Five social media trends you need to know for 2018

Not so fast with the pina colada at the station Christmas party you!

We’ve almost wrapped up 2017, so it’s time to start brainstorming about new goals for next year to smash 2018 out of the park.

Next year is set to be even bigger for social media, as some exciting new tech developments get released into the market and a few social media areas are getting a big shake up. As you count down to the final few weeks of this year, here are five trends you be focusing your strategy on in 2018.

Publishing strong video content and compelling images

It will come as no surprise that visual content will continue to lead the way as the most engaging and effective posts when it comes to social media. You’ve got to make an impact and capture your fans’ attention so that you stand out in their feeds.

So what exactly should you be publishing that’s any different to what you are doing right now?

Go all out and focus a major part of your social strategy purely on video. Most platforms have strengthened their video capabilities, so dedicate a big chunk of your schedule and resources to producing strong videos.  Make it relevant, relatable and align it with your brand and you’ll be onto some winners.

Ephemeral marketing will become king and generate the most engagement

What do Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook all have in common? The ability to generate ephemeral content. The beauty of this feature is that you can use is to post more real-time, authentic content that only lasts a few seconds – and leave your regular feeds to publish high-res stylised images and video.

The bonus part? Since your stories disappear in a few hours, you force the audience to act on your call-to-action quickly.

Focus on personalised audience engagement  

It’s pretty easy to set and forget social media content, especially with a mountain of automation programs to choose from.

So you can understand how excited a listener gets if you personally address them and actually chat to them via live social media. They are not only surprised, they appreciate the interaction.

In 2018, it’s time to forget the robotic responses and “copy & paste” templates – you need to be having real conversations with your listeners via social media.

Pretend your brand is actually a person, and with engage with your audience accordingly – then you will eventually see a legion of fans that will let you know when they love your content. Post open-ended questions to your fans and make sure you respond back. It’s extremely important to maintain that human touch.

Ensure you upload regular stories so that you appear at the top of your fans’ feeds and remain fresh in their minds.

I strongly advise you create a separate strategy in 2018 for ephemeral content.

Embrace and publish regular live social media content

Live social media is essential – you’re in radio for heaven’s sake! So time for you folks to start going live, and more often. You’ve got Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat that give you the ability to do so – even on Messenger. It’s time to start planning live activations from events, promotions and big interviews.

Carefully consider user-generated content or influencer marketing

Brand marketing is heading in this direction, particularly since many companies are turning to those that are considered ‘real experts’ rather than some kid with 10,000 followers peddling charcoal toothpaste. Followers are turning against many social influencers because their so called ‘honest’ opinions are just paid editorial and cannot be trusted.

If you decide to go down this route, it’s important to set some clear goals that you are hoping to achieve by working with an influencer. Be honest and contemplate whether they really will help you deliver a return on investment.

To submit your content to Radio Today’s Social Scorecard, send us an inbox message via our Facebook page.

Social Scorecard is compiled exclusively for Radio Today by Jess Frangelli and is brought to you by Social News Desk.

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