Digital Media Trends for 2015: Q2 Update

3 Social Media Trends  For 2015 Q2 UPDATE
Since the digital marketing industry changes with the blink of an eye, it is extremely important to stay on top of the trends and adjust your marketing plan accordingly.  As we enter a new business quarter I decided to revisit my predictions in the January post, “3 Digital Media Trends for 2015“.  What you didn’t know – there were actually 5.  I saved 2 of those trends for attendees of my in person seminars.

My 5 digital media trend predictions for 2015 were:

  • Move to Mobile
  • Small Biz Gets a Big Voice with Content Creation
  • Automation
  • Big Data is Going to Drive Social Advertising
  • Shift towards Pay to Play

(Highlighted in bold were the 3 I shared on this blog).

Facebook Executives discussed most of these trends at the Facebook F8 conference at the end of March.  Other social media networks are incorporating these trends as well.  Let’s take a look at the trending topics and reveal the latest news and product updates.

Move to Mobile
Facebook has made major strides in the move towards mobile.  It is turning the Messenger app into its own platform.  Like a spin-off TV show, Messenger will improve customer/business relations.  Facebook users will be able to shop on the platform, make payments, track packages and engage with customer service.  Businesses will have the ability to send push notifications to shoppers, who allow this functionality.  Is your shirt on backorder?  A message will pop up on your mobile device when it is on its way.  Just yesterday, it was revealed they are turning Facebook Messenger into a standalone website as well.  Now you can use Messenger as an app or as its own website.

NEWSFLASH! Today, Facebook launched Messenger.com – a standalone browser-based app. Hm! Interesting! Don’t worry, you won’t be forced to use the separate app. You can still message your friends at Facebook.com. And, of course via the standalone mobile app. One possible benefit is you can now message and chat with friends, without being distracted by everything else on the main Facebook app…

Posted by Mari Smith on Wednesday, April 8, 2015

At the end of February, Google made a major announcement on Mobile Search.  On April 21, if your website is not “mobile-friendly,” your website won’t be listed in Google mobile search.  “Mobile-friendly” can be defined by having a responsive theme or template, for your website, that sizes down the content for viewing on a smaller device.  You can test here to discover if your website is mobile-friendly.  If you do not have a web designer to help you with this transition, contact me.

Small Biz Gets a Big Voice with Content Creation
Not only is the Messenger App being turned into a platform, it has a focus on user-generated content.  Facebook realized Users are sharing custom content back and forth on Messenger.  GIFs, videos and other content creation apps (40 to start with) are now connected to the platform.  Facebook is giving users the tools to create and share their own custom content with their Facebook friends through Messenger.

Instagram (owned by Facebook) just released the Layout from Instagram app.  Making it easier to create Instagram collages within their own user interface.  Before, if you wanted to create an Instagram collage, you needed to use a different app.  You still need an extra app, however this one is Instagram-approved .

“Livestream” is a hot topic in the digital media world now.  Think about sharing video (content), of what you are doing in the exact moment, to your social media network, through your phone or tablet.  There are apps that allow you to take your real-life experience and make it a digital one.  Download the Meerkat or Periscope apps and start live streaming those front row seats to a sporting event or concert to your social media network.

Automation
Immediate access to content, thanks to the internet as well as social media, has created web users who expect quick results.  Facebook has realized this and is entering the “Internet of Things” market.

Have you driven up to your house and pressed a button in your car to open your garage door?  Or perhaps you turn the lights on in your home as you are driving up the street?  Get ready to control more of these types of devices with Facebook.  Coffee pots, thermostats, nothing is safe when it comes to the Internet of Things.  Automation (and life becoming more integrated with Facebook) is on the way. (CNET)

Pinterest’s new automated process makes it even easier to pin content from the internet to your Pinterest Boards.  Their new process decreases the amount of clicks to pin content, by half.  You can view the process in this Pinterest YouTube video.

 

Big Data is going to Drive Social Advertising
Facebook is making the Messenger platform more “App Developer friendly”.  Meaning those who build apps will have more access to analytics and reporting numbers.  This data will include user demographics and how they interact with the apps.  This move will not only attract other Developers to create apps for the Messenger platform, it will also give Facebook more data and facts to analyze on how to target its advertising as well. (Facebook Newsroom)

As businesses test out the new customer service features, they will be able to analyze data of online purchases, by whom, how customers are interacting, and how to make their online shopping experience that much better.

Shift towards Pay to Play
Businesses and organizations will continue to build digital advertising into their marketing budgets and use sites like Facebook, to ensure message delivery through paid promotion.  This practice will become justified, seeing others do it, so you do it as well.  Thus further spreading the practice of paid online marketing.

All the other major social networks are trying out new features, to test their platforms, and learn from the data on how to further monetize their sites.  Facebook is just leading the pack.

These are just some of the latest Facebook F8 and other social network updates.  You can read more on what Facebook has in store here.  To stay further in touch with social media updates, sign up for my bi-weekly newsletter “Social Eyes”.

I do predict a downside to this “Facebook-opoly” or “Facebook Big Brother”.  As a social media user, how comfortable do you feel with being that reliant on Facebook and other social media sites?  I have already seen a shift of online marketers investing more in email marketing.  There are fewer games and rules to comply with in order to make sure your message is received.  Better yet they don’t need to adjust their marketing strategy every hot second.

Make sure to comment or share.  I would love to hear your thoughts on these digital marketing trends.