This is LiftMetrix’s next installment in our blog series of interviews with notable social media marketers from brands across various industries. Throughout this series of interviews, we have accumulated their responses to several questions, including their predictions for the future of social media, which can be viewed below.
- ‘The Importance of the “Now”’
Ryan Saghir, the Director of Digital Marketing from Sabra Dipping Company, gave insight that encapsulated several of the other top marketers’ responses: “I would say it is the importance of the “now” – I think there is a strength on Twitter that it’s just beginning to unlock. And I think we see that with Snapchat – taking a series of communications that is back and forth without having to worry about permanent repercussions. This is all used to show what is happening right NOW. Even with Facebook Live we’re seeing the strength of the “now” and I think you’re going to see some big changes when it comes to Twitter and the evolution of Facebook. I’m really bullish about Facebook Live and with Twitter really beginning to find it’s groove when it comes to Moments – I think Moments is one of the most significant things to develop on their platform. I think as we’re looking at it, the future of social and the prediction that I see is the growing purpose of being able to share the immediate “now” very quickly and easily with other people. I think that this is going to continue to develop into an overall trend.”
Expanding on this, Steve Madden’s Digital Content Manager Malikah Kelly’s response centered on the proliferation of ephemeral content: “I think that we’re going to see more disappearing content, so more apps similar to Snapchat where the content is just temporary. I think the cool thing about that is it requires urgency – I know I can look at my friends’ Instagrams or Facebooks all day and their stuff is always going to be there so I don’t necessarily have to rush to see it, but every time someone sends me a snap I look at it right away because I know that it’s going to disappear. I think we’re going to see a lot more apps that use that similar technology just to increase the urgency of looking at content and the amount of time you spend on the app because you feel that pressure to quickly jump on to see what people are posting.”
- Video, Video, Video!
Going off of the trends I think that video is huge right now I think it’s just getting bigger with the all of the live video platforms – things like Facebook and Periscope keep it growing and I think it’s really interesting that you’re seeing it being used in a lot of different way, said Nailah Blades, the CEO from Wylie & Co. “For example the way you saw Facebook live being used to film a police interaction that ended tragically, it’s kind of becoming this tool for community socialism so I think that that’s going to be a fascinating thing to see grow. Also, like a couple weeks ago when the democrats had a sit-in, and the CSPAN was cut of so one of the representatives filmed it on Periscope so that’s interesting how social media is becoming part of our lives and becoming its own media. Also I’m seeing a lot of growth of private communities, like faith groups for example. I think people and consumers are always looking for community, so I think brands want to provide that safe space whatever issues are tied in with the brand – that’s something that their audience and consumers will be really receptive to.
Michael Hammerstrom, Manager of Marketing and Engagement at CuriosityStream, correlates the growth of video to the growth of mobile and wearable technology: “I think the two biggest trends that I’m seeing in digital media are mobile and wearable technology. Social media is going to be a lot less text and more images and voice content so that people can ingest social media while they’re riding their bikes, they can listen to whatever they want. I think we’re going to see a lot more in the form of voice and video than we do text.”
Besides video, Lauren Gerstner, Director of Social Influence Marketing at H&R Block sees customer service as being a big focus: “I don’t know if it’s a prediction as much as an observation, but I’ve noticed that customer service has become a legitimate customer demand in the social space. Customers today expect that brands are listening, responding, and resolving issues that surface in social media. And that can be a challenge to brands to adapt their organization to adequately serve customers here. The other observation is that video has really emerged as the premium content format over the last year or so. It’s far and away the most engaging. So, investing in video as a major component of your content strategy will be a key trend.”
- The Evolution of Native Content
I think the next couple of years are going to see a lot of changes, probably five years, said Jodi Gersh, the Director of Social Media for Strategic Brand Marketing from USA TODAY. “Every year you read the end of year predictions for the next year and they were almost always the same – video is going to be the next big thing, mobile is going to be the next big thing – and it was that for many, many years. I would laugh that you could pull out your previous year’s blog post on predictions and use it again because the next year was kind of the same prediction, but I think this year and probably the next couple years are going to be a little different – I think things like Facebook instant articles, Google AMP and Apple news, are new ways that the larger platforms are trying to make the experience better for the users. I think those types of native, on the platform, types of articles or products are going to grow and there’s going to be more people who are utilizing them. Whether or not it gets to a point where everything is on platform and nothing is on your own site – I don’t want to go that far. But one prediction I have is sort of that native content that exists on Facebook, Twitter, Google and Apple, we’re going to see more of that, and that’s probably the future of social media.
You can view the full interviews with these stellar social media marketers by clicking here.