We are entering a new era of social media marketing. With platforms and algorithms constantly evolving, brands need to stay nimble and forward-thinking to succeed. As we look ahead to 2024, several key trends stand out that will shape social media strategy for advertisers.
- In 2024, authenticity reigns supreme.
- As consumers grow weary of polished perfection and inauthentic influencer promotions, they crave real connections and transparency from brands.
- User-generated content (UGC) performs best, as it comes across as genuine.
- Brands should focus on creating content that feels honest, approachable and human.
- Show behind-the-scenes glimpses into company culture, have employees share stories, and highlight real customer experiences.
- This emotional branding builds loyalty and community.
Video is Vital
- Short-form vertical video dominates social media feeds.
- Brands must optimise video content for mobile viewership and maximum retention.
- Work with creators skilled in visually compelling storytelling.
- Interactive elements like polls and AR effects boost engagement.
- Remember videos need to feel authentic as well – viewers want to connect with real people, not overly polished promotional material.
Influencers: Quality over Quantity
- When partnering with influencers, brands should prioritise content quality and audience connection rather than follower count alone.
- Micro and niche influencers often resonate more authentically.
- Look for creators who align closely with brand values versus one-off sponsorships.
- Build long-term relationships.
- Enable influencers to craft content in their own voice, while integrating branded elements seamlessly into narratives.
The Power of Community
- In 2024, brands should encourage community building and discussion around their content.
- Social media algorithms favour engagement through comments, shares and user-generated content.
- Ask questions to prompt conversation.
- Highlight user reviews and testimonials.
- Facilitate fans connecting with each other and the brand.
- Loyal brand advocates who actively participate will become increasingly valuable.
AI Assists - It Doesn't Replace
- AI tools can help generate initial ideas and draft social media content, but human oversight remains essential.
- While AI is great for optimising and automating routine tasks, it currently lacks strategic thinking, creativity and emotional intelligence.
- Use AI assistance to free up time for your team to focus on higher value areas like relationship-building.
- Ensure any AI-generated content is reviewed for tone, messaging and alignment with brand values before publishing.
Test and Iterate
- With social media changing rapidly, brands should continually test and refine their strategies.
- Use A/B testing to experiment with different content formats, messaging, targeting and more.
- Analyse both engagement metrics and reach/impressions to understand performance.
- Dedicate a portion of budgets to trying new tactics and capitalising on opportunities.
- Remaining nimble and evolving approaches based on data will set brands up for long-term success.
The Social Media Arena in 2024
While platforms fight for dominance in 2024, TikTok and LinkedIn currently lead in engagement and innovation. However, new developments are on the horizon:
- TikTok continues to captivate with its addictive short videos. Brands need to leverage the playfulness and interactivity of the platform.
- LinkedIn provides unparalleled B2B networking. Thought leaders and employee advocates should share stories.
- Facebook's Threads app mixes messaging and Stories. Create content specifically for intimate viewing.
- YouTube remains strong with its massive user base. Optimise video content for YouTube’s AR, livestream and short-form offerings.
- Twitter offers opportunities for real-time engagement. Monitor conversations relevant to your brand.
New players could also disrupt the social media landscape, so remaining nimble is key. Meet audiences on the platforms where they are most active, while tailoring content to leverage unique functionality.
The Path Ahead
The brands that will thrive in 2024 are the ones that embrace authenticity and community building across social media.
They balance human connection with strategic AI optimisation. They craft compelling digital stories using emotive formats like video. They continually test and evolve approaches based on audience response and engagement.
With the rapid pace of change in social media, the future belongs to forward-thinking brands willing to take risks and stay ahead of trends.
Author Expertise and Experience:
Philippe Dominois is co-founder and CEO of Abintus Consulting, and Head Coach at the Abintus Academy. He has over 25 years of international media experience, having worked on the media agency side, client side, and media auditing side throughout his career. Philippe has authored hundreds of articles over the years that focus on media management best practices.
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