Keeping pace with social media seems like an unmanageable task some days. After all, how does one perfect a marketing strategy when new trends spring up or begin to rise in popularity every once in a while. Additionally, the makeup of your online audience is constantly changing, too.
This summer, figure out how to plan your social media marketing campaign by looking at these upcoming trends.
One of the easiest ways to tie into summer activities is to first look at major holidays — Memorial Day and Fourth of July, for example. Next, look at major national and global events, such as the Summer Olympics or big festivals. Then, you can piggyback off the marketing for these events by tying into a hashtag or running specials of your own during the same timeframe. Expect to see summer marketing tie into various summer events, both in the specials offered and hashtags used.
In the recent years, businesses have come to recognize the value of local SEO. Tie into local events to gain more traffic to your site. For example, if there is a popular festival in your area, can you rent a small booth and then share images on social media of the event? Perhaps there is a famous artist headed to your area for a concert, and you name a sandwich in your restaurant after him. Figure out how to reach people on a local level and drive them to your brick-and-mortar stores.
Summer equals beautiful weather, and people are excited to get outdoors and experience life. For summer 2018, this means a lot of different events. You can take advantage of local events by creating a Snapchat geofilter and including your snaps at events to engage current customers and connect new ones.
Even though big, beautiful images are not a new trend, they are worth mentioning because they are such a vital part of any social media marketing campaign. Across the board, social media posts with images tend to get shared more often than other types of posts without images. On Twitter, a post with an image is about 150% more likely to be retweeted.
Millennials, in particular, prefer emoji, GIFs, and stickers over words and relate to them better. If you want to reach people in this age range, expressing yourself on social media with these icons is a smart move. Expect to see brands tie images into their posts in new ways. Instead of lengthy posts, you might just see a happy-face emoji combined with a symbol for money to symbolize a store that’s having a flash sale, for example.
Summer means the kids are out of school and looking for engaging brands, and brands are looking to engage them. Vodafone clearly sees generation Z and millennials as key to growing their mobile carrier service globally, as evidenced by their Instagram posts including plenty of GIFs.
Some companies have jumped onto social causes and are engaging in marketing strategies with a cause. For example, Adidas used Lean In to help promote gender pay equality with their #20PercentCounts campaign.
The campaign encourages employers to look at pay levels within their companies and to close the gap so pay is equal based on experience rather than gender. Summer brings time with family and awareness of the struggles family members’ face, so expect to see more companies adopting causes in the summer of 2018 and beyond. Marks and Spencer adopted the cause of breast cancer, and they share similar images on their Instagram account along with pink-themed photos.
There are a lot of serious issues in the world, but when summer hits, people want to have fun and enjoy the warmer weather. Lightheartedness seems to be well received on most social media platforms and was trending in the first quarter of 2018, which can be expected to continue into summer. Summer equals fun, so expect to see fun posts from brands in the summer of 2018. Budweiser taps into this trend with their Snapchat posts that feature elements such as festival food and a bottle of their beer.
Each new season brings new challenges and new trends in social media marketing. The key to a successful social marketing season is looking at the bigger picture and not being afraid to try new ideas. These trends are an excellent source of ideas for your social media marketing calendar so don’t overlook the value of staying up to date on current hashtags and trending topics online.