Online users are smarter these days. They install ad blocks in advance to stop your ads from getting in their heads. They know how to avoid ads on top of Google page. Gaining their trust is more challenging than ever.

Then, which online choices are businesses left to generate leads?

Obviously, creating content for social media.

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Oh so simple…

Still, businesses often complain about not getting enough leads. Startups can’t even reach to a handful of users. Fewer likes and zero comments are not getting anywhere. In fact, those who hit the target in 2018 or previous years are struggling to find their next customer.

On the other hand, every now and then, we see new brands rising from the ground with a new idea or a unique marketing strategy – leaving old brands behind to guess what did they do differently.

What is it the new have while the old forget?

Trends.

Every successful brand follows a trend, that’s why they are successful in the first place.

No matter, if you got the master degree in social media marketing. You still have to adopt new trends, learn new strategies, and upgrade your tactics to keep the flow of leads going.

Here is your upgraded package of Social Media Marketing Trends to follow in 2019:

Age of Visuals

They are not as old as they sound. Visuals still have the power to catch many eyes. The demand of visual content is growing with the rise of social media networks like Instagram, Facebook, and Tik Tok.

Talking about myself, I rarely see an article on social media networks. Social networks are always full of videos and images. Audios like podcasts are also on the way, but they are still growing and holding the spot behind visuals.

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So, if you want to generate leads via content, make sure visual content is a part of your strategy. Otherwise, you are losing a chance to grab a big chunk of consumers.

And if you are the one not getting enough leads from visuals as well, maybe there’s a lack of creativity. Stories, videos revealing end-results of brand’s product or services, mouth-watering images, eye-catching environment, etc., are some popular visuals grabbing instant attention of users.

Transparency

Recently, I was reading about the struggles of U.S. Poultry farmers. Their problem was consumers look at them as factories keeping chickens in cages and building products. The only solution they got is to tell a story on how they raise chickens, how much healthy their chickens are, and the whole production process. Once they got the word out on social media via their stories, they won more trust among users and more clients as a reward.

This is called Transparency – sharing your business to the extent including culture, values, production, etc.

As I said earlier, trust is the key issue. But you can build it easily if you unveil where your product comes from, how it is made, who your leaders are, and culture of your company. No one dares to deny a big organization full of people working hard on making products or offering services.

Seasonal Promotion

On Mother’s day, all social media was filled with tons of advertisements revealing what to buy for your mother on this special day. There comes Valentine’s Day, father’s day, and others too. Users celebrate these days more on social media than in real life. It’s a big mistake not to take advantage of such opportunities.

On every special day, big brands run a campaign which is relevant to the special day as well as their brand. I saw some ads of Shoppers’ Stop, an e-commerce business, on mother’s day where they were giving some suggestions on outfits, from their brands, made for mothers.

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I liked the combination of emotions, special day advertisement, and brand’s display.

Special days will never go old. Just keep track on which days hold more emotional value than others. Create and promote content accordingly.

Cross Branding

More effective than mother’s day was the promotion of Avengers: End Game and last season of Game of Thrones. The craze for both was visible in every corner of the world. Users were going crazy on social media with tons of questions and assumptions for the movie and series. Smart brands like Flipkart, HotStar, Tinder, KFC, etc., knew well on how to jump on the bandwagon.

Big brands generated tons of memes and tag lines under the name of GOT. One of the leading scotch whiskey brands, Johnnie Walker, stretched the marketing limits by launching a special edition whiskey named “White Walker” (name of creatures in GOT).

This is called cross-branding where two brands (GOT and Johnnie Walker here) promote each other’s products without any competitiveness.

Users get attracted easily to something which is already familiar and dear to their heart. Series like GOT and movies like Avengers is something users would love to adopt in all forms. Products with such type of marketing slip easily into users’ heart.

Keep yourself updated with what’s going in users’ world, and mingle your product with things they love.

Influencers

Where trust in paid ads is thinning, trust on influencers is fattening, day by day.

Users don’t waste a minute on those tiny winy ads which lead them to unwanted solutions to their problems. Instead, they are building trust with real humans telling them real stories. Influencers are well-playing that role. They share their exciting real stories with their followers which make them a star of social media networks. You may have noticed some stars on Instagram and Tik Tok.

Once they become popular, all they have to do is slip some brand’s story in-between their stories, and building trust towards the brand turn into a piece of cake. Reaching targeted audience becomes much quicker and easier via influencers.

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One thing you must take care of is not to approach just any influencer with a big following. Relevancy matters because of two reasons: one you will get the exact audience you are looking for, second building trust with the relevant audience is easier. For e.g. a traveler can’t promote an IT company.

Look out for influencers who relate to your business. Approach them to share your product, services, or story with their followers.

Chatbots

Customer service is the last step to convert visitors into customers. Let’s say a visitor read or saw your content, then came to your Facebook page looking for something he/she wants, and if he doesn’t find the product or service, he will easily get back to other contents of its social media network.

Of course, you have a great social media page with great content to simplify things for visitors. But often times visitors need personal guidance to give them either solution to their problem or at least show them the way to reach the solution. Chatbots are able enough to be guidance similar to humans. It’s their key role in marketing. Especially, when users are clinging to social media networks, they like to communicate with Chatbots in messages without leaving their favorite network.

As per BI Intelligence reports, 80% of businesses are planning to use chatbots by 2020.

Start inserting chatbots in your social media networks. Automate them with queries users generally ask for. You can either program them for a solution or a direction towards the solution – your next lead.

Augmented Reality

News of Facebook investing in Augmented Reality is spreading like fire. As per social media giant, Augmented Reality makes brand’s message more engaging, fun, and actionable.

Augmented Reality is an experience of the real world in digital format. For e.g. trying specs on your face online without even visiting the store. If you have ever played Minecraft Earth, you might be aware of this concept.

Right now, no big changes are taking place in Augmented Reality. But you can imagine sending message to users’ to try some specs on their face or furniture suitable at the empty space in their home or anything that relates to your brand.

It’s coming as various brands are conducting different experiments to make it work for marketing purpose. It’s advisable to be on the edge to grab the opportunity instantly.

To Conclude

You got your updated list of social media marketing trends of 2019. Conduct a few experiments with them to find out what’s working and what’s not. Make an upgraded list of strategies to survive 2019 with more leads than previous years.

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