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On this subject, here is an article about the future of social media: Imagine being able to predict the next big thing on social media, knowing what social media will look like in 2017 and beyond and how will brands use social platforms to connect with their audience.
As someone who works with social media every day, this information would be invaluable.
At Buffer, we’re always eager to dig up new research into social media marketing — things like how marketers are using social media and what they’re excited about heading into 2017.
To better understand how social media marketing is changing, we collected data from over 1,200 marketers to create the State of Social Media 2016 report. The report shows us how marketers, from businesses of all sizes are approaching social media marketing.
Check out our data-packed report on the State of Social Media below, and join the conversation using #StateOfSocial16.
A handy guide to navigating what’s coming up next in the social media world.
3 Key Social Media Takeaways to Guide Your Marketing in 2017
Eighty-three percent of marketers said they’d like to create more video content if they didn’t have restraints such as time and resources. We also found that 30 percent of marketers are looking to spend more time focused on Facebook video in 2017, with 28 percent also looking to add YouTube to their marketing stack.
The takeaway: Marketers want to be making more video but can’t.
If you can find a way to create video content easily, you might be able to beat the rush!
Right now, video is hot and is standing out in the Facebook News Feed. But that won’t always be the way. As video creeps up in popularity and more and more brands and individuals are sharing it, it’ll be harder to get noticed. Eventually, brands may have to pay for video reach, just as many do already for sponsored posts and ads.
It’s possible that 2017 could be a great time to jump on and grab some attention before the video crush hits.
2. No one has left Facebook! Almost every marketer is using Facebook (93%) and Facebook ads (91%). 🏆
Our report found that 93 percent of marketers use Facebook for their business and 91 percent have also invested in Facebook Ads. Despite the drop in organic reach on Facebook, 72 percent of respondents said their use of Facebook has stayed the same or increased over the past 12 months.
The takeaway: Facebook is worth figuring out.
Do you have a bit of budget? With the huge potential audience, marketers are keen to put money behind their Facebook content.
And if you’re going the free route: What can you do to stand out? At Buffer, we try our best to follow folks who are doing incredible, unusual things on social, hoping some of their inspiration rubs off. Here’s a good list to start with.
3. Only 1 in 5 respondents use social media for customer support 💁
One of the most surprising pieces of information we found from the survey is that just 21 percent of businesses listed customer support as a reason they use social media.
The takeaway: Delight your customers by using social for support. You’ll be ahead of the game!
With more and more customers turning to social media channels for support issues, it feels like there’s still great opportunity for businesses, individuals and solopreneurs to stand out and build advocacy by providing outstanding support on social. At Buffer, we believe in the power of great customer support, no matter where the customer is, which is why we’ve launched Respond as a social media customer service tool. There are other great options out there as well: Twitter’s native customer service features, Facebook page messages, and more.
About the State of Social Media survey and data
For this report, we surveyed over 1,200 marketers (1,252 to be precise) from businesses of all sizes. You can view a more detailed breakdown on the data at the bottom of this post.
The Key Social Media Objectives and Challenges for 2017
Over the past half-decade, social media marketing has become incredibly important for businesses of all sizes. But why are marketers using social media? In this section of the report, we’d love to share how marketers might answer that question.
Objective: Businesses are on social media primarily for brand awareness.
Surprisingly, only 1 in 5 businesses (21%) said they use social media for customer support.
The most popular reason for using social media among those surveyed was brand awareness (85%), followed by community engagement (71%). Among all the great reasons to be on social media — awareness, community, distribution, lead-gen — customer support was the only factor that was chosen by fewer than 50 percent of brands. And it was significantly less!
Here’s the full breakdown:
Challenge: More than half of marketers are keen to figure out how to drive traffic from social media.
Fifty-eight percent of marketers said that driving traffic to their website was one of their main social media challenges, followed by generating leads (49%).
Measurement and ROI continue to present problems for a large percentage of marketers, too, with 42% of our respondents listing it as a challenge they’re facing.
How marketers are using social media platforms: 10 insights you need to know
1. Facebook is still the leading platform for marketers (93% of businesses use Facebook)
Facebook is the leading platform for marketers with 93% saying their business is actively using it. Twitter was close behind with 89% of respondents saying they use the platform for their business.
Other channels respondents use include – Google+ (42%), Pinterest (35%), Facebook video (29%), Messaging Apps (16%), Snapchat (12%), Medium (10%), Quora (5%), Vine (3%).
2. Marketers are beginning to abandon Google+ (27% said they’ll use Google+ less in 2017)
Our survey results show that Google+ is the channel most marketers feel they will invest less time in over the next 12 months (27% of respondents). Twitter followed up in second with 23%.
Other channels respondents said they’ll move away from in 2017 include – Instagram (11%), Snapchat (9%), YouTube (9%), Messaging Apps (8%), Facebook video (6%), Quora (6%), Medium(6%).
3. Facebook video is a priority for marketers in 2017 (30% of marketers want to invest more in Facebook video)
Multimedia content appears to be top of mind for many marketers as they look ahead to 2017, with many marketers believing video will help them win in the future.
Facebook video came out top of the pile here, with 30% of respondents saying it’s on their radar for 2017, closely followed by YouTube (28%), Instagram (26%), and Snapchat (22%). All four of these platforms focus on video and visual content, which seems to point at marketers focused on more multimedia content in 2017. The inclusion of YouTube so prominently in these results is telling also, as it doesn’t get mentioned as often in the discussion of up-and-coming video options (though is clearly top-of-mind for a lot of marketers).
Other channels respondents plan to add to their marketing strategy include – Pinterest (15%), LinkedIn (14%), Twitter (13%), Messaging Apps (11%), Medium (11%), Google+ (10%), Quora (6%).
4. Facebook’s decline in organic reach isn’t scaring away marketers (72% of marketers use Facebook the same amount or more that the previous 12 months)
Despite Facebook organic reach continuing to drop over the past year, the majority of businesses are still actively using the platform: 46% of respondents said that their use of Facebook has stayed the same, with 26% saying they now share more content despite the drop in reach and 28% said they now post less.
5. Businesses are adapting to Facebook as a pay-to-play channel (91% of marketers have invested in Facebook ads)
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