social media advertisingSocial media is a crowded place. The battle for attention spans is becoming ever more intense – and this year’s trends reflect how rapidly it’s revolving. Is your business keeping up?

 Spend, spend, spend…
Social media advertising budgets were up 60% in 2017 with more than 900 brands targeting their ads across Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest and LinkedIn. 4C Insights, a research company behind the survey, found that social media advertising is a key part of brand strategy.

Of all social media platforms, Instagram is reaping the most rewards, with more than 1 million advertisers placing ads that year in a bid to reach their customers.

This surge in interest comes from Instagram’s recent launch of its social shopping platform and Instagram stories, enabling users to be more interactive with their daily news feeds and engage online.

Instagram Stories
Although Snapchat were first on the scene to let users share short videos that automatically delete after 24 hours, its success prompted Instagram to do something similar.

With the first year of its launch, Instagram Stories has seen views of more than 20 million a day and counting, proving a bigger success than Snapchat. It’s predicted than more than half of all Instagram users will be using it by the end of 2018.

This means that brands need to acquaint themselves closely with Instagram to connect with customers and broaden their reach.

Social media influencers will not be ignored
If you haven’t heard of the likes of Zoella, then where have you been? Gone are the days of traditional PR where brands would hire a celebrity from the tabloids, TV or film to endorse products. Now, the celebs create themselves.

This new age of social media influencers means they have a wider reach to customers than ever before, and brands are set to invest in them to endorse and advertise their brands which can deliver 11 times more ROI than other digital marketing.

As many as 49% of people say they rely on social media influencers for their purchasing decisions, according to Adweek.

The rise of live streaming and social media video
Already popular, this will grow and grow as more advances in technology become available. Its impact for advertising is growing on businesses eager to make the most of its full potential.

Big budgets for social video advertising grew 130% in 2017, and will no doubt increase this year. Brands compete to produce more relevant video content for their audiences in order to get noticed.

Generation Z are now coming of age
Gen Z are the millenials’ little siblings, born between the late 90s to early 00s.

Unlike previous generations, Generation Z are the first to grow up 100% online, and are 2-3 times more likely to be influenced by social media alone than by price discounts.

This generation is valuable when it comes to social media advertising because of their increasing buying power. Social media investments will shift to Gen Z-favoured platforms like Snapchat and Instagram.

Personalised content is the way forward
This is a massive trend on social media and both Millenials and Gen Z are a lucrative market for brands looking to capitalise on producing customized and relevant content.

These two generations are especially known for their mistrust of traditional advertising such as billboards and print ads, meaning tailored social media content is a must for all brands. This means blogs and articles are set to surge as a means of ‘personalised’ advertising.