Social media is becoming more important than ever. The medium has always been a powerful tool for marketers and this is set to continue in 2021. The pandemic has caused an unprecedented change in how the majority of consumers use social media, with as many as half of people reporting that they have spent more time on social media due to COVID-19. 

The pandemic has left marketers turning to social media with the aim of achieving short-term ROI, whilst also building loyalty amongst their followers. Marketing professionals including Ajab Samrai believe that the uptick in social media usage caused by recent events present a huge number of new opportunities. 

Not every social media trend from 2020 has been positive. This year saw the issue of fake news brought to the forefront due to misinformation surrounding the pandemic. 

Conversational Marketing 

Brands can no longer expect success by simply shouting their message online and hoping for the best. Instead, brands will succeed by establishing a conversation with their audience and using this conversation to build genuine engagement and lasting relationships. 

Tools such as chatbots, live-streaming platforms and social media are all great ways that marketers can build authentic relationships with their audience while showing the human side of their organisation.  

Platform and Content Diversification 

This year has seen some huge changes in the world of social media, and these changes will influence 2021’s social media trends. March 2020 saw TikTok peak with nearly 76 million downloadsTiktok has given celebrity and amateur creators a platform to share user-generated short videos that are proving extremely popular with its audience. 

Following this success, August saw Instagram roll out Reels; a change that gave influencers, brands, and individuals the ability to create and post short videos. To help brands stay relevant, marketers will need to invest in new platforms or ones they may have previously avoided, such as TikTok. 

Social Content for Good 

This year has seen an ever-growing focus on political, environmental, and social issues, and this is sure to carry forward into 2021. This year has seen giants of the business world such as Nike, Disney and Ben & Jerry’s sharing educational content about the Black Lives Matter movement and the pandemic.  

In fact, social media consumers in 2021 will begin to expect a human approach from brands. They will be hunting for meaningful content that they can share to educate others. Brands might find themselves criticised for lack of action if they have a defined opinion on one of these issues, but do not act on it.