With three months left of 2018, we figured there is no better time than the present to take a look at some popular social media trends to see if they are…well, still trending. As one of the top marketing strategies at the beginning of the year, social media marketing has officially become something that as a business you cannot ignore. A marketing campaign with a social media presence contains a key branding platform that could give you a competitive edge against your competitors.

With layout redesigns and constantly changing algorithms, what was trending at the beginning of this year might not hold true towards the ending. So what is still trending?

Live Videos
Still making waves after its debut in 2017, Live Video is more appealing to consumers with 82% preferring live video to a static social post. This is a great way to connect, engage, and share your message with your target market. And as live streaming has become increasingly popular throughout this year, amongst businesses as well as consumers, this is a trend that your business will want to incorporate into your campaign strategy.

Chatbots
Dating back to the early days of AOL instant messenger, chatbots are not a new feature of the internet in the slightest. But just like everything else online, they are evolving with the times and chatbots are now being integrated with social media platforms to easily open a line of communication with the consumer. On both ends of the conversation, the automatic responses are offering a cost-effective alternative to customer support while still benefitting the end user.

Influencer Marketing
With social media algorithms constantly changing, being seen as a brand can get difficult at times and can sometimes end with users simply ignoring the “noise”. Influencers have been an increasingly more common solution to the ever-changing platforms and can ultimately help get your brand name out there. While most companies seek influencers with a significant following, micro-influencers can provide the same benefits without breaking the bank. Not only are they are more accessible to the small business (or budget) but they are typically more loyal to the brand relationship and carry a valuable level of trust amongst their followers.

Paid Advertisements
In 2018, gone are the days that you can consistently post across multiple platforms and speak to the masses. In addition to influencer marketing, another solution to the change to show more family and friends and less company content is paid advertisements. Brands are taking full advantage of the opportunity to get their posts in front of a targeted audience and platforms like Facebook are making it easy to set up audience precisions as well as a daily or weekly budget.

User-Generated Content
While the previous two trends require a substantial marketing budget, user-generated content is a great way to grow your business’s online presence with very little work and money. Encouraging your customers to talk about your company over social media creates a powerful connection to that user as well as their followers. It is also a great way to capture your product/service in action to reshare on your own social profiles.

One reality to face is that referral traffic and organic reach are in decline, so brands have to come up with alternative methods to reach potential customers. As we mentioned before, online advertising and influencers are current marketing trends that your business might want to explore. Another thing to keep in mind is that other small businesses are increasing their social presence, making it more crucial than ever to be putting in the same effort as the competition.

Feeling a little overwhelmed? With so many social platforms out there to manage, it might be worthwhile to hire a social media marketing manager to help maintain an active profile. This not only leaves the marketing to the experts but it also allows you to get back to the core of your business.

Schedule a free consultation today and we can chat about the best trends to follow that benefits your business!

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