Story image

Hootsuite's five social trends marketers should take note of

07 Dec 2018

Social media marketing has been through a bit of a tumultuous year as privacy concerns, personalised interactions and storytelling have shaped how businesses connect with audiences. Those social trends may well take an entirely new direction in the year ahead.

Hootsuite gazed into the crystal ball, crunched some data and came up with five major trends that should be keeping marketers, customer experience leaders, social media professionals and executives awake at night.

The Social Trends 2019 report says that rebuilding trust, storyliving, paid social, cracking the commerce code, and the rise of messaging may well be the most important trends that businesses should prepare for in the social media world.

Hootsuite’s top five trends in a nutshell:

Rebuilding trust

Hootsuite CMO Penny Wilson says that consumers’ concerns about privacy have taken them to more ‘private’ channels like Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and WeChat.

These create “unique opportunities for businesses to develop 1:1 relationships with customers, particularly as those customers increasingly prefer messaging for interactions like support,” Wilson says.

Customers are increasingly aware of who they are interacting with on social and what data they are sharing. Consequently, brands should be shifting their strategies to develop more relevant content that is both timely for the individual and authentic and genuine to the brand.

Storifying social

The concept of storytelling has also become much more than words on a screen. Videos posted on platforms such as Snapchat and Facebook Stories have been able to reach followers in a more engaging way.

Hootsuite says this provides opportunities for brands to share more human stories that are important, interesting, and timely to their audiences.

Stories are now growing 15 times faster than feed-based sharing, and for brands, this requires a major shift in focus in 2019. Content teams must now adapt as stories offer new formats for sharing, and for purchasing.

Closing the ads gap

Organic reach slowed down this year, which means brands have do give deeper into paid social to share their message.

More competition on paid social is forcing marketers to “up” their game. At the end of the day, brands who respect and engage with their customers as individuals and use relevant content to add value to their audiences will see the real return.

Cracking the commerce code

Ecommerce will still be huge – and it’s becoming a direct part of social channels to ‘complete the last mile of the buyer’s journey online’, Hootsuite says.

Finding ways to make shopping live, interactive and seamless - especially on mobile devices is key. In 2019 the most successful brands will go the extra mile to show customers how products and services can fit into the context of their lives.

Messaging eats the world

The top four messaging apps now count nearly 5 billion monthly active users, meaning messaging engagement is quickly eclipsing the more traditional social networks. Hootsuite says that 69% of customers say that directly messaging a company helps them feel more confident about the brand.

“Combined, these trends represent tremendous new opportunities for brands to establish deeper, more authentic, and longer-lasting connections with customers in 2019 and beyond,” concludes Wilson.

How big data can revolutionise NZ’s hospitals
Miya Precision is being used across 17 wards and the emergency department at Palmerston North Hospital.
Time's up, tax dodgers: Multinational tech firms may soon pay their dues
Multinational tech and digital services firms may no longer have a free tax pass to operate in New Zealand. 
Spark’s new IoT network reaches 98% of New Zealand
Spark is the first company to confirm the nationwide completion of a Cat-M1 network in New Zealand.
WhatsApp users warned to change voicemail PINs
Attackers are allegedly gaining access to users’ WhatsApp accounts by using the default voicemail PIN to access voice authentication codes.
Robots to the fore – Key insights for New Zealand Business into RPA in 2019
From making artificial intelligence a business reality to closer ties to human colleagues, robotic process automation is gearing up for a strong 2019.
50 million tonnes of e-waste: IT faces sustainability challenges
“Through This is IT, we want to help people better understand the problem of today’s linear “take, make, dispose” thinking around IT products and its effects like e-waste, pollution and climate change."
Vocus & Vodafone unbundle NZ's fibre network
“Unbundling fibre will provide retail service providers with a flexible future-proofed platform regardless of what tomorrow brings."
IDC: A/NZ second highest APAC IoT spenders per capita
New IDC forecast expects the Internet of Things spending in Asia/Pacific excluding Japan to reach US$381.8 Billion by 2022.