The Biggest Changes in Social Media Marketing in 2019

The death of organic reach on Instagram and Facebook

  • In 2018 Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook would reduce the organic reach of brands, businesses and blogs
  • The new Facebook algorithm favored posts from friends and family
  • To be fair, the organics demise didn’t really start 12 months ago. It began a few years ago as a flood of marketers really started to overwhelm the space and the business matured
  • In 2017 alone, Facebook engagement dropped by 20%. for branded posts
  • Facebook ads are still more than a viable way to reach your target audience
  • Instagram seems to follow Facebook’s monetization path
  • More and more brands and users report a decrease in organic reach
  • Instagram started actively restricting the reach of accounts that violate the Community Guidelines (read more about the Instagram shadowban here)

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Instagram cracking down on automation

  • The last Instagram algorithm changes tackled one of the biggest problems of the platform: Bots
  • What does that mean? Less spam. You might have noticed a decrease in fake followers and fake comments on your posts
  • These changes will increase the authenticity on the platform and underline the importance of transparency
  • Many influencers that used bots and fake followers got exposed and lost sponsorships
  • The changes to the algorithm put a lot of people out of business. Sellers of automation software earned millions of dollars over the last few years and are now in shock. Nobody has figured out a way to trick the new algorithm yet.
  • A prominent provider of automation software, Jarvee, even sent out an email to all their users, saying that they are sorry and still working on fixes in order to keep the subscriptions running

The rise and rise of stories

  • The story format has been introduced by Snapchat way back in 2013
  • Instagram followed in 2016 (that’s a long time ago, right?)
  • In February of 2017, Whatsapp introduced the feature as well
  • Facebook followed in March
  • Number of story users and views have skyrocketed since then
  • Daily active Instagram stories users increased from 150 million in January 2017 to 500 million in January 2019 
  • 1/3 of the most viewed stories on Instagram are from businesses
  • Branded storytelling seems to have a rosy future on Instagram

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The success of nano-influencers

  • What is a nano-influencer? Just an influencer with a smaller following (usually less than 10k followers)
  • What’s the idea?  That it’s better or cheaper to hit 20 people on IG with 5,000 followers each than one with 100,000.
  • The idea being that the endorsement comes from a real, ordinary person, rather than from a celebrity and therefore seems more genuine
  • Micro and nano-influencers are able to engage up to 8.7% of their audience, while celebrity influencers only stay at 1.7%.
  • Here are some tips to easily increase your Instagram engagement.

The growing distrust for Facebook

  • After the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook’s market value fell by more than $36 billion
  • Just a few days ago: Facebook gave Tinder and other dating apps special access to user data
  • Check out this glorious website: https://dayssincelastfacebookscandal.com/
  • How people feel about big-data companies should be especially important for marketers
  • 80% of Americans have privacy concerns about Facebook (according to this study)
  • Besides the decline in organic reach, a negative trend could further decrease organic reach and make it harder for brands to maintain an engaged audience on the platform

The success of TikTok

  • TikTok was the most downloaded app in the App Store for Q1 2019 with more than 33 million downloads.
  • TikTok’s users are predominantly teens. 41% of users are aged between 16 and 24.
  • Many content creators experienced instant success on TikTok
  • It’s hard to maintain the momentum
  • TikTok is testing links in profiles (a few users are now able to add links to their profiles)
  • It’s not made for businesses. Small businesses are struggling with video content. There are no e-commerce applications yet and links are still being tested

The rise of LinkedIn in the B2B space

  • Microsoft just released its FY20 Q1 report, which shows a 22% increase in user sessions.
  • Microsoft is going to update the LinkedIn algorithm in 2020. They plan to increase overall user engagement by improving the feed
  • The platform’s growth and the future updates might make LinkedIn more relevant for businesses and marketers that haven’t touched it yet
  • We see an increase in people using LinkedIn for networking. That seems to be a shift from its previous perception of “a place to find a job”
  • LinkedIn is also a good platform for publishing thought leadership articles and strengthening yourself or others as a subject matter expert
  • It might be worth it to take a look at LinkedIn in 2020 and follow the conversation around your business niche

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