When asked to put together a list of things that Tillison Consulting predict will the shape of Social Media for 2013 I was a little hesitant.
New Year’s lists always seem to be full of rapidly concocted ideas under the duress of a deadline only to result , 12 months later, in very few of them coming to fruition. But tasked with the job of creating a list I did my research and this is what I found….
2013: All About The Visuals
The majority of human beings are visual learners; we absorb 400% more information if images are incorporated. With recent user figures for social media networks in mind I would go as far as to say that we are 400% more likely to be interested in a visual image as well.
Whilst it may have hit the headlines in a negative way towards the end of 2012, Instagram saw their followers grow from 860,000 to over 11million in the last 12 months. But they weren’t alone; Pinterest saw similar success with their community growing to 20million. I predict that this will continue well in to 2013 as will the incorporation of visuals into other social networks such as Twitter and Facebook.
2013: Brand Blogging
We have seen an increase in brand journalism over the last year as companies embrace new ways of engaging with their audience by self-publishing blog posts and articles. Social Media for 2013 will see more companies following suit in order to maximise the personalisation of their company and keep tighter control on brand image. This will include things like Facebook posts, Twitter, Blogs, direct mail and LinkedIn (see LinkedIn Strategies for Business).
2013: Return on Investment
As Social Media continues to push its way to the forefront of digital marketing companies are having to invest more in both services and staff to remain on top. Like all businesses the more you put in, the more you want to see come out, which is why in 2013, we predict that there will be an increased focus on the ROI of social media.
Do we know the financial gain of one more like of Facebook or 10 retweets instead of 1? Not yet, but as the focus on social media increases, companies will be looking to put a figure on the value of these elements.
In 2013 businesses will have to find a way to monetise the impact of Social Media.
2013: Building Bridges With Bloggers
Bloggers are the key in 2013 for B2C companies. If you are looking to push a product or service then you need to hunt out high profile bloggers and get them onside. Bloggers not only have an online following but also an extensive, interactive social media one which means the potential reach for a review of a gifted product or service could be huge.
2013: The Rise of Mobile Media
Smartphones and tablets will continue to dominate the market this year which means those generating Social Media messages will have to remember the size of screen on which their audiences will be viewing their messages. Long Facebook posts will be replaced by links to videos or related images and links to short articles via Twitter or Google+ will more prolific.
Time will tell if these predictions come to fruition but I feel confident in saying that with the way social media is being adopted by companies of all shapes and sizes, 2013 is going to be a very interesting and potentially explosive year.