The Future of Social Media

The Future of Social MediaAs a marketing channel that is increasingly being utilised by businesses, what is the future of social media and what challenges do the channels themselves and businesses that use them face?

Frictionless Sharing

One certainty is that ‘frictionless sharing’ and the use of ‘social apps’ is set to increase (for example when you read an article by the Guardian through Facebook, a post stating this instantly and automatically appears in your friends’ newsfeeds, without any action from you). Facebook acknowledges its aims to become more seamless and less ‘disruptive’ with regards to sharing. However, the concern is both the invasion of privacy and the extent to which this sharing will be carried out by willing adopters, and how much will be the work of secretive apps posting at will.

Another question is how this will affect the quality of content shared. If we are bombarded with ‘news’ on what articles, songs, videos, purchases, games, photos, web pages, blogs, places etc that each and every Facebook friend has viewed, been to or engaged with, there is a risk of a low-quality information overload. Perhaps this is where we see friend grouping such as Google+ Circles and Facebook Friend Lists come to prominence?

Mobile

There is no doubt that social media’s future is married in with mobile and portable devices. As Microsoft’s Head of Digital Marketing Strategy recently exclaimed, “I’m not going to argue that mobile isn’t going to explode, because it really is”. Furthermore, a Facebook Strategy and Planning representative also recently stated that Facebook “is going to be a mobile company very shortly”, with Facebook activity being 2.5 times greater on mobiles than on desktops. Understandably, the monetisation of mobile social media is set to be furthered, with Facebook introducing Sponsored Stories to mobile shortly.

Social Media for Brands

As time goes by, it will be increasingly critical for brands’ online activities to include and embrace social media fully and innovatively, particularly with the increasing authority that social media platforms such as Google+ hold in search results. So if you haven’t already jumped on the bandwagon, now is a good time to do so – otherwise it may just leave you behind, taking your customers with it.

What do you think and what would you like the future of social media to be? Keep checking back to see what the latest developments are!

Paul Jackson

Senior Digital Marketing Consultant

With almost a decade of experience in digital marketing, both in-house and agency-side, Paul is a CIM qualified Chartered Marketer with expertise and a refreshing approach. Paul’s experience with a diverse mix of brands in a wide range of industries has allowed him to see first-hand the importance of a tailored and business-oriented approach to marketing.