Social Media Marketing Trends to Watch in 2018

The blessing and curse of social media marketing is how fast it changes and evolves – and alot can change in just 12 months.

Since we’re in the middle of our strategic planning for 2018, we thought we’d outline some of the top social media marketing trends we think brands need to watch for in the coming year.

Here are three developments to keep an eye on.

1. Rise in the Cost of Social Advertising

The time of free organic reach has passed us by, and we need to accept that to gain any kind of traction with social media marketing you need to have an advertising budget of some kind.

As the number of advertisers on social media increases, so will the cost of social ads – for context, spending on Facebook alone increased 74% year over year in 2017.

Overall, the cost of digital ads has increased 12% year-over-year. More brands are realizing that social media marketing provides an extremely cost-effective way to reach a targeted group of consumers, which is driving the competition for results with social advertising. A recent study shows that in the last year, the average CPM on Facebook has risen 171%, and the average CPC has increased 136%.

If you don’t plan on having or increasing your social advertising budget in 2018, consider yourself already behind your competitors.

2. Video Takes Center Stage

The importance of social media video content progressively grew in 2017 – however in 2018, video marketing will prove to be an even more important part of your content strategy.

Did you know that videos on social media generate 1,200% more shares than text and images combined? Since viewers retain 95% of a message when they see it in a video and only 10% retain it when they see it in text, you should seriously consider adding video content to your social media strategy.

It’s estimated that by 2019, video will account for 80% of all consumer internet traffic. It’s time to take video seriously.

3. Influencer Marketing Maintains Popularity

Using social media influencers to expand the reach of brand messaging was extremely popular in 2017, and it’s no surprise why.

Studies show that 74% of people look to their networks on social media for advice on buying decisions, and 40% of people have bought something based on seeing it being promoted by an influencer on Instagram or Twitter.

You can expect influencer marketing come under increased scrutiny, as its very common for influencers to ask for big fees while showing very little return data. However, with the right partnership agreements in place, you can use Influencer Marketing to make some noise for your brand in 2018.

Of course, these are only three trends to watch out for – there are many other developments on the horizon for social media marketing, such as augmented reality and digital hangouts. However, we wanted to present three trends that are actionable for businesses of all sizes – after all, it doesn’t do you any good to prepare for augmented reality filters that can cost a pretty penny if you’re a small to mid-sized business simply trying to impact your bottom line with social media.

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