As we close the book on a uniquely challenging year for people and businesses alike, it’s time to look forward—and to look forward to better things! Our world has been changing, and of course the field of digital marketing has continued to evolve too. Following a prolonged period of social distancing, quarantining, and shutdowns, social media has become an even more essential tool for keeping us all connected personally and professionally. So, let’s take a look at some social media marketing trends for 2021.
By keeping up with significant social media marketing trends for 2021, your brand can more effectively use sites and apps like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Pinterest, TikTok, and others to achieve greater awareness and authority, a larger following, and more customers or clients.
So, take a look at these social media marketing trends for 2021, and start planning how your organization or personal brand will capitalize on them in the coming year.
2021 Social Media Marketing Trends
- Social commerce refers to e-commerce capabilities on social networking sites. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, online shopping experienced an even-bigger-than-anticipated boom in 2020. Amazon saw record-breaking business, but so too did other online sellers and social media shopping features. This trend will continue to grow in 2021, so it’s a smart move for brands to offer sales through Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and other social platforms that have this functionality.
- Better searchability on social media platforms is becoming a topic of conversation. This is particularly true of Instagram, which recently announced that it’s becoming more search friendly. This includes less reliance on hashtags and more dependence on the broader context of accounts in returning search results. It makes sense that other social networks will focus more on this too, so 2021 is a great time to look toward winning with this system. Keep the vast majority of posts relevant to your industry, niche, and main keywords. Be deliberate about the use of keywords in your posts. Always include relevant, keyworded captions with photos, graphics, videos, links, etc.
- Increased emphasis on social responsibility will be a powerful strategy for brands in 2021. Consumers are ever more conscious of social and environmental policies and effects of businesses, and of spending their money with ethical brands. This is true of all generations, but especially for Gen Z (also, read up on how Gen Z searches for information). But be aware that consumers are good at spotting “greenwashing” and other attempts to simply pay lip service to environmental and social causes; if you tout your social responsibility, make sure you’re being genuine, or you’re likely to face a backlash.
- More interactive communication between brands and followers is a must in 2021. Through the pandemic, social media became the front line of communication between so many more brands and their consumers. This fueled greater use of direct messaging and comment fields as a primary customer service platform. Live video replaced so many live events. Social media had to spread more messages that were previously primarily passed along in person. These sort of trends will continue to put greater emphasis on real conversations and better communication via social networks.
- Nostalgia marketing that prompts nostalgic feelings for people of a certain age flourished like never before during our lockdown lifestyle. It establishes personal connections between brands and followers, as well as a sense of togetherness among those who “get it” (which makes nostalgia marketing highly shareable). Expect this to continue being one of the major social media marketing trends for 2021. It’s usually most effective in the form of memes, so it’s time to start creating memes of your own if you don’t already do so, and of course to share relevant ones from other sources.