Since its inception, social media has been in a constant state of transition due to changing user behavior and emerging technologies. A few years ago, no one would’ve anticipated the return of QR codes during the pandemic or the exponential growth of TikTok, yet here we are. Whether you’re an aspiring marketer or an avid social media manager, it helps to keep an eye on what’s happening in the digital space, so the emerging trends don’t surprise you.
As things stand, things are changing in the blink of an eye. Thus, we’ve put together a list of 5 social media-shaping trends to watch out for in 2023. This way, you can stay ahead of the curve and anticipate what’s happening behind the curtain and adapt to the changes faster. From a professional viewpoint, this can help you strategize your next move to boost organic engagement on social media.
So, let’s get started!
5 Social Media-Shaping Trends to Watch Out For in 2022
1. Livestream Commerce is Booming
For years, it’s been common knowledge that social media has played a tremendous role in influencing online shopping. From the discovery phase to checkout, it has drastically shrunk the purchase journey by converting prospects to buyers on social media platforms. According to ‘A.List daily’, 98% of consumers plan to make at least one purchase on social media in 2023.
This is mainly due to the rise of social commerce that boasts game-changing formats, including shoppable links, in-app checkouts, and branded videos/ads. However, live streaming is rapidly becoming the go-to format for marketers as it allows them to engage with potential buyers in real-time using live videos.
Many brands use this engagement to announce new products and exclusive offers as well as generate feedback for future campaigns. Although Livestream commerce isn’t new in countries like the US and China, the recent rise in online shopping following the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated its adoption, with companies using it to sell their products and services in just a few seconds.
2. The Zero and First-Party Data Surge
Following the rise of data compliance issues in the European Union and other countries, Apple decided to kill third-party cookies on its Safari browser after the iOS 14 update in 2021. Now, apps and sites will have to get consumer permission before tracking their activity. This massive change drastically affected advertisers and how they target prospectus buyers on the internet.
Unfortunately, social platforms targeting capabilities aren’t powerful enough to fix this issue. As a result, marketers and brands are opting for zero and first-party data collection strategies. Although building a database without tracking capabilities isn’t easy, it is the first step in ensuring compliance.
Plus, newer brands are using this as an opportunity to incentivize users to share their data for rewards, including discounts, pre-orders, exclusive access, and freebies. Once they have a solid CRM database set up, they can engage users with relevant campaigns and one-to-one communications to further enhance the relationship and sell more products.
Simply put, brands are offering their target audience on social media benefits or experiences money can’t buy in return for their information and engagement.
3. The Growth of AI-Generated Media
If you’ve heard of ‘deepfakes’, you probably have an idea of AI-generated or synthetic media. This is essentially media content either created or modified using artificial intelligence and machine learning.
Although this media type has received mainly negative reactions due to the abuse of deepfake videos, such as political hoaxes, fake news, and celebrity adult videos, the potential of this technology is undeniable for marketers. Brands can create high-quality marketing content cost-effectively using facial re-enactment, face-body swapping, and other AI tools.
Hence, it is one of the main social media-shaping trends to watch out for in 2022.
4. The Emergence of Mixed Reality
Since 2017, the world has seen exponential growth in digital technologies. Augmented Reality to Virtual Reality, Metaverse, blockchain, NFTs, etc. – all these concepts are trending worldwide and rapidly blending with our physical world.
Now, users can interact with virtual environments and visit digital stores and towns, tokenize and liquidate their real-world assets like real estate and art in impenetrable data units, and interact with millions of other users via their avatars in online communities. Imagine entering the world of Ready Player One.
In 2023, brands are rapidly getting on board the digital bandwagon and digitalizing their products and experiences to enable availability from anywhere. Facebook recently became Meta and launched ‘Workrooms’, an application that allows users to interact in the same virtual room using the Occulus VR headset.
5. The Rapid Rise of Online Communities
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, digital communities were on the rise, with thousands of forums and platforms of different niches connecting like-minded people in an open space. More communities are emerging every day, especially on popular platforms, such as Facebook, TikTok, Reddit, Twitch, and even WhatsApp groups.
For instance, Oh My Goal, a popular soccer site, has amassed over 40 million members on its forum. Similarly, Steam, the world’s largest gaming platform and forum, has over 120 million users worldwide. The most interesting aspect of these communities is that consumers are the biggest content creators.
They post images, videos, memes, and reviews on these sites and apps to kick start discussions or share their stories. As a result, brands are using them to learn more about their target audiences and connect with them on a deeper level. Some are even reaching out to other communities to build their online presence.
While there’s a lot more going on in the digital space, these powerful trends are disrupting the industry and changing consumer behavior. For more information related to social media, technology, and trending business practices, you can visit my IT Firm – Percento Technologies.