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We’ve managed to come across some very exciting news for social media that could work for you and your brand.
Here’s a list of new social media trends to look out for:
There was always something missing whenever you set-up shop on social media. Yes, you could tweet/post about a product you were selling but potential customers still had to leave your feed and visit your website before being able to complete a purchase.
The good news is: this is already in the works for popular social media sites like Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
Soon you’ll be able to buy stuff straight from your own news feed!
Pinterest has a “Buy It” option on iPhone, iPad, and Android devices, where you can buy Pinned products directly from Pinterest. Available products have a blue “Buy It” button next to the standard red “Pin It” button.
Here’s a short demo on how it works:
Facebook has been testing a Buy button for well over a year now and has been slowly rolling it out to more and more users. Like with Pinterest, Facebook’s option allows shoppers to buy products without ever leaving Facebook.
Twitter has its own version of a buy button that users can access to buy and sell directly from the Twitter stream. Shown below is an example of this new feature with the purchase of a pair of Warby Parker sunglasses.
Although these new updates for social shopping and e-commerce would only be considered a part of the return on investment (there’s still the lead gen and funnel parts that are important to consider), it’s one of the most crucial steps towards a direct, monetary result to one’s social media marketing.
Social media and your work
Have you always created separate accounts for your personal and work life? There’s some good news for us who have had to follow this tedious alter-ego lifestyle on Facebook. Just last year, Facebook at Work, announced that it was seeking to create a work-specific social media zone for employess wanting to communicate with each other. In short, it lets businesses create their own social networks.
Aside from Facebook, LinkedIn is also interested in a similar work-style social media where it’ll also be possible to branch out to other networks.
The separation of personal and social media opens up a whole new chapter on social media use. It would now be possible to easily filter messages to different types of people at different times of the day with custom audiences, providing a good platform to test various marketing tactics.
Chat apps and messaging
When we don’t want to check out our feeds but still keep in touch with everyone online, we usually go for messaging platforms: Messenger, WhatsApp, Skype, etc. And since there are no ads nor any algorithm constantly filtering what to display, they are the tools we rely on for normal conversations with both family and friends alike.
Social media is defined more often by ads and algorithms while messaging apps are the exact opposite. An example would be Snapchat’s feature where the user will choose to view a branded story and give it their full attention as compared to Facebook’s algorithm deciding which posts the user will see.
The WhatsApp newsletter
Companies can now use WhatsApp to publish a newsletter, too. People can opt in with their phone number rather than their email, and they automatically get the newsletter messages delivered as chats. Recipients who are interested are immediately made aware of current topics, and your relationship to the user, if not already established, is strengthened significantly. At the same time, as there is a more human element behind the message, it makes the application considerably more personal and can lead to a dialogue. This would be an interesting addition to your existing marketing tools.
Facebook Messenger can also be used as a way to engage with customers and perform basic e-commerce support roles like updates, order confirmations, shipping information, etc. Imagine if the role is supplemented by AI, taking away the manpower and resources usually needed for this kind of management.
Enter chatbots. Facebook will now allow businesses to deliver automated customer support, e-commerce guidance, content and interactive experiences through chatbots. Other than that, bots can send more than just text. They will be able to respond with structured messages that include images, links and call to action buttons. These could let users make a restaurant reservation, review an e-commerce order and more. You can swipe through product carousels and pop out to the web to pay for a purchase.
One main takeaway from all these exciting updates is that you can give your users more ways to hear from you – be it via newsletter text, chat, Messenger and more.