I’ve been thinking about my social media strategy for 2019 while researching trends and tactics. How do I get my own brand, as well as the brands I work for, to stand out next year? What worked for me this year? Will this continue to work into 2019? Or do I need to re-evaluate my strategy? Here are my thoughts on some key tactics you should be employing.
I’ve written about social media listening before and I believe strongly that this is an important part of any social media strategy. Social media can be a loud, overwhelming space. Too many brands want to be heard and very few actually hear. Listening and, by extension, hearing are a crucial part of running a successful campaign. Social media monitoring tools are essential if you are serious about social media marketing. They help us know what is being said about brands across social media. They also help you to adjust your brand’s strategies and tackle problematic areas. Get into the habit of social listening. Hear to what is being said and react accordingly.
This is an under-utilised strategy that has the potential to be one of the best formulas for brand success on social media. For brands, user-generated content is literally free content to use as needed. And followers love that their content is acknowledged, used and featured. It’s their five minutes of fame, so to speak, and goes a long way in engendering brand loyalty. An added bonus is that as other followers watch their peers being featured, they too will be encouraged to engage in more meaningful ways. Think community, authenticity and cost-effectiveness – this is a tactic that we should not ignore in 2019.
Influencers are an important part of the social media world. But larger influencers are beginning to lose their shine. More brands are turning to micro-influencers instead. These influencers have a smaller number of followers but are valued because they are more capable of reaching niche demographics. They don’t spread themselves thin. They understand and are loyal to their niche. And if that niche ties in with your brand ethos, micro-influencers are an invaluable resource. While I never favoured the term influencer, I am far more partial to a micro-influencer. They are generally more knowledgeable in their niche and therefore more authentic. The number of followers is less important. And as I’ve always believed in quality rather than quantity, I believe if I am going to be using influencers in my social strategy micro-influencers would be my first choice.
It began with Snapchat – content that only lasted 24 hours on a platform. The idea was to create an ethos of exclusivity and spontaneity. And it became such a hit that very soon Instagram and Facebook introduced their own space for ephemeral content in the form of Stories. Stories have given Instagram a huge boost. I had my doubts about the success of this content because I like the idea of recording and archiving what I create. But ephemeral content is appealing to users more and more. And after playing around with it in my own feed, I am coming around to understand its allure.
Video has grown in popularity over the last few years. And now live video is the prized content we should be looking to utilise in our social media plans. Live video gives a sense of users being closer to the action. It also gives a sense of spontaneity rather than planned and choreographed content. Video has definitely changed the face of content creation. Live video will open new doors and avenues to explore.
Also important next year will be direct messaging, chatbots and augmented reality. These are exciting developments and will take your social media activity to the next level.
As 2019 descends on us alarmingly quickly, it’s time to assess your social media strategy and consider what works best for the brands you manage. Have you begun thinking about your social media strategy for 2019? What tactics do you think are the top priority? Drop me a comment and let’s start a discussion on the year ahead 😉.
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