Social media for business purposes has been a main staple of marketing for many years now. As each new trend and each new platform is released, companies have scrambled to be at the forefront. Over the years we have seen many success stories and many disasters come of social media, but the fact is it isn’t going to go away. Truth be told, social media advertising budgets have doubled over the past 2 years and ad spending has ballooned to roughly $35 billion this year, according to Hootsuite.
The future of social media will likely require marketers to rethink their current strategy. The move toward instant, in the moment news feeds, augmented reality, and posts that will disappear after 24 hours are changing the way we view social media. Businesses will have to become adept at following these trends if they want to stay in the game.
Snapchat is for posting stories in the moment. Companies are gaining widespread fandom with Sponsored Selfie Filters and lenses. Disney, W Hotels, Starbucks, and McDonald’s are just a few brands that have seen major success with Snapchat. The popularity of Snapchat has spurred Facebook and Instagram to enable similar concepts to their existing platforms with Facebook Live, Facebook Stories, Instagram Live and Instagram Stories. These new upgrades to the platforms we are already familiar with are essentially jumping on the Snapchat bandwagon. They are integrating the best of Snapchat, and capitalizing on its popularity.
One of the major features of Snapchat is Augmented Reality (AR). “Augmented Reality is a live direct or indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented by computer-generated sensory input such as sound, video, graphics or GPS data.” (Wikipedia). Businesses are seeing the benefits of AR already with concepts like customers being able to see how new furniture will look in their existing space. Ikea has been doing this for some time now and are set to release an app for it later this year. Designing the construction of a new house on an empty lot is much easier with AR, as is making minor repairs around the house or on the family car. Companies can use AR technology for inventory, ordering, shipping, as well as conference calling and boardroom functions. There’s no telling where Augmented Reality will take us, but I for one am enjoying the ride:
Lessons for Others
It is easy to see that the future of social media is wide open for businesses. With the extreme speed that we are seeing technological advances, there is no way to know for sure what the social landscape will look like in the years to come. We can tell for sure, though, that if a business wants to stay relevant, they will need to keep up with the ever changing trends of social media.
Industry: Online Social
Name of Organization Contact: Not Applicable
Authored by: Julie Bond
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