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2018 Social Media Trends That Would Influence Your Business

The year has begun in earnest, an increase in the power of social media trends that would affect both the users and brands have forced us to slowly examine what these trends are in Nigeria and how to harness these trends into productivity.

As seen from the emerging issues of last year, Social norms are slowly regulated by social media and the changes it makes in people’s lifestyle. This year it is evident that social media would create even more disruption as a number of new technological advancement go even mainstream

The following trends to look out for this year may include:

Increase in the popularity of Instagram Stories:

Instagram Stories which was created in August 2016, an alternative to Snapchat, has a spin that allows brands to post without overwhelming people’s feeds. It currently has over 200 million people using it monthly, yet it is predicted that half of all Instagram users will be using Stories by the end of this year. Hence, any brand interested in canvassing Instagram users must take time to connect and master Instagram Stories.

This shows that video content would continue to grow, as it elicits higher engagement. Also, Instagram Stories, Snapchat, and even live streaming video would be needed to engage with your users.

Focus on Generation Z

I had often wondered why we were called Generation Z, upon investigation, I discovered that it is used to refer to a generation with high social media usage.  These people are perhaps, more valuable to the most organization than the millennials. These set of people are addicted to the social media world.

Digital Natives, as they are called spend most of their time glued to their phones laptops, the virtual world as a whole, they are usually people born between the mid-1990s and 2010. This year, any organization interested in growing should cater to the needs of the generation. They would be a great investment in platforms loved by these people as brands will begin to recognize this and will shift their social media strategies accordingly.

Investing in Social Media will become A Necessity.

It would no longer be a question of choice, but one of compulsion in Nigeria. 2018 will tilt the scales from “should invest” to a “must invest”. Businesses will realize the essence of hiring strategists and professionals in social media related careers in other to get their job done. There would be an integration of content marketing strategy with social media efforts as both would, vis-à-vis, influence the other and particularly the organization’s revenue.

Mobile Optimized Application would be on the increase.

A lot of Nigerians are highly mobilized, even to the extent of being awarded the most mobilized countries. Many users would, therefore, access social media platforms through mobile exclusively. There has been a trend of mobile-only or mostly mobile social app and this would surely be on the rise this year. Facebook, an exception to the rule was not initially designed to be on mobile, however, its usage on mobile has increased, and they hopefully are looking to enhance the opportunity. Likewise, brands will (finally) have no excuse for creating or distributing contents that are not optimized for mobile.

Increased brand participation in messaging/ chat bots platform

Want your business to grow this year, one trend you should follow closely is personalizing your customer service relationships using messaging or chatbots platforms, apart from your web contact forum, your audience should be able to reach out to you through direct messaging on various social media messaging platforms. They are so valuable due to the fact that instant connection and widespread internet access has made many customers/clients crave for things that they can get in the next five minutes. If you aren’t using it already, 2018 might be the year to test chatbots for your business.

This year, invest more time and money in connecting with consumers using messaging platforms. Personalized shopping experiences can be offered by brands using artificial intelligence, voice assistants and chatbots on messaging platforms like Messenger, WhatsApp, and Kik.

 

Feature Image credit: shynee.com

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Adepeju Adenuga

Adepeju Adenuga is a writer (considering where you are reading this, makes perfect sense). She holds a Masters Degree in Literature in English from the University of Lagos.

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