Social Marketing Trends to Watch in 2014
Any modern marketer should by now be well aware of the three fundamentals of online advertising: content, search and social. The importance of content and search shouldn’t come as much of a shock to advertisers, as blog posts and keyword optimization have been a staple of online marketing practically since the advent of the Internet. What today’s businesses are really going to want to focus on is the social aspect. Indeed, over the last few years, social media sites have exploded, with popular outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube boasting billions of registered users between them.
But like any online entity, the landscape of social is an ever-shifting one. New trends and technologies come and go, with all but the most universally lauded websites enjoying anything resembling longevity in this fleeting Internet age. Add to that the mobile revolution and social networking is poised to undergo even more crucial changes in the coming year. Here are just three of the top trends that those with an interest in social marketing should keep their eyes on.
Social media marketing becomes mandatory
Just as many companies employ article writers to contribute blog posts, look for these same organizations to establish entire social media departments. Many businesses have already created these in-house departments, as the benefits they have on lead generation and ROI are undeniable. Plus, it simply won’t be tenable for any marketing operation to overlook social in 2014 and beyond.
Images over text
Successful marketers know the value of original, authoritative text content. But what more and more of these same folks are learning is the value of “share-able” content. And in 2014, how likely a piece of online content is likely to be shared among users will be directly related to how many images it contains. Sites such as Pinterest, Slideshare and Tumblr have skyrocketed in popularity due to the emerging trend of pictures over words. There’s been a sharp spike in how much visual content has been passed across social networking sites in 2013, and this will only compound in the coming year.
All but written off by the majority of online aficionados when it was released in 2011, Google’s social platform has slowly but surely won people’s hearts. This is evidenced by the fact that, at the moment, Google+ ranks second only to Facebook in terms of unique monthly users. The reason this should matter to marketers is because Google+ is as much a launching pad for all encompassing search engine optimization as it is a social network. It utilizes social signals to deliver a tailored search experience to each individual user. And when one factors in Google Authorship, the writing on the wall states that this could be the most dominant social site of 2014.
In the end, marketers are going to want to pay particular attention to the rise of video-based social networking sites. Above all else, look to the competition between major platforms such as Facebook and Google+ to yield big innovation in order to keep up with these video trends.
Christopher McMurphy is an online trend spotter focusing on marketing and SEO. But his talents extend to copywriting and press releases as well.
About Chris McMurphy
As a blogger with many years of experience under my belt, I focus my efforts on digital marketing. I thrive on creating authoritative content and always look forward to the newest changes to the landscape of social media and search engine optimization.