Social media marketing continues to prove an effective resource for businesses of any industry. However, this tool needs to be utilized with proper knowledge of trends and vigilance to keep your brand alive online. 2016 had it’s fair share of social media marketing innovations, but it’s time to think about where we’re heading now that the new year is in full-swing.

Here are four social media predictions for 2017:

 

  1. Paid Advertising Will Diversify

You’re behind the curve at this point if you aren’t already using Facebook ads for your business. With almost 1.8 billion monthly active users, Facebook is a giant when it comes to advertising on social networks. Their advertising domination only became more robust after the company bought Instagram in 2012.

Last year, Snapchat introduced its Snapchat Partners advertising interface. With an IPO expected to happen some time in the near future, look for Snapchat – and other top social media networks – to continue leaning on paid advertising to bring in enough revenue to satisfy board members and shareholders.

 

  1. Video Will Be More Widely Used

In the last few years, video marketing has seen a steady increase in usage. According to HubSpot, 87% of online marketers are currently using video content. We expect to see this trend continue – as more tools are created to make video accessible to companies of all sizes, more and more businesses will jump on the train.

Not all videos will be fancy, expensive productions created with a professional video crew. Tools like Vidyard’s ViewedIt make it easy for companies to make videos, even if they are working with a minimal budget. Look for low-cost video creation tools to continue to emerge, which will make video accessible for marketers of all varieties.   

 

  1. eCommerce & Social Media Will Continue to Blend

The line between social media and eCommerce will continue to blur in 2017. We’ve already seen tools like Venmo and Square Cash become prominent for friends and colleagues who need to send each other money. In 2015, Facebook launched a feature that allowed payments to be sent through its Messenger platform. Just this month, it was reported that Facebook had received a license for e-payments from Ireland’s Central Bank. In 2017, we expect to see other social media networks developing ways to mix financial transactions and social communication.

 

  1. Personalization Will Become More Prominent

The days of skepticism about internet security and privacy are quickly coming to an end. As generation Z becomes old enough to make purchases online, the emphasis on personalization in digital marketing continues to rise. Research shows that 57% of online consumers don’t mind giving websites their personal information as long as it’s used responsibly and for their benefit.

We predict that this number will continue to increase this year and beyond, as consumers who grew up with the internet and are less concerned about security start to make up a larger share of eCommerce sales. The more relevant information you can provide for prospects, the easier it will be to convert them into followers and customers.

No matter what happens, 2017 is set to be an interesting year in digital marketing. We will continue to follow the latest trends and developments to ensure that we offer the best possible service to all of our clients this year and years to come!