Social media gurus on trends you can expect by the end of the year

Twin Design / Shutterstock

Since you can’t ignore social media completely if you want to be competitive as a brand or as a person, it’s no wonder this sector of marketing is always rapidly changing. To remain relevant, share and foster healthy conversations, stay updated on the latest news and to reach more potential users, it’s vital for ambitious professionals and leaders to evolve with the algorithms. Before 2020 arrives, there will be continuous shifts throughout Instagram, Facebook and other platforms, as predicted by these social media gurus who have been there, tweeted that:

More ways to shop via social media and our phones

Since many consumers use social media not only as a way to engage with their friends and family members, but to get inspired, social media guru and owner and CEO of Mugsy PR, Emily Taffel thinks brands will take the opportunity to sell. And by that, she means the ability to purchase items you see throughout your feed.

“Currently you can connect your shop catalog to Facebook and Instagram and shopping is a one-click process on Instagram, Facebook and more, but I see this integration becoming even deeper with more e-commerce marketing aspects being integrated into the social sites as well,” she explains.

Another venture — which could feel far-fetched currently — Taffel predicts is the ability to take a photo of something you like and instantly being able to purchase it.

“Imagine walking down the street, seeing a shirt you like on someone, taking their photo and immediately being able to visit their Instagram to purchase that shirt. As influencer marketing becomes more prevalent and social media shopping increases, I see this as the next wave,” she continues. “We are seeing the beginning of this coming to fruition, but as the technology becomes even more advanced, I truly believe this is the wave of the future.”

Half of all brands will start or think about starting a podcast of their own

One way to think about trends is to do the math. Oliver Yonchev, the U.S. Managing Director of The Social Chain crunches the numbers: 20 million active blogs, more than than 1 billion YouTube users … and yet, only 500,000 podcasts. He says when you factor in the fact that 51 percent of the population has listened to a podcast, it’s obviously a huge opportunity is only beginning.

“A podcast is a brand’s ownable, scalable, intimate stage outside of the Facebook powerhouse. With podcasting, the audience doesn’t exist in one place in the hands of just one private company- the podcast can live across multiple platforms at the same time,” he explains. “The space is going from stench to stench, as marketers look to diversify their media offerings and find new opportunities, which podcasts offer.”

Social Influence will appear on resumes and will increase salaries

Ten years ago, social media was still amping up. Five years ago, you would have never considered someone’s ‘presence’ as a reason to hire them or not. But today? Shannon Self, the founder of The Talaria Agency says follower numbers and overall reach will start to appear on resumes and be a factor within salaries.

As she explains, for two candidates that are equal in terms of qualifications, but one has a higher follower count, many companies would want to capitalize on their engagement. While this is definitely industry-specific, for many creative fields, it could become a factor in the workforce moving forward.

Instagram will decline — and shift

Though it may be a beloved app by many, Instagram has already suffered in organic reach recently, and Yonchev doesn’t see that changing anytime soon. In fact, he says brands will have to pay more to reach a community they’re invested in growing as algorithms shift. Taffel also says Instagram grid photos and ‘Insta-hubby’s’ are a thing of the past, as users are increasingly tired of filtering beyond recognition.

“People are craving more realness in their feeds and we’re seeing a shift to that. Filter-free, candid shots and raw images are trending more in analytics as we lead into the end of 2019 than photoshopped editorial pieces and we don’t see that ending anytime soon,” she adds.

Facebook Groups will provide a big opportunity for brands

Even though Yonchev shares Facebook has some platform growth challenge since audience growth has stagnated and younger generations aren’t using the social network as much, there is a silver lining for Zuckerberg’s baby: groups! Whether as a way to connect to folks in your field, have more meaningful conversations with customers or as another layer within your strategy, there is ample opportunity for this part of FB.

“Facebook is redefining the user experience to put Groups and community at the center of the platform, which presents an opportunity for brands that act quickly and start to nurture their own communities in this space,” he predicts.