Social media marketing opportunities are rapidly expanding and companies are moving to e-commerce faster than planned due to the global business environment. New digital worlds are opening up as well-known brands move into virtual real estate. Social media platforms provide an opportunity to connect with customers where they spend their time, leading to greater brand awareness and more significant sales.
But the more we communicate and communicate in the digital space, the more consumers want the human experience: good customer service, commitment and accountability.
Brands and marketers need to be aware of what’s happening on social media platforms, and conventional social media strategies require innovation. But most importantly, brands need to know what their customers think. So, here are some of the biggest social media trends in 2022 that you can use to grow your business.
Social media will continue to be a platform for buying goods and services in 2022 with the rise of social commerce. Social commerce is the confluence of e-commerce and social media, where user-generated content, influencers, and consumer appeals added to posts encourage consumers to buy.
Brands must use the shopping feature on all of their social media platforms. For example, Instagram has link stickers that direct consumers directly to shopping sites and shopping stickers that provide product information such as price.
TikTok is relatively new to social e-commerce compared to Facebook and Instagram. But with LIVE shopping, they allow users to buy what they learn while watching a brand’s broadcast.
Social customer service
PricewaterhouseCoopers, a professional services consulting firm, has published a report on the future of customer experience. Their research shows that the human factor must be built into automation, artificial intelligence and other technologies, including social media platforms. The statistics highlight the following:
- 73% of people consider customer service significant factor in their buying decisions
- 42% of respondents will pay more for a friendly, welcoming experience
- 65% find a positive brand experience more influential what a great ad
Companies need to get back to basics, using social media to build relationships and provide quality customer service to their audiences. Social media platforms are the digital version of traditional word of mouth marketing, and news of good or bad customer service on social media travels quickly.
New digital entities in the metaverse
In the future, social media marketing could target audiences not only to shopping websites, but to the metaverse as well. The Metaverse is becoming more than a platform for digital games; it is also a sales platform. Walmart is delving into the technology of the metaverse, offering things like trademark applications for cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs), among many others.
Gucci has bought virtual land in The Sandbox, an Ethereum-based NFT gaming metaverse, and will begin building the world on this metaverse platform. It follows luxury brand Gucci’s Vault project, a mixed reality (MR) space that houses NFT collections and vintage items for purchase. Adidas already has Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs dressed as a virtual collection of items that are also available in the physical world.
AR and VR social media campaigns
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) will become more prominent in social media marketing. For example, studies show that in 2020 there were 2.69 billion video game players worldwide, and this year’s revenue was $159 billion: this figure will rise to $3.07 billion by 2023. With numbers like these, players will begin to expect an equally immersive experience on their chosen social media platforms.
Currently, short content is being used to sell products and services on social media. AR and VR social media campaigns need to consider larger content such as interactive tours, self-assessments, and instant product demos to sell on social media.
Emphasis on giving
Giving back is an innate human need. Today people are more aware of social issues, be they local, national or global. As a result, giving back will become an even more significant trend on social media. But it must be done in an authentic, transparent and accountable way.
Consumers look beyond the products and services they receive from a brand. They want to know what the brand is all about, and that should include some sort of help to the communities. Whether your brand highlights a public charity or encourages donations to a cause, consumers want to know that companies are sincere in their support. Giving should not be an addition, but a life value.
Be a responsible brand
Consumers hold brands accountable for their commitments. Companies can no longer say something but not deliver. Social media platform Pinterest launched a feature called Merchant Details last year. This allows brands to highlight their values, such as “inclusiveness” and “responsible origin,” on their profiles.
Businesses need to know what their customers are saying about their brand. If you claim that your company, product, or service offers something specific, that’s what consumers expect. Or they will talk about it on social media and managing those social media discussions will require a genuine and honest response plan.
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