve got some strong predictions for 2018. As professionals in the social media marketing industry, it is important to stay up-to-date with all the new technology and trends in the social media world. Here is our CarmellaCrew Social Media summary of 2017 and 2018 predictions. 

2017 brought us chat bots, Instagram stories, longer Twitter posts and increased depth in analytics tools. 2017 also taught us that Google doesn’t crawl social pages and can’t factor in the size of your following or the quality of those leads. We dug a little deeper and learned that maybe the number of your followers doesn’t matter to the Google algorithm. But still, the content on social pages is indexed. Your social pages matter to Google.

While social shares may or may not affect a webpage’s position in search listings, your social profiles definitely influence the content of your search results. In fact, social media
profiles are often amongst the top results in search listings for brand names.
 
social media summary 

What does this mean? 

Does this mean that the time has come to move away from followers as a success metric on social media? This doesn’t mean that followers are no longer important – what it does mean is that there are more effective ways to reach your audiences than simply sharing organic content through your social pages. You must pull your newsfeed followers in with great content, video, images, contests and galleries and you also must serve this content to potential followers and clients with ads.
 
 No, we are not suggesting that you forget about your loyal followers that have flocked to your social channels over years of growth, but it could help to expand your reach past your followers through paid advertising.
 
 It’s always hard to make a prediction, so I’ll just leave this here. The number one item that is on the rise and will continue to play a factor into whether a post has traction or not, is the humanization of the business through social media. Showing that you care and exposing the real humans behind the business. The posts that will continue to perform the best are the ones that are personal and come from within the heart of the business. This further demonstrates the imminent need for the business owner to be directly related in the social media strategy and plan. This does not mean that the business owner is creating, scheduling and posting all the companies content,  but perhaps the owner provides three to four posts per month that show company direction, care and the humanization of the business.
 
 Despite all this change, there are several things we think you can do in 2018 to have a great social media presence.

2018To do in Social Media in 2018:

 
 1. Social Media Plan

With the amount of social media platforms out there, and the increasing uses and functions available on each of them, a social media plan is essential for any business in 2018. 

 A social media plan does exactly what it says on the tin; lays out all aspects of your digital actions into a compelling, tactical, executable process with key performance indicators (KPI’s). Consistent social media posting and interaction provides an avenue for customer service and will help put your business on the tip of everyone’s tongue. 

Once you’ve identified the right stakeholders and networks involved in your business, you can create engaging content for your social channels. This content—whether brand new information about your business or product, 3rd party content relevant to your audience, or simple questions for your customers—should all be a part up into your business objectives. A social media plan helps you track what you’re saying, how you’re saying it and whether it’s being responded to.

 2. Analytics

Using industry-leading analytics tools, it’s possible to track every engagement down to the IP address, impression, conversion and sale. If you want to know your ROI (return on investment) for every stage you can dig in and find it. Dig into your Google analytics or Google Search Console and use this information to build better audiences in Facebook. Even Instagram has it’s own built-in analytics system for businesses.
 

 3. Learn how to make automation work for you.

There are some definite time saving tools out there, figure out how to use them and use them well. From Chat Bots to scheduling tools, you can find a way to automate just about anything.

 4. Pay attention to mobile.

Your Facebook image and logo resize differently on mobile, make sure they look great. A business is judged by online reputation so pay attention to the details. If your content is hardly readable via mobile, people will just skip over it. 38 Mobile Marketing Statistics to Help You Plan for 2018
 

 5. Be helpful.

Produce content that solves a problem and is helping your consumer. Become a thought leader in your industry. A recent Google blog discussed how shoppers are increasingly looking for ideas, not just products. If you give people ideas and ways to solve a problem, you are bound to have favourable reactions from them, and build better relationships.

6. Get on Instagram!

Social media is demanding, and we know that it’s hard to keep up with all the developments on every social media channel, with what’s hot, and what’s not. But this is the world we live in, ignore it at your peril! Instagram itself is a very demanding social media channel aimed at visual creativity. Instagram allows users to post images and edit them with filters for different effects, as well as caption them with creative content and hashtags. Instagram allows you to follow individuals who’s content you admire, and has a similar feedback mechanism to Twitter, (using @ to tag individual users) which means you can engage personally with your followers. You can also publish temporary content in the form of “stories”, in a feature similar to Snapchat. Once you get into the habit of making an effort to post on Instagram, it does get fun, and you will increase your following. Just remember to stay on brand, keep a solid consistency of 5-6 posts per week, and give your audience a sneak peak into the life of your business. Look into programs such as Grum or Planoly to help you schedule/post content from your desktop AND see all your hard work pay off by checking out the Instagram analytics right there in your profile, on your smartphone! 

 
Instagram is an incredibly popular and rewarding social media platform. We highly recommend building a business profile on it. 
 

 7. Create some video content
 
 With over 8 billion daily video views on Facebook and over 1 billion Youtube users, digital marketing businesses are recommending business use video in their social media plan, and at Carmella we think so too! At our Carmella Crew clinic 102: Do MORE with Video in Social Media, ourselves and Steve Dunn from Deep Blue Media discussed the importance of video in social media and how easy it is to incorporate. 

 
in October 2017 we discussed the importance of video in social media. We stressed you do not need to be a videographer to produce great content. Just put on your creativity hat, whip out that smartphone and capture some terrific content that your audience will love! Put yourself in your target audiences’ shoes – what would you want to see in a Facebook ad or a Instagram post? Information about an event? A quick “how to” video? Or even just a short story about some interesting aspect of your history. These are all easy to make, interesting and personable ways to connect with your clients through social media.
 
We hope you’ve enjoyed our brief discussion about Social Media trends for 2017, and some of our predictions for what businesses should be doing as part of their social media strategy for 2018. What are your predictions for the social media in the next year? Where do you see things heading? What would you like to be able to do on particular platforms? Let us know in the comments!
 
– The Carmella Crew. 
 
 
 
obrien

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