We all know that habits and behaviors change, which is why it’s our job, as marketing managers and social media enthusiasts to keep up with consumer trends. After listening in on Hootsuite’s webinar “Social Trends You Can Put Into Practice In 2019,” Chameleon wants to share with you all the top 5 trends that you should start using for success on social media in 2019.

We hope that after you learn these tactics, you will adjust your marketing strategy and gain better brand representation.

The top 5 things to be aware of for social media in 2019 include rebuilding trust with your consumers, storifying social, closing the advertisement gap, cracking the commerce code, and messaging.

1. Rebuilding trust

This is probably the most important out of the five trends because without a trust between you and your consumer, you’re not going to make it very far. 2018 represented a year of crisis on social media, where fake news, the weaponization of social media, and data privacy drove the trust of consumers to an all-time low.

It’s no surprise. From the Cambridge Analytica Scandal to Facebook’s private security concerns, you can understand why consumers trusts have dropped. However, trust can be earned. We know that people are increasingly interested in knowing how their social media is tracked and who’s watching. Therefore, by being transparent about where your consumer’s data is going and how it’s being used is a very impactful way to gain their trust again.

If you think about it, by having a tighter circle of trust, you can influence and engage your consumers in a more effective way. Focusing on niche communities is another way to establish trust in a safe environment where dialogue can be facilitated. For example, Adidas’s Tango Squad Program partners with young athletes who have influence in niche communities, allowing them to connect with customers at a local level. This builds a loyal customer base and stronger engagement. They are essentially focussing on authenticity outreach through partnering with micro influencers.

How can you build trust?

  • Create a branded hashtag aligned with your community values and use it across all social media boards
  • Build a Facebook group and ensure that it’s been managed
  • Include micro-influencers in your strategy if it possible and if its a fit
  • Run monthly Live (Facebook) Q&As so your consumers know they can count on you

2. Storifying Social 

According to Hootsuite, Facebook predicts that “Stories” will take over news feeds within the next year as Stories are growing 15 times faster than feed-based sharing. People have shifted their social media usage to the mobile network, where the purpose is to catch things as they happen.

Why? Because Stories feels real, immediate, and personal. It allows for a 1-1 feel and has uncharted ROI measurement. For example, The Guardian has grown their Instagram followers from 860,000 to one million in just four months due to their spontaneous low-fi Story content.

How can you develop your Stories?

3. Closing the advertisement gap

According to Hootsuite, Marketers are increasing ad budgets and are producing more ads than ever before. 78% of respondents have either invested social advertising or plan to in the next 12 months.

Marketers need to focus on investing in creativity to rise above the advertisement noise and personalize their content. The ad gap challenge is learning how to provide effective personalized content without being too intrusive. For example, Netflix creates personalized experiences by combining creative social media ads with localized in-person events. Prior to the launch of the show, Riverdale, Netflix’s strategy earned them thousands of social media posts from fans because they created a local pop-up for their customers. Additionally, Tropicana used Story ads to integrate video and text.

How you can reduce the ad gap?

  • Understand and target the right audience
  • Invest in high-quality content
  • Repurpose concepts from top-performing organic content
  • Embrace new ad formats

4. Cracking the Commerce Code

Social shopping technologies bridge the gap between social media and e-commerce, especially among younger buyers comfortable with online shopping.

We know that shoppable technologies are gaining traction. We have seen how Instagram’s shoppable posts now allow users to make purchases without even leaving the app, and Pinterest’s Buyable Pins are used by 55% of customers to find and shop for products.

Essentially, these features are live, interactive, and seamless, which is what consumers appreciate. For instance, Glossier uses social video tutorials, user-generated content, and photography to showcase its products, and today, 90% of their company growth is attributed to social media followers. Even though they are relying on consumer review and content, their strategy has been working for their company and product.

How you can crack the commerce code?

  • Set up shoppable Instagram posts (if you have products to sell)
  • Share your products in action
  • Livestream your product demos
  • Experiment with AR to showcase your product in real-life scenarios

5. Messaging

Last but not least, people are spending more time on personalized messaging and less time sharing news on social media. According to Hootsuite, this is because the shift from public to private spaces will have a profound impact on consumer expectations.

For example, Sephora uses its Messenger bot assistant to create seamless booking experiences for customers. Not only does it make it easier for the user but Sephora has cut down booking steps by over 60% and increased in-store bookings by 11%. Additionally, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines expanded their leading service to WhatsApp to provide a more personalized customer experience.

How can you begin “messaging?”

  • Enable Facebook Messenger
  • Use messaging apps to streamline customer service queries
  • Set up bots for FAQ
  • Run campaigns that incorporate messaging apps
  • Have instant replies for when users text

Hootsuite’s webinar taught us about the upcoming social media trends and we shared the information with you. Now it’s your turn to change your strategies and implement some of these tactics to better your company’s online presence for the new year!