Social Media Trends 2023: What to Expect
Updated: May 24
In social media, what's old is new again. As different platforms rise and fall in popularity, the tried and true methods of social media marketing stay afloat. Knowing which trends to follow in the near future is essential for businesses trying to reach out to customers and hook them into the products they are destined to buy.
This one's a hefty read, so click below on your desired topic to discover where it may be going in 2023:
User-generated content (UGC) is any type of content that is created and published by users, usually customers, brand loyalists, or employees. I could be anything from a photo to a blog post. Social media marketers should know by now that UGC is huge for brand awareness and authenticity - which is what users want.
The reason it's so valuable is that it can influence engagement and increase your chance of making more sales. However, these pieces of content aren't always authentic.
It's important to know the difference between UGC and UGC creators. UGC creators actually create sponsored content that appears authentic but is designed to showcase a specific product.
Have you ever noticed that there's some content seemingly created by real people but it looks too good to be true? Chances are it's a UGC creator creating posts for businesses that make them appear to be authentic. But that is the goal of UGC - authenticity.
UGC is often seen as more trustworthy and authentic than traditional advertising. Instead of being marketed something directly from a brand you're not familiar with, why doubt your favorite influencer who's not going to steer you wrong?
Not only is it more authentic, but it can be more engaging and visually appealing than traditional advertising from brands which creates more user engagement and genuine customer experience.
User-generated content can help build a sense of community and bridge that gap between a brand and its customers. After all, customer loyalty is the overarching goal of every business.
Increased Brand Reach
Social media platforms have made it easier for users to share their content with a wider audience, especially if you follow the algorithms closely.
UGC has become increasingly important for brands on social media platforms because it can help potential customers start the buyer journey or, even better, convince them to buy on the spot.
What started out as a karaoke app for teens is now one of the world's biggest social media channels. TikTok has become such a fun app to use for the average user, and an effective marketing tool for small businesses that implement it into their marketing campaigns.
According to an article from Grin, TikTok will continue to roll out updates to make it easier for businesses to succeed. With tools released earlier this year, Tiktok is most likely to continue innovating through 2023.
One example of this continued innovation is the development of e-commerce integrations to allow easier selling on the platform like Instagram already does.
TikTok's popularity continues to increase day by day. It's already one of the most popular social media platforms at #6, but if downloads continue the way they do it could take the top spot in the next couple of years.
Augmented Reality (AR) will become more mainstream
Since Facebook created the social augmented reality platform Horizon, there's been a steady increase in VR platforms and users. Another brand new feature worth mentioning is Meta's Spark AR Studio.
The app allows anyone to add virtual reality effects to their Instagram posts and photos. It is currently only available to creators through signup, but we may see a future with our favorite influencers using these. We're interested to see how it can affect user engagement.
Augmented reality has already been proven favorable by social media users, and it is expected to have a major impact on other channels of digital marketing as well.
Meta is pushing for virtual reality like ReadyPlayerOne. Despite the skeptics of decentralized networks and virtual reality voicing their concerns over web3, Mark Zuckerberg has made it his mission to bring everyone into the Metaverse. But for what?
Will it change the way customers interact with brands, or will it shorten the human attention span even more?
Video Content will continue to shine
Short-form video content specifically has been king across social platforms, and there's no sign of it losing its popularity. Many users, especially younger audiences, favor content that's a minute or shorter.
Although the head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, has stated that Instagram is not trying to favor videos over photos, it's blatantly obvious that social media users favor video content (especially short-form videos) and video marketing. It'll be interesting to see how much more popular video content will get in the coming year.
Social media platforms being used as search engines
Has TikTok become the new Google? It's full of information that users can access through keyword searches, just like Google. For the people that follow Neil Patel closely, we've known this for a while now, and TikTok is cooking up a master plan to compete for market share in the search engine world.
And we're already starting to see the plan in effect.
TikTok has increased the character count of post captions from 300 to 2,200. What does this mean exactly? They're trying to take market share away from Google as a search engine.
The new limit will allow content creators to create content optimized for search terms as younger generations, especially Gen Z, are using the popular social media platform for answers to their queries.
For example, you could hop on TikTok right now and search for major trends in the marketing world and you'd get plenty of results. The top results are there for a reason - they have key phrases you're looking for in their captions and thumbnails with other phrases related to that topic.
Although TikTok is not the only app being used for making searches, it's clear that hashtags don't really matter like they used to and people are searching for key terms instead.
This has been confirmed by Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri earlier in 2022.
It's insane to think how fast the algorithm moves; we as marketers live to follow it.
As we were pushed to adapt our online interactions throughout the pandemic, we had to explore a new way of interacting with our peers without looking them in the eye.
That's why Facebook groups could potentially make a big comeback going into 2023, as they nourish space for professionals or students of any background to communicate and share their ideas without having to meet physically.
This would then transition into the social media aspect of Facebook, opening up a gateway past what was once perceived as a platform mainly for older audiences. The groups would allow for global collaboration and knowledge sharing on various topics, with the potential to create long-lasting virtual relationships between Facebook users.
These virtual relationships could push the use of VR, even more, to enable virtual chatrooms where user avatars can meet together instead of talking in a group chat.
Twitter has been one of the most interesting social media networks this year. In case you're not caught up on the drama, here's a timeline of Elon Musk's attempt to purchase the platform.
Earlier this year, Twitter executives stated that they aim to add nearly 100 million users to their site by the end of 2023. With a change of ownership, the future is unclear as of now.
Amid the Elon Musk purchase, it's uncertain the direction Twitter is heading. Since the change in ownership of the popular social media platform, it's not clear how advertisers feel because of new management, according to an article from Marketing Brew.
This could be for good or for worse as the popular social network gains attention and more active daily users. Great changes are coming to Twitter and creators/businesses should be on the lookout for all these potential changes.
Twitter has been a prominent social media platform for years and they hope to continue that trend by achieving whatever Musk has planned.
Since Twitter is currently not one of the top 3 platforms that marketers use for their marketing activities, so it'll be interesting to see how the next few months shape out.
A Change of Landscape on LinkedIn
There's no doubt that social media is constantly evolving, and LinkedIn is no exception. In recent years, we've seen a major shift in the way LinkedIn is used, with an increased focus on personal branding. This trend is only set to continue in the coming years, as more and more people look to establish themselves as influencers and creators in their respective niches.
While this can be a great opportunity for companies to connect with potential customers and build their brand, it also has the potential to turn LinkedIn into a more traditional platform.
We may see less focus on professional networking and collaboration, and more on personal promotion. Only time will tell how this all plays out, but one thing is for sure: LinkedIn is changing, and we need to change with it.
At the end of the day, the key is to stay consistent!
Brand-creator partnerships are the new social media norm, so much so that it's being implemented into the marketing strategy of big and small companies alike. And since influencer marketers received their first organic measurement guidelines from the Association of National Advertisers (ANA), the field has become more trustworthy.
Rather than pouring so much into social media ads, brands have been searching for influencers to help them reach their target audience.
In the past couple of years, influencer marketing has become an increasingly popular way for companies to connect with potential customers. And with the rise of TikTok, it's easier than ever for companies to find and partner with influencers, as well as on other social media platforms.
According to a recent study, companies that partner with influencers on TikTok see nearly 93 percent more engagement than those who don't. And because TikTok is a platform that's open to influencers of all sizes, companies with any marketing budget can find partners who can help them reach new audiences. Whether you're looking to build brand awareness or drive sales, influencer marketing has proven to be a great marketing tool.
Social commerce has created new shopping channels for consumers and more opportunities for small businesses to reach their business goals.
Instagram specifically wants you to stay on its app for as long as possible, and they do an excellent job of doing so through social shopping.
Brands are taking advantage of this newer form of online shopping by revealing new releases or updates first thing on social media through posts and stories.
Platforms like Instagram and Facebook have made it possible for more brands to reach a wider audience and create a more engaging shopping experience, and even allow regular users to sell their items, i.e Instagram & Facebook Shops.
There are a ton of potential customers on social media. This growth is being driven by a number of factors, including the increased use of mobile devices, the rise of visual content, and the growing popularity of influencer marketing.
The Bottom Line
Social media has changed drastically in the last few years, and businesses have had to adapt to keep up. In the past, word-of-mouth was enough to get your business out there. But now, in order to compete with other businesses in your industry, you need a digital presence. And social media is a big part of that, some industries more than others.
With social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, you can reach a wider audience than ever before.
But it's not just about being on these platforms; it's about engaging with your audience and providing them with valuable content.
That's where most businesses struggle.
They don't have the time or resources to create quality content on a consistent basis, and in some cases, they refuse to acknowledge the fact that their brand's growth may very well depend on digital marketing.
As a result, they fall behind and struggle to catch up.
That's why working with a team of experienced marketing strategists can help you make the most of your social media presence.
By making the most of your social channels, you can make the most out of growing your business! Let's get social!