The social media landscape is always changing, with new features, platforms and trends appearing every year. As 2023 draws to an end, it's time to think about the major changes and look forward to what 2024 holds. Let us all go down memory lane and remember fascinating social media trends that have influenced 2023, along with some predictions for the upcoming year.
#1: The rise of video content
The popularity of video content has grown significantly in recent years, and in 2024, this trend is expected to continue growing. Millions of people worldwide have been drawn to short-form videos, thanks to their explosive rise in popularity on platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels. These platforms are being used by brands and influencers to interact with their audience, promote their products and increase conversions.
We anticipate seeing even more platforms implement video-focused features in 2024, enabling users to share engaging content and creative expression. The rise of interactive videos, vertical formats and live streaming will give companies and content producers new ways to engage with their target market. To stand out in the crowded social media landscape, marketers must invest in video production, storytelling and video optimisation techniques.
#2: Social commerce
The integration of social media with e-commerce has been increasing, and this trend is here to stay. In 2023, social media sites like Facebook and Instagram launched a number of services, like shoppable photos and, in TikTok’s case, in-app checkout, to make online buying more convenient. Thanks to these capabilities, users may find and buy things without ever leaving the social media network.
By 2024, social commerce will have advanced to a point where platforms are offering businesses more features and tools to sell directly to their customers. It is anticipated that augmented reality (AR) technology will be incorporated into the buying process, enabling customers to visually try on items or see how they might appear in their actual surroundings. Furthermore, social media companies might release more comprehensive analytics and data insights to support companies in refining their social commerce plans and gauging the success of their advertising efforts.
#3: Influencer marketing evolution
Influencer marketing has transformed the way brands reach and engage with their target audiences. In 2023, we saw a shift toward micro-influencers and nano-influencers who have smaller but highly engaged followings. This trend will likely continue in 2024, with brands focusing on building authentic connections with niche communities.
As influencer marketing becomes more prevalent, we can expect increased transparency and regulations to ensure genuine collaborations and protect consumers from deceptive practices. Social media platforms may introduce more stringent guidelines for influencers and brands, requiring clear disclosures of sponsored content and endorsements. Influencer marketing will also become increasingly data-driven, with firms using sophisticated analytics to pinpoint the ideal influencers for their campaigns and precisely calculate return on investment (ROI).
#4: Augmented reality (AR) experiences
Augmented reality has opened up exciting possibilities in the world of social media. In 2023, platforms like TikTok and Instagram integrated AR filters and lenses, allowing users to transform their photos and videos into immersive experiences. These AR features have not only enhanced user engagement but also provided new avenues for brands to create interactive and memorable experiences.
In 2024, we anticipate further advancements in AR technology, enabling users to try on products virtually, participate in gamified experiences and explore branded AR content. Social media platforms will invest in AR development tools and provide more accessible ways for businesses to create their AR experiences. This will open up new opportunities for brands to showcase products, create unique storytelling experiences and drive user engagement.
#5: Authenticity and transparency
Consumers are increasingly demanding authenticity and transparency from brands on social media. In 2023, we witnessed a growing emphasis on genuine connections, real experiences and ethical practices. This trend will only intensify in 2024, as users become more discerning about the content they consume and the brands they support.
Businesses must prioritise transparency, have meaningful interactions and match their values with those of their target audience if they want to remain relevant. It will be imperative for brands to embrace a real and human-centric strategy that highlights the individuals behind the brand, disseminates behind-the-scenes content and actively solicits and acts upon audience input. Furthermore, in order to acquire and retain the trust of their followers, brands must be open and truthful about their sustainability initiatives, social impact programs and data handling procedures.
#6: Privacy and data protection
Social media users are experiencing significant concerns about data protection and privacy. As a result, platforms are improving user privacy and giving users greater control over their personal data. More advancements in privacy features, like better data encryption, more transparent privacy regulations and easier-to-use settings, are anticipated in 2024.
To win back user trust and keep an environment that is safe for users to use, social media businesses will keep making data protection their top priority. Furthermore, in order to give users greater control over their data and build a more transparent and safe social media environment, decentralised social media platforms that make use of blockchain technology may become more popular.
#7: Niche and interest-based communities
Like-minded people have always been able to interact and share interests on social media. 2023 saw a rise of niche societies focused on particular interests, passions and causes. In 2024, platforms that enable interactions within these communities through specialised groups, forums and hashtags will be key players in this trend.
Through participation in these communities, brands will be able to interact with highly targeted audiences and form deep connections. Brands can produce customised content and campaigns that effectively connect with their target audience by comprehending the distinct requirements and inclinations of these groups. Gaining credibility and trust in these specialist communities will also require working with micro-influencers and community leaders.
The year of social media looks exciting in 2024
As we say goodbye to 2023, we can look forward to an exciting year ahead for social media in 2024. In order to connect, participate, and prosper in the digital world of 2024, it will be a must for people, businesses and marketers to embrace the trends and stay current with the changing social media landscape. Plus, these trends will also set brands apart from the competition.
Here’s to an exciting and transformative year ahead!