The top trends that will shape social media in 2017 (Part 2)

In 2017, is there any room for more in-app innovation for video content?

Welcome to the second post in our two-part series looking at which trends might shape social media marketing campaigns in the year ahead. Part One covered VR/AR, paid advertising and the continuing trend of increased personalisation of content. In Part Two, we cover the growth potential that remains for video content, the changes Google’s ‘mobile first’ indexing might make to your website ranking as well as a couple of other key social media trends set to emerge in 2017.

Video and more

Video was one of the biggest winners for social media platforms in 2016 with Facebook and Twitter continuing their push into live streaming with Facebook Live and Twitter’s Periscope live streaming service. YouTube Live has also recently been launched. Instagram Stories was a direct copy of Snapchat’s successful stories earlier this year, so expect these types of features to expand and evolve was in 2017.

Video consistently delivers higher engagement than other formats, so it’s not surprising that this is where platforms are focussing their attention. According to Facebook, there was a four-fold increase in the number of users broadcasting via Facebook Live over the past 12 months. In 2017, it may not be beyond our wildest dreams to expect to see Facebook and perhaps Twitter team up with an established broadcaster that will allow users to tune into their favourite news programme, live on Facebook.

Another video prediction for 2017 is the continued uptake of Facebook’s 360 videos and photos. Closely linked to the trend for innovative VR/AR content that we discussed in Part 1 of the series, Facebook is already working on new ways everyday users can create their own 360 content. While attracting attention in the Facebook Newsfeed continues to get more and more challenging – and expensive, it’s widely predicted that Facebook will be boosting posts that feature 360 content.

Mobile first

We haven’t yet reached peak mobile, but it’s no secret that more and more users are consuming online content via their mobile devices rather than desktop PCs, so much so that Google has announced changes to the way they will index website content. The move to ‘mobile first’ indexing which will use the mobile view of a website’s content rather than the desktop view. This has potentially big SEO consequences for brands that don’t have responsive websites. Expect to see the difference ‘mobile first’ indexing makes in 2017.

Disappearing content

Snapchat was a key feature of social media in 2016 and one of its key USPs was the auto-expire feature of its snaps. Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp have all introduced some new ‘SnapChat-like’ features during the later half of 2016 in a bid to stem the flow of users deserting their platforms in favour of Snapchat. Content expiry also encourages users to ‘post-in-the-moment’ to create more spontaneous, engaging content.

With data storage and security also an issue bubbling away in the background, expect content expiry to move across onto other social media platforms in 2017.

Greater variety of Artificial Intelligence (AI)

In 2016, we all got a lot more familiar with how Artificial Intelligence can help us in our everyday activities such as finding a phone number or sending a text message. In 2017, expect to see Siri and Google Assistant be joined by some new AI friends. So-called ‘Chatbots’ such as Siri are going to be popping up on the websites and in the customer services departments of major brands as more and more people start feeling comfortable conversing with robots to book holidays, make calls, manage your calendar and even find and read your emails.

At iFactory, keeping a finger on the pulse of the social media landscape is part of our core business. Our digital solutions, including social media marketing and digital strategy as well as website design, development and support, will help your business thrive in the digital space, today and tomorrow. Now is a great time to contact us.


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