Social Media Trends 2024
With social media, staying ahead of the curve is essential for businesses. As we look forward into 2024, it’s time to anticipate the major trends shaping the social media landscape. This guide will delve deep into the top 5 social media trends to watch out for in 2024. These trends cover everything from the continued dominance of authentic User-Generated Content (UGC) to the rising influence of Generative AI. So, let’s get started whilst we look to discover the path that will lead your social media strategy to success.
1. Authentic User-Generated Content (UGC) – UGC is Still King
User-generated content (UGC) has undeniably been reigning supreme in the world of social media. In 2024, this trend will be more potent than ever as authenticity remains the cornerstone of building trust and credibility with your audience.
The Power of User-Generated Content
User-generated content is, at its core, the most authentic form of marketing. It’s not created by brands but by your customers. These individuals share their experiences and stories about your products or services. This genuine endorsement goes a long way in building trust and credibility. People trust their peers more than they trust advertisements.
Consider this: you’re looking for a new restaurant to try, and you stumble upon a beautifully plated dish posted by a fellow food enthusiast on Instagram. The chances are high that this peer review will influence you more than a well-crafted advertisement by the restaurant itself. This is the essence of UGC.
The Impact of Successful UGC Campaigns
The impact of successful UGC campaigns on a brand’s reputation and sales can’t be understated. The ‘Share a Coke’ campaign by Coca-Cola is a classic example. By printing popular names on their bottles and encouraging people to share photos with #ShareACoke, they turned a simple product into a social phenomenon. Customers eagerly shared their personalised bottles on social media, creating a massive buzz. Coca-Cola’s sales soared, all thanks to user-generated content.
Encouraging and Curating UGC
To leverage UGC effectively, you must encourage your customers to create content related to your brand. This can be as simple as creating a unique hashtag for your brand or running contests that incentivise users to share their experiences.
Here is a great blog covering how brands can maximise customer engagement using UGC.
2. Business Approach to Social Media Marketing – Fun and Relatable Content
Social media isn’t merely a platform for corporate announcements or dry advertisements. In 2024, companies that master making their brands feel fun and relatable are reaping the rewards.
The Evolution of Brand Personification
Brands are no longer faceless entities. They have personalities, quirks, and even senses of humour. Successful companies like Ryanair, Monzo, Innocent, and Duolingo have effectively used social media to humanise their brands, and this strategy is translating to increased brand awareness.
Ryanair’s TikTok Takeover
Ryanair, known for its low-cost airline services, has taken to TikTok with a fresh and humorous approach. Their TikTok channel is filled with entertaining content, from flight stereotypes all the way to laugh about people who clap when the plane lands (understandably). They also understand that they are a low-budget airline, and with low-budget costs, it’s not all glitz and glamour. Ryanair not only recognises this but adds a fun element towards highlighting this. This content doesn’t just promote their services; it showcases the fun side of travel and keeps their audience engaged and entertained.
Monzo’s LinkedIn Success
Monzo, a digital bank, might not be the first brand that comes to mind when you think of LinkedIn. But they’ve made a surprising impact on the platform. Their LinkedIn posts go beyond boring financial advice. Monzo creates a unique element of brand awareness and unique, relatable engagement.
Take this post, for example, although it really doesn’t resonate with the brand’s services. It does bring in a lot of genuine organic brand awareness by creating relatable and entertaining content. More brand awareness in the long run is more likely to convert people into customers.
Because who else would enjoy seeing boring posts about financial advice? It doesn’t create engagement and doesn’t really work.
Innocent Drinks Playful Engagement
Innocent Drinks are known for their playful and humorous social media presence. Innocent frequently engages in witty posts on LinkedIn, making their feed not just a marketing tool but an enjoyable space to visit.
Using this post as an example, Innocent drinks transforms their product into products suited for Gen Z. Creating funny names and even packaging relative to popular Gen Z trends and phrases. As you can see, it performed well, and everyone enjoyed seeing a post like this compared to generic, boring LinkedIn posts.
Duolingo, an app for language learning, uses quirky memes and humour to encourage users to stay engaged and consistent with their language studies.
Key Takeaways for Brands
So, what can we learn from these brands’ success on social media?
Show the funny human side of your company. Share memes, create fun & engaging content, employee stories, and day-to-day experiences.
Engage with Humour: Don’t be afraid to infuse humour into your content. People appreciate a good laugh, and it makes your brand memorable.
Consistency is Key: Be consistent in your messaging and posting. It helps build a loyal following who can rely on you for engaging content.
3. Social Media as a Search Engine
Social media platforms are not just about social interactions; they are increasingly becoming search engines in their own right. In 2024, users rely on TikTok, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube for inspiration, product discovery, and even reviews.
The Shift Towards Social Search
In the past, if you wanted to buy a new outfit, you’d visit a search engine, type in your query, and be presented with a list of websites to explore. Today, you might head to TikTok or Instagram and scroll through posts with the latest fashion trends.
TikTok as an Inspiration Hub
TikTok has become an inspiration hub for fashion, travel, and lifestyle. Users follow influencers and brands to discover new trends and products. Many purchases are directly influenced by what people see on their TikTok For You Page.
Pinterest for Discovery
Pinterest has long been a platform for discovery, but it’s even more critical in 2024. It’s a go-to platform for users looking for ideas – whether it’s home decor, recipes, or wedding planning. Users can search for pins related to their interests, making it a powerful tool for brands in these niches.
YouTube & TikToks for Reviews and Tutorials
YouTube is not just a platform for cat videos and funny compilations; it’s a go-to place for in-depth product reviews and tutorials. Users turn to YouTube to see products in action, learn how to use them, and make informed decisions before purchasing in a long video format. TikTok has done this similarly recently but in shorter form content.
Optimising for Social Search
For businesses, it’s crucial to optimise their content and profiles for this new search behaviour. This includes:
Use Relevant Keywords: Incorporate relevant keywords into your social media profiles and content to increase discoverability.
Create Quality Content: Ensure that your content is not only visually appealing but also informative and engaging with a strong hook.
Leverage Hashtags: Use relevant and trending hashtags to make your content more visible to users searching for specific topics.
Try Not to focus too much on the most popular trending hashtags; these prove very popular and extremely competitive.
Find Niche Hashtags that relate to a trending hashtag, and you might find yourself competing with fewer brands.
Encourage User Reviews and Testimonials: Encourage your customers to leave reviews and testimonials on your social media profiles. These user-generated reviews can influence potential buyers.
Incorporating these strategies can help your business take advantage of social media’s growing role as a search engine.
4. Generative AI
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is increasingly becoming integral to content creation and marketing. In 2024, Generative AI is at the forefront, revolutionising personalisation, chatbots, and content generation. We’re even starting to see generative video assets take some popularity now.
The Rise of Generative AI
Generative AI refers to AI systems that generate content based on input data, such as text, images, or videos. It’s poised to transform how businesses interact with their audience and create content.
Generative AI is being used to deliver personalised content experiences to users. Imagine a real-time website that adapts its content based on a user’s preferences and behaviours. This level of personalisation enhances user experience and drives engagement and conversions.
Chatbots and Customer Service
AI-powered chatbots are becoming more sophisticated, providing instant responses to customer inquiries and streamlining customer service processes. Businesses are utilising chatbots to handle routine inquiries, particularly via social media. Leaving us humans to deal with more complex issues (thanks AI!). This saves time and ensures a consistent and efficient customer service experience.
Generative AI can be used to create content at scale. For instance, AI can write articles, generate social media posts, or even create video scripts. While AI content creation is not a replacement for human creativity, it can assist in content production, saving time and resources. Heck, this blog might also have been assisted by AI!
Incorporating Generative AI into Your Strategy
To harness the power of Generative AI in your social media strategy, consider the following steps:
Understand Your Audience: Use AI to gain deeper insights into your audience’s preferences and behaviours.
Implement Personalisation: Tailor your content to individual users based on their preferences. As well as automating tone of voice appropriate towards particular social media platforms.
Chatbot Integration: Consider implementing chatbots for customer service and engagement.
Experiment with AI-Generated Content: Experimentation is important, particularly with AI-generated content. It’s there to see how it can enhance your content creation process. AI is here to be an additional source; it’s always best practice to enhance your skills by adding AI content.
5. Raw Content – “Day in the Life,” “Meet the Team,” etc.
The trend of sharing unpolished, authentic moments on social media is rising. In 2024, viewers are looking for the real, unfiltered experiences behind the brands they follow. “Day in the life” and “Meet the team” content offers a glimpse behind the curtain, helping to build a deeper connection with your audience.
Authenticity stands out in a world inundated with highly polished and edited content. Raw content gives your audience a behind-the-scenes look at your business, showing the human side of your brand.
The reality is that we, as customers and consumers, enjoy seeing the faces behind the brand. It gives a sense of connection and adds to the storytelling aspect of content. SELL, SELL & SELL! doesn’t work. It just simply deters a customer.
“Day in the Life” Content
“Day in the life” content takes your audience through a typical day at your company. This could include a day in an employee’s life, a behind-the-scenes look at your manufacturing process, or a office tour. It provides transparency and helps customers understand your brand better.
“Meet the Team” Content
“Meet the team” content introduces your audience to the faces behind your brand. Share the stories and personalities of your employees. This personal connection fosters trust and loyalty among your audience.
There are plenty more ideas for this style of content. It’s meant to be natural and personable, and the opportunities are endless.
If it helps, we have just released a 2024 Social Media Calendar to help you target audience and industry-specific dates for your brand’s content.
Key Takeaways for Raw Content
To make the most of raw content in your social media strategy:
Perfect doesn’t exist, and that’s okay (in my opinion). Don’t be afraid to show the unpolished, real moments that make your brand unique.
Transparency and authenticity are essential for building trust with your audience.
Showcase your team.
Highlight the people behind your brand. Let your team’s personalities shine through.
Tell Your Story!!
I can’t highlight this part enough; you are unique! Your brand is unique! Your team is unique; show it off!
Use raw content to tell your brand’s story, its values, and what sets it apart.
Social Media Trends 2024 – Conclusion
In conclusion, 2024 promises to be an exciting year for social media, filled with opportunities for businesses and brands to connect with their audience in new and engaging ways. By embracing these trends, you’ll be well-prepared to navigate the evolving social media landscape and ensure your brand stays relevant and appealing.
Stay ahead of the curve, embrace authenticity, and don’t be afraid to show the world who you really are. These trends will not only define 2024 but also shape the future of social media marketing. Are you ready to take your social media strategy to the next level?
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