Top five social media predictions for 2019

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We’re nearing the end of another year. While we sit here and wonder where on earth 2018 went, we can also use this opportunity to reflect on the year that’s been and make plans for the year to come. With that in mind, now is the perfect time to give you some insights, on what we think are the top five social media predictions for 2019.

Throughout 2018, we saw many changes to social media.

Facebook alone had made over a dozen updates in the first quarter of the year, while other platforms like LinkedIn and SnapChat lifted their game with some much-needed creative redesigns. We’ve also seen a heightened use of the ‘Stories’ feature across Facebook and Instagram for individual users, influencers and businesses.

With social media being such a big part of our lives these days, users quickly become accustomed to new formats and features whether they love the change or not. The rate at which users adjust to change, paves the way for platforms to keep implementing new ideas, which is why we see so many changes in one year.

We already know of some definite changes in the pipeline for social media in 2019, but for the most part, we can take an educated guess and predict what the year will look like.

So what can we expect? Here are our top five social media predictions for 2019.

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AI-driven customer interaction

Artificial Intelligence is hot on everyone’s lips at the moment. You might not be aware of how much AI has already influenced our lives, but if you’ve ever had a conversation with Siri or had Netflix recommend you movies, you’ve interacted with AI.

In terms of social media predictions for 2019, we will see more AI-driven customer interaction though chatbots.

This human-to-robot messaging tool already offers instantaneous responses to customers 24/7.

We’ will see more businesses using chatbots to have those initial, important conversations that generate solid leads.

The reason why chatbots are so effective is that they answer questions and interact just as a human would. We would be forgiven for thinking we were speaking to a real person.

Facebook has its own messenger bots for businesses who prefer to run a chatbot service through the platform. These messenger bots have come a long way in simulating human conversation in the last year and we expect that to improve even more in 2019.

What this means for your business

AI and the 24/7 nature of social media has changed consumer expectations.

Consumers now expect instant responses from business anytime, anywhere. Chatbots don’t sleep… so they’re always available to answer questions from users all over the globe.

If you’re not taking advantage of instantaneous conversation, you could be losing potential customers.

This is the kind of opportunity you can’t miss out on. The more you think about what you could achieve through a chatbot, the more opportunities are opened up to you.

Changes in measuring organic reach

Throughout 2018 we have seen several social media platforms make changes to organic reach. For example, both Instagram and Facebook changed their algorithms so users could see more of their family’s and friend’s content and less from brands and business pages. This meant that many of the methods, businesses had in place to boost organic reach became less effective.

In 2019, we will see businesses having to change the way they use social media to compensate for the changes in organic reach. This means encouraging more unique, meaningful and engaging content accompanied by an even better understanding of your audiences.

What this means for your business

2019 will be a year to think about how you could improve your social media content. There will be plenty of areas where you could make these improvements to promote growth in organic reach.

Consider the different audiences you may have on each platform, don’t bundle them all together and assume they’re all the same. Different platforms do well with different content, so if you’re posting the same thing across several platforms, perhaps it’s time to re-think your strategy.

It’s also important to be social on social media.

Share other people’s content, not just your own.

This creates a sense of online community and shows you’ve taken the time to get to know your audience by giving them more of what they want to learn, and what they could find useful.

Heightened awareness of security, accuracy and privacy

After all that’s happened this year around data collection and privacy, we can definitely expect social media platforms to be more aware of data security in 2019.

2018 has been a hard year in terms of trust in social media.

Facebook went through a Congressional Hearing to improve security.

Twitter was bombarded with controversial bots and fake accounts.  As users became more and more distrustful, this presented businesses with a lot of challenges.

Needless to say, platforms have learned some hard lessons and will heighten their transparency and security to take better care of user data in 2019.

What this means for your business

In the wake of 2018’s privacy issues, there has been a shift in the kinds of content users want to see. Social media platforms now have moderators in place to avoid fake news or inaccurate information being delivered to their users.

It’s vital that businesses are smart with their content in 2019, earning and retaining their audience’s trust. Ensure you’re only putting out high quality content, be it your own or something you’re sharing.

Go over and above to create social media communities.

Create niche groups, encourage conversation, and facilitate engagement between like-minded consumers.

This way you can avoid heavy-handed pitches that could make your consumers feel as though you’ve ‘trapped’ them.

It’s easy to say that in terms of social media predictions for 2019, next year we’ll need to take more care with the information businesses share on social media.

Adding more personal touches through stories and live video

Social media stories and live video have been on the rise in 2018. These features have been around for a while but businesses are getting creative with how they use them to their advantage.

Stories and live video give your brand a personality. You can track who’s watching, encourage conversation and instantly answer messages related to the content in the video.

Facebook has had a live video feature for some time but, until recently, it was a little clunky to use. This feature improved a lot in 2018 which is why we predict it will be an effective social media tool in 2019.

Most social media platforms support video but live video and story functions are quickly overtaking the old-fashioned video upload. We expect to see an increasing number of businesses adapting a video strategy in 2019.

What this means for your business

If you want your business to succeed on social media, you should try to stay up to speed with new features.

The story function is easy to use and a measurable way of who actively follows your brand. Watching social media stories is intentional, meaning the people who watch, want to watch. Video content is one of the top social media predictions for 2019.

It’s important to remember that social media stories and live video are considered content and should therefore be prepared to a high standard. You will disengage your audience if you put out lacklustre video content the same way you would with poorly written content.

The rise of the social media influencer

Ah, the social media influencer.

What a life, huh?

But to give them their dues, they’re doing huge things for businesses on social media.

Social media influencers took off in 2018. Some new faces came onto the scene and some slipped off the radar. But for the savvy social media influencer, their follower numbers sky rocketed.

There’s something therapeutic about watching an influencer open their many PR packages each day.

On one hand we’re thinking “why does one person need so much stuff?” while on the other hand we’re thinking “I want that stuff, just tell me where to get it.”

And businesses are cashing in on this inexpensive (sometimes) form of marketing.

We expect social media influencers to be alive and well in 2019 with even more businesses cottoning on to the idea.

What this means for your business

Don’t be too quick to snub the idea of taking on a social media influencer.

These people have huge followings across several platforms. A simple agreement with an influencer could see your product or service being tried and tested in front of hundreds of thousands of people in one day.

Remember, social media has opened the doors to a myriad of creative and extremely effective marketing methods. It’s all about taking advantage of them.

Influencers are on the rise and a solid competitor in social media predictions for 2019.

Maybe 2019 is your year to get one on board?

social media predictions for 2019

Keeping up with social media trends is vital to predicting what’s ahead.

For businesses on social media, these social media predictions for 2019 could be either a challenge or an opportunity.

We think it’s the latter.

It’s not always easy to stay on top of social media changes when you’re trying to run a business, so let us do that for you. Through our knowledge and skill in social media, we can help you achieve significant business growth.

Call us today to have a chat about a social media strategy that will work for you.