Social media has evolved dramatically over the past few years. Long gone are the days when social media was purely used for social purposes. Today, social media has become an important channel for businesses and brands to reach their target customers and engage with existing ones. But the changes are not over yet. Social media as a platform and channel is ever changing, giving businesses and marketers new opportunities reach and engage with a captive audience.
As a small business, it’s critical to stay tuned to changes in social platforms. Unlike the old days of social media, today’s more mature platforms are providing businesses and marketers concrete ways to monetize and find ROI in social endeavors, something that was missing in the early days of social media marketing.
Staying ahead of trends, changes and opportunities is key to maximizing these platforms for business initiatives. Let’s discuss some prominent and new opportunities in some of today’s hottest platforms, Pinterest, Snapchat and YouTube, and how businesses can benefit from them.
While Pinterest was initially created as a sort of idea board platform where users could collect images of items they liked, be it home décor ideas or fashion, the platform has come a long way. With almost 50 million users, Pinterest has become the go-to platform for wedding planning, home décor and remodeling, fashion and more. Recently, the platform introduced “buyable pins” which allow users from Pinterest to purchase pins they like.
This opens a whole new opportunity to retailers to not only introduce products to users, but also get sales directly from the platform. By allowing users to purchase without leaving the app, online businesses can benefit from a new stream of sales opportunities.
Snapchat’s Video Ads
The “snap” messaging app has taken off and currently has over 100 million daily snapchatters. With a captive audience of teens to people in their early 30s, Snapchat is now offering video ads that are intended to allow brands and businesses to reach this audience. By including videos in the context of the app, the platform promises to capture the attention of users with your message.
The combination of a highly active, captive audience and video are key to the success of this new social advertising platform. For businesses that cater to a younger audience, this can be an effective method for increasing brand awareness and reaching a new audience.
An extension of their TrueView ads capabilities, YouTube now offers click-to-shop video ads that allow users to get exposed to products through ads that feature products they can purchase on the brand/manufacturer site. This comes a solution from realizing that consumers would turn from YouTube to Google to look for a retailer to purchase a product they saw featured in an ad on the platform.
Similar to Pinterest’s buyable pins, the addition of click-to-shop features within the YouTube platform offers business and brands a whole new way to attract customers and new channels for sales.
With many brands and businesses already advertising on YouTube, the addition of a shop feature is a bonus that business owners should consider.
Staying Tuned to the Future of Social Platforms
While it’s easy to get overwhelmed with existing social platforms, it’s important to tune in to the latest changes and offerings from these platforms. As times keep changing and technology and user behavior facilitate new opportunities for advertisers, marketers and businesses, everyone stands to win if reaching the right audience is always at the core.
What social media trends have you noticed? Which have helped your business grow online?