As 2013 comes to a close with just a fortnight remaining, it is great to know how digital and social media continue to evolve as the greatest platforms. It, therefore, turns out to be exciting to see what surprises it holds in the next year and how businesses, brands and marketing landscapes would change in 2014. Keeping a few potential trends of the forthcoming year in mind will not only make you aware, but will also help you prepare for them.
There have been studies and researches demonstrating the fact that growth of brands and businesses will depend on social media marketing on a larger basis. Social media, which is still maturing and evolving, needs to be understood completely by brands. This is one of the reasons why it is important to focus on future opportunities and upcoming trends. The year 2014 will witness social media as the game changer for brands across the world.
There are a lot of things that we thought would shape the social media space next year. These are…
No specific social media managerial role
There won’t be any specific social media managerial role, in fact those already into these roles will evolve as experts in the field, spreading the gospel of social media everywhere. As it’s already seen that social media has become a major part of everybody’s life now. Even most of the jobs will look for those who use social media in some or the other way.
Social media in schools
Will schools also, like recruiters, look into the social profiles of candidates?
The reply is, yes. If a candidate will not have a relevant social media profile, he or she might get rejected. The reason is the rise of social media as a core skill requirement. Teachers have already and will in 2014 continue teaching the online etiquettes and equip the students with all the knowledge of entering the digital and social media world. It will, therefore, become a part of their curriculum. Soon, we will have students who will be taught social media, how to build a social media strategy and all the social media marketing and business tactics.
The rise and rise of social media ads
Those days of old ways of advertising will be a passé. 2014 will witness social media ads roping in with great innovation and challenge. Apart from just being present on the social media platforms, social ads are comparatively more effective and engaging. Promoted ads, tweets and posts are considered to have greater reach level. Advertising on social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter have already taken off successfully and will continue to explode into this space in 2014 too; inviting a great level of attention. This industry is already worth billions and is sure to garner higher revenues in times to come.
What is more exciting with the end of this year is that now a major portion of the masses owns a smartphone; which naturally opens the doors for social ads. Social ads are said to be more effective than traditional ways of advertising, as they take no space at all and fit perfectly into mobile screens in terms of viewing.
Growing importance of video
2014 is sure to get fuelled with one thing undoubtedly, and that is – video. Yes, we are going to have a generation that relaxes on a couch, in front of a TV, watching videos on YouTube in their mobile phones. People are now keen on watching online videos than watching what is being broadcast on the television. They love to watch and then later share it with their friends online.
This year saw Instagram, which became very popular among the youth, also coming up with its newly launched video features.
2014, therefore, holds larger potential into this space. For instance, remember the recent news where Facebook’s attempt to take in Snapchat for a whopping $3 billion took place and failed? Snapchat is a social network that allows users to share short video clips with text and images. It lasts for a few seconds and is quite popular among the users mostly aged between 13 and 25 years.
Videos have a great ability to communicate the message to the viewers in a very powerful way. Short and crisp videos are and will be very strongly shared across online platforms by people. Many brands have already and many will be considering videos as an important part of their marketing strategy. Therefore, coming year would definitely see brand and businesses evolving with the power of videos.
Social media for connecting with employees
Employees with a sound social media background will be the first choice of companies in 2014. Connection with employees would be strongly built through social media, which will involve interactions, discussions and feedbacks, etc. Therefore, 2014 will see organisational empowerment on a larger scale with companies using social media to gain insights into what is happening within the company in order to work closely with their employees and take fruitful decisions for the betterment of the company and employees both.
Search goes social
Search in 2014 will completely go social. Yes, we are talking about Google+, which has almost made itself harder to be ignored in the coming year. If you as a brand manager want an edge over competitors and also your brand to be on the top search result, you will have to start using Google+. Google+ continues to integrate innovation by adding Google hangouts followed by other innovations. Google will surely use SEO optimisers in other spaces as one of the element in their strategic growth.
Social media will be one of the most important investments for brands. Social media will be the place where potential consumers, prospects and communities would exist. Nowadays, people first tend to search their favourite brand online and if you aren’t present in that space, you lose the brand presence and then the image. Therefore, coming year would prove social media to be a great relevant investment that meets the needs of all consumers across.
Do you agree with the above predictions for 2014 in the social media sphere? Well, we didn’t look into the magical crystal ball for all the above predictions for social media in 2014. But we would like if you share your plans for the coming year and how do you think it will shape up for the social media space. Do share your thoughts with us!