As another year of Elon Musk outbursts, Duolingo TikTok’s and Meta Business Suite meltdowns ends, we’re looking ahead to 2024 and predicting some key trends that we think will take centre stage on social media.
Let’s take a peep into our crystal ball (and trusty analytics tools) to decipher the social media trends that will be hitting our screens faster than a dog video going viral.
Buckle up, it’s going to be a wild ride…
Bid Adieu to the Unhinged Era
Remember when corporate accounts went rogue, embracing the ‘admin is running the show’ vibe? Well, the honeymoon is over. The thrill has faded, and what was once authentic and had shock value, now feels strategic. That’s mainstream for you, it’s not cool if your mum gets it.
Lesson learned from the boohoo, Nella Rose debacle – sometimes, too much ‘unhinged’ can leave consumer feeling confused, wondering why their favourite clothing brand is commentating on reality TV. With the now departed I’m a Celeb star at the centre of debate on Twitter (or X or whatever it’s called these days), boohoo’s admin let their followers show how they felt on the company account. This led to many of their followers calling out the brand for ‘jumping on the hate train’ and highlights one of the key issues around the ‘admin running the account’ trend…
Do followers of fast-fashion clothing brands need to know what they think all the time?
Yes, having a brand personality on social media is good, but when it goes too far in trying to be relatable and quirky, it can leave many consumers feeling alienated and not spoken for, or spoken down to. What it really comes down to, is authenticity. Don’t fake Santa your way into quirkiness.
We think brands will have to dial it back a notch in 2024.
Platforms will begin to embrace generative AI
Enter the era of AI-powered content creation! We believe major social media platforms will begin to embrace AI into its features to allow for easier and more creative content creation.
We always like to bring it back to “What do social media platforms want you, as a consumer, to do?”
The answer is, spend as much time on their platform as possible. If you’re on their platform for longer, their ad space becomes more attractive to advertisers, which makes them more profitable.
In order to keep your attention, the platforms need content creators. We’ve already seen platforms like TikTok and Instagram improve their features when it comes to editing content natively on the platform, to make content more diverse and interesting to audiences.
According to Hootsuite, there has been a 260% increase in how many organisations plan to use AI for editing images in 2024. Given that platforms want you to edit in app (and reward your posts for doing so), integrating AI into their features seems like an obvious move.
Generative AI could be the wizard behind the curtain, making our lives easier and content creation a breeze. So, brace yourselves, the robots are here to make your content shine brighter than your mate’s, aunt’s, cousin’s Turkey teeth.
Businesses Turn to Creators
The era of User-Generated Content (UGC) will continue to reign, but with a twist…
It’s no secret how important UGC has become in the social media landscape, with 67% of Gen Z preferring to see real people in social media ads and are more inclined to engage with them.
Consumers don’t like feeling like they’re being sold to on social media, so the less an advert feels like an advert, the better. Let’s face it, people want authenticity, not another corporate ad clogging up their feed.
More brands are leaning towards the ambassador influencer model, and some are already experimenting with running ads through the creator’s account. We think it’s only a matter of time until more businesses catch on and trial this approach with their own paid advertising strategy.
X Won’t Be Axed
Honestly, Twitter/X could make up an entire article.
With so much controversy around the platform and Elon Musk’s recent radical changes, many have predicted the demise of Twitter/X. Business accounts have struggled over the last few years on the platform, but the ones who have won, have won big.
We think it’s here to stay. To put it simply, there isn’t another platform like Twitter/X. Threads has tried, but after the initial excitement of its launch, it’s failed to reach the heights most were expecting.
Twitter/X remains the morning coffee of the digital world. On average, Twitter is still one of the first apps people open when they use their phone. People are still using the platform as their go-to place to find out what’s happening and how people are reacting to it.
This year, the platform also introduced its ‘For you’ feed, giving users the option to consume on the platform chronologically or via an algorithm driven feed. This has resulted in users spending longer on the platform as they are no longer ‘running out’ of tweets.
It’s features like this that changed the game for platforms like Instagram, and we think it will have the same effect for Twitter/X.
The Search Party Continues
Many social media users are now searching on social media rather than Google or other search engine platforms.
The maths adds up. People are on their phones more. When on their phones, people spend most of their time on social media. If someone wants to find something out, rather than leaving the app they are on, opening Safari or Google, typing their query in, and finding a website that answers their question; it’s far quicker to just type the query into whichever social media platform they are on. Most of the time, consumers will find the answer much quicker and in a more engaging way (videos/photos rather than lots of text that you need to skim to find the answer).
But why is the time it takes important? Because as a society we have much lower attention spans than humans have historically. If we can’t find something out quickly, we are much more likely to just give up and try again another time.
Gen Z is using platforms to find everything from a cozy eatery to the perfect shade of lipstick. Your posts need to be ‘search rich’ – because if your content isn’t showing up when they search, it’s like you’re the last one picked for the dodgeball team.
So where do you think social media will take us in 2024? Do you agree/disagree with anything listed above? Let us know why, we love talking about our industry and knowing social media, any changes to the landscape of social media will be overshadowed by a world record breaking egg anyway…
And, as always, if you’re looking to freshen up your social media accounts, get in touch with our Head of Social today.