Is Social Getting Anti-Social? Six Social Media Trends that are Affecting Everyone

social media trends 2018Social media marketing is touted to be in a state of chaos and disruption, although that is not true. However, we canexpect some huge changes this year, owing to the social media trends of 2017 that necessitated change in various scenarios.

Capitalize on these Social Media Trends to Protect Your Brand

Understanding social media trends is the first step in capitalizing on them. When you examine and grasp the meaning of these trends it can benefit your brand, and that’s the goal of all good marketers. Here are some major social upheavals you must be aware of.

Six Real Social Media Trends You Must Understand Today

1. Changes to Facebook News Feed

Facebook has tweaked its news feed algorithm several times over, and organic reach for many businesses has been dwindling for years. But according to recent announcements, Facebook would throttle most brand-based content in favor of more familiar people-based content from their “friends and family.” This change is owing to the fact that people are now keen to explore more private social networks that rule the mobile world, especially Snapchat and Instagram.

2. Twitter Cracks Down on Bulk Posts

Spammers and bots have been consistently attacking Twitter with troll messages and incorrect statements to push their agendas and political affiliations without any check on the content. Twitter has now planned to nip it in the bud, with its announcement that as of Feb 2018, Twitter users and related apps will not be able to post similar content from multiple accounts. No auto-engagements will be entertained at any scale, with no activity related to mass-liking or retweeting of posts allowed.

3. Decline of Social Sharing

Social media metrics company BuzzSumo has revealed that the average number of social shares per post has declined by a whopping 50 percent in 2017 compared to 2015, indicating that people are not as keen as before to share similar posts, since most hot topics become quickly saturated with similar content from different sources. With many social shares and links, the topmost agencies are the winners.

4. Dark Social and its Social Value

Although dark social might indicate something nefarious in terms of social sharing methods, rest assured, it is not so! “Dark social” refers to hidden content. It combines all social media & social sharing activities outside of public social media posts. The approach refers to emails, messages, forums, and even word-of-mouth publicity.

Until now, dark social has not been tracked or measured, and there was no ability to connect results to campaigns directly. Dark social is on the rise today since people are wary of the information security provided by social media sites. Much of the online sharing activity, and personal conversations, are now evidently happening in private.

5. Ad Blindness and Blocking

Paid social ads showcase an approach for brands to get to intended audiences, thus making the overall reach of the audience valuable to their business. But now trends indicate users are becoming blind to ads, and ignoring most of them! Also, consumers are now keen to block ads, and with the rise of passive ad-blocking options, they can automatically block excessive ads through their browsers.

6. Influencer Abuse

As the organic reach of social posts declined in recent times, marketers relied on influencer marketing to deliver the goods. People were keen on listening to celebrities and various “thought leaders,” and these influencers were seen as catalysts to overcome social media throttles.

However, some well-publicized scandals and tweaked stats revealed that many influencers did not really influence people as much as they claimed, with many of them relying on bots or purchased followers. This foolish behavior has reflected in the dip in popularity in their brands, too.

Social Media Trends Changing How We Market

Search engine optimization (SEO) and social media marketing have evolved over the years, but recently, the new updates as well as people’s behavioral changes have altered the nature of campaigns for real marketers. Social media channels are maturing considerably, with better benefits than ever before – but it’s up to you to keep current, use best practices, and avoid the shortcuts that can most definitely damage the brand.

Have you been avoiding the reality of these social media trends? Have another “must-know” trend to report? Get social, and share your thoughts in the comments!

Hardik Oza

Hardik Oza is an SEO Consultant with 6 years experience. He focuses on link building strategies to help companies grow their businesses. He shares his thoughts on additional publications like SEMrush, Search Engine People, and Social Media Today.

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Hardik Oza