It’s all about user interest in social networks, and how that translates for marketing strategy—namely, where marketers should put their time and money as they plan for 2020.
The insights within are based on search volume, in short. Trust Insights selected the most popular social platforms and learned what conversations users were having based on search terms that indicated starting or closing an account. Then, it compared the search volume of those terms and projected change in volume to pull predictions. The full methodology section of the report is very descriptive, and will definitely appeal to all of the data nerds out there. 🤓
The full report is well worth your time—but at the very least, stop and read these key takeaways before you start mapping your 2020 social media strategy.
1. People are finding “safe havens” online. And marketers aren’t allowed in.
Do you want to hear my favorite line written in a research report, ever?
“People want to spend time with people more like them, with a common interest, rather than in the general public where discourse has descended to rancorous incivility.” (Emphasis is my own.)
Can you blame ‘em? Social media is often, sadly, a cesspool of vitriol. So tons of online users are joining closed communities on social media networks like Slack and Discord. This is great for people who want to discuss specific ideas with people like them, but not great for marketers.
You see, private networks don’t often allow for URL tracking—traffic coming from a link shared in one of these groups often shows up in Google Analytics as direct traffic or no attribution, according to the report.
What’s a marketer to do? The report offers lots of helpful suggestions, but one of the most important is to get your analytics in ship-shape. Your marketing analytics processes should allow you to grab and attribute as much data as possible to help you navigate this fragmented new landscape.
2. YouTube is king.
Here’s a groundbreaking piece of knowledge: People love video.
Okay, we all knew that. But the report displays just how dominant YouTube is, and will continue to be, in the coming years.
As far as account creation search volume by year, YouTube is crushing the competition: In 2015, YouTube peaked with about 400,000 more searches than the second-highest-searched platform (Facebook), and—five years later—is projected to remain on top of even the “darling” networks like TikTok. No other social networks display this kind of longevity.
This is great news for marketers for many reasons. Unlike those private communities we talked about above, YouTube allows for extremely robust analytics—enabling marketers to build smart strategies around the platform and meet audiences where they are.
One awesome suggestion from the report to tie into your 2020 social media strategy—find the micro-influencers in your vertical on YouTube, and get placed content there. If you need to start by building a database of influencers (hint: you should), the report recommends smart tools to identify content creators in your vertical.
3. Marketing teams should know how to answer these questions.
If you’re on the marketing team, take a close look at the trends in this report and be sure you ask these questions. If the answers are unsatisfactory, your 2020 social media strategy could suffer.
- Which analytics tools are you using to analyze content and conversations online? Modern analytics tools will be key for assessing success in social media campaigns in 2020. The report lists some great examples, like Talkwalker.
- When was the last time your team trained on platforms like YouTube? This is where your paid spend should go, so is your marketing team ready to extract the types of smart insights you need?
- How do your influencer marketing techniques convert to ambassador relations? Brand ambassadors will be huge in the private “velvet rope” communities we talked about earlier. What’s your strategy?
You can start answering all of these questions with the insights in the full report, “Social Networks 2020: Where to Invest Time and Resources” from Trust Insights. Happy reading!
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