Top 10 Social Media Trends To Watch For In 2018
It goes without saying that Social Media is now an essential part of our everyday lives. In fact, it can be argued that Social Media is the bedrock of the internet. While there are 3.58 billion internet users in the world as at 2017, there are 2.46 billion Social Media users in the same year, representing about 68% of all internet users. We can simply infer that if you are looking for people on the internet, the best place to find them is on Social Media. This is why trends occurring on Social Media are very important to businesses, users and everyone in between. There have been several trends in the past, but this article focuses on the trends to watch out for in the not-so-distant future – 2018.
1. Augmented Reality:
The best thing about augmented reality is that it blurs the line between a created world and reality. Bigger brands are beginning to incorporate AR into their devices in order to stay ahead of the pack. Apple recently did so in the new iOS 11 and the iPhone X. Everyone is always looking for quick and convenient stuff, so brands can easily bring AR ads to users, providing a near-reality experience of products, especially on Snapchat and Instagram. This will lead to better decision making on the part of the customers, increase loyalty, as well as return potential return costs on the part of the companies.
2. Instagram Stories:
With over 300 million active users daily as at October 2017, up from 200 million in April 2017, the number of active daily users is expected to rise even further in 2018. According to Fortune, 50% of businesses uploaded an Instagram story in July 2017, and one in five organic stories led to a direct message from an Instagram follower.
3. Influencer Marketing:
This is one trend that has continuously been important for quite some time. We all know that hearing about a product or information from someone people look up to makes them trust such products or information. In fact, 71% of consumers are more inclined to making a purchase off a Social Media reference.
4. Generation Z:
The Generation Z is used to describe people born anytime between 1995 and 2012. There are about 60 million of them, and this group of people have grown to become a unique market segment. About 95% of Generation Z-ers use YouTube, and over 70% use Instagram and Snapchat daily. Many of them do not watch TV regularly and prefer VOD services like Netflix. Generation Z-ers are said to even trust Social Media influencers more than regular celebrities.
5. Messaging with AI:
Chatbots and messaging with AI have risen in popularity in recent times. According to Hubspot, 48% of consumers prefer to communicate with brands via chatbots than any other means. Most importantly, 40% of customers do not care whether or not a chatbot or human is the one replying the chat.
6. Live Streaming:
Video Streaming accounts for over 66% of all internet traffic, and this is expected to rise through the years to about 82% in 2020. 2018 will be a good time to tap into live streaming trends and position yourself for the coming years.
7. Rebirth of Twitter:
Twitter has been losing active users this year, and we really need to consider this. Twitter lost 2 million users in the U.S. alone in the second quarter of 2017. However, with the recent increase in number of Twitter characters from 140 to 280, it remains to be seen whether or not there will be any changes.
8. Digital Hangouts:
Digital Hangouts have grown in range of uses, from viewing parties to innovative collaborative B2B marketing campaigns. Come 2018, there are bound to be several pioneering uses of Digital Hangouts.
9. Facebook Spaces:
This is a Virtual Reality app that allows you hang out with friends as if you are in the same room. It creates a fun interactive environment that allows you let people into your virtual world. Brands can capitalize on Facebook Spaces by creating such environments to showcase their products.
10. Increased Policies:
Several watchdogs, governments and agencies are beginning to regulate the use of Social Media services. This means that, in 2018, there should be caution on what is posted and how users’ data are used on Social Media.
In 2018, there is expected to be an increase in the number of Social Media users to 2.62 billion people.The trends outlined here will help you know your target audience characteristics, as well as what they are interested in. Understanding the trends explained in this post is just one part of the story, as you need to act to capitalize on them in order to profit from Social Media in 2018. The numbers are there, go forth and conquer.