We recently attended the worlds biggest social media conference in the beautiful city of San Diego, California, and it was absolutely phenomenal.
So what can we learn from 2,500 other marketers, and 130 of the worlds leading experts in social media and online marketing? With over 100hrs on recorded content and also private meetings with the biggest names (we’re talking Pat Flynn, Kim Garst, Natalie Sisson, Rick Mulready and Vincent Ng) we have a lot of knowledge to offer.
So here’s our 5 main takeaway trends from Social Media Marketing World 2015:
Visual Content is Becoming More Important – As life becomes more and more fast paced and the rise of content marketing means that there is an unfathomable amount of content available to consume, images are becoming more important. We simply just don’t have the time to read all we want to read, but pictures say a thousand words right? Whether it is an info-graphic, or a photo, or a cool graphic, they are all great mediums to use to communicate your points and your brand. And they only take a few seconds to consume. So if you aren’t creating graphics then you’re engagement will start to decrease. There are articles on atomic showing you how to create high end graphics yourself.
Youtube is Powerful (and live streaming is here) – If a picture says a thousands words then videos say, well quite a bit more! Other than Facebook (more on that later), Youtube is the next best social network that marketers are seeing results from, so start thinking about creating and sharing video. Also, new apps Meerkat and Periscope have brought live Video Streaming to mobile in the past month. Brands are still working out the best ways to use these for marketing purposes, but keep an eye on them in the next few months. The key to both of these is that more and more people want to consume their content through video these days and that is only set to rise… See here how to create high end videos for an affordable price.
Native Video – Have you been scrolling through your Facebook feed to find a video that starts playing automatically? That’s a native video, and basically it is a video that has been uploaded straight to Facebook rather than embedding a video in from YouTube. Facebook now offers stats on these videos for marketers, and they show the view rates are crazy high compared to embedding a video in the post. So if you are doing any form of video marketing, try uploading direct and test the response. This is a direct attack on the main competition YouTube/Vimeo so watch this space. Facebook might one day not allow you to embedded third party videos.
Facebook is Still a Powerhouse – Facebook has had a bad rap as of late as Facebook Page Posts reach an all time low in reach. However upon being surveyed 51% of marketers say Facebook is the number 1 traffic source (more than all the others combined), 62% say they are increasing their Facebook activity, and 67% want to learn more. So what is going on? Facebook has always been about the user first, and so Facebook Pages that don’t post useful or entertaining content aren’t reaching a high % of their fans, so we all need to be looking at what content we are posting, and trying to increase our engagement rates (note all the trends previous to this one!). Also, Facebook is now very much pay to play. However with the amount of data Facebook holds on our potential customers, we would be silly to ignore it. We have heard a lot of people say negative things about Facebook Ads, a lot of people saying it is expensive. But to be honest it will be expensive if you aren’t doing it right! The better your ads the cheaper it is, and for small businesses Facebook really does have a FANTASTIC targeted platform available for you to grow your audience. You just need to use it right, poorly performing ads can cost you over £10 a click, whereas great performing ads can be lower than 30p per click – 30p for a lead, you can’t complain at that!
Podcasting – It was hard to avoid the word ‘podcast’ throughout the conference. Podcasts have taken off MASSIVELY in the US and you still have time to get on board before they fully saturate the UK market. If you don’t know already, Podcasts are audio shows you can listen to either through the internet, or through your phone (you can’t actually delete the podcasts app on iPhones). The ability to be able to choose our audio shows when we are driving in the car, going out for a run, making tea etc. is going to be a direct threat to radio, as customers get use to more choice (like they have with everything else). So if you are looking to give your audience more choice in how they consumer your content and are already blogging/vlogging to grow your audience, then take a serious look at podcasting.
ACTION: There’s a lot there we know, but we encourage you to look at each trend, and note down at least 1 way you can use each trend to improve your current marketing.