If the only consistent aspect of social media is change, then 2024 is sure to be more of the same for marketing teams across the globe. Keeping our eyes on how all the social channels and their audiences are evolving is a big part of the job here, and we have the luxury of being able to witness all the incredible work brands are doing and use those observations to turn our gaze toward the future in order to help you prepare for what’s coming next.
In short, we envision:
Social shopping becoming even more crucial for brands
AI and the chatbots it powers growing more ubiquitous
Customer care growing more social
Further diversification of video length
A renewed focus on social intelligence to understand audience behavior as privacy takes center stage
How will those social media predictions and trends play out with a well-organized social media marketing team? Let’s peek in on a day in the life of a hypothetical VP of Marketing named Michelle as she checks in with her team to see how their new initiatives are going in Q1 2024. She’s been working with her team leaders to find ways to take advantage of their new social media platform, and she’s anxious to see progress as she heads to work.
Social shopping is becoming even more crucial for brands
Michelle walks into her office just before 8:30 and barely has time to set down her purse before there’s a light knock on her door. She sits down and sees Daniel, her Director of Social Commerce, leaning in the doorway.
“Can I update you on the UGC stuff I mentioned yesterday?” he asks.
“Hang on just a sec.” Michelle gives a quick scan of her inbox before turning back to him. “OK, yeah, come in. Sit down.”
Daniel opens his laptop and walks Michelle through a new campaign his team has been working on, utilizing some great user-generated content (UGC) they were able to cultivate using their new UGC platform, identifying and collecting authentic content from the people who love their brand’s clothes. He explains how the platform allows them to curate the content quickly with AI-powered visual search, and even get permission for use right within the workflow.
Once they select the best UGC content for Instagram and TikTok, they can then tag each piece of the customer’s outfit with the exact SKU they’re selling, making it immediately shoppable. The analytics have just started coming in, but Daniel says the results are really positive out of the gate.
“This sounds great,” Michelle says. “Let’s make sure the analytics are integrating all our social channels, and give me an update on where we are next Friday.”
“You got it. Thanks.”
AI — and the chatbots it powers — are growing more ubiquitous
Around mid-morning, Michelle walks across the office to where the Customer Care team is set up and stops at the desk of Hannah, the Customer Care Director, who takes off her headphones and looks up.
“Hey, Michelle. Sorry, I didn’t see you there at first. What’s up?”
“Oh, no problem. Just curious how that AI chatbot’s working for you guys so far.”
Hannah motions her to come around so she can see the screen, and she switches windows to look at the latest data on the impact the AI chatbot has had in the first month since they implemented it. Because customers have been able to get self-service help through the bot at any time of day or night, Hannah shows Michelle that their team members have spent 32% less time dealing directly with customer issues, while sentiment analysis on social media is 46% more positive in the same timeframe.
“Not only that,” Hannah says, “but the interactions we are having are taking an average of six fewer minutes because customers are often narrowing down to one question by the time they get to an associate. That also frees people up to take more time when someone needs a higher level of care.”
“Terrific start, it sounds like,” Michelle says. “Stay on that. Let’s see if that trend keeps going.”
Customer support becoming more social
Michelle starts to walk away but stops, turning back and catching Hannah just as she is picking her headphones back up.
“One more thing,” Michelle says. “That social media push you talked about. Happy with it so far?”
Hannah smiles and stands up. “Let me show you.”
They walk over to the corner of the room, where a group of six team members are busily typing on their keyboards. Hannah explains that they’re constantly monitoring TikTok, Instagram, and X (formerly Twitter) for any mentions or tags for their company and products. With their new social platform, any case that’s opened can be handled seamlessly across all channels where they might reach out for help, making handoffs simple and meaning no one has to start from scratch just because they switched from bot to social or email.
Also, sentiment analysis has been huge for Hannah’s social team, helping them understand exactly when they should step in to offer help. All of this is monitored within a single dashboard, allowing the full team to understand the conversations that are happening across every social channel.
Further diversification of video length
After grabbing a quick lunch, Michelle is walking back to her office when she sees Brad, her Director of Video and Multimedia Content, catch her eye and start walking in her direction. She checks her watch and sees she has about 20 minutes before her next call.
“Hey, Brad. How are things?”
“Really good. Everything set to shoot that video tomorrow for LinkedIn? The social team keeps asking me about it.”
“Ah, yes.” She had almost forgotten, as busy as she’d been all morning. “Tomorrow at three. I’ll be ready. Looking at thirty seconds again?”
“Actually, you know what? We may go longer this time.”
“Really? Something change?”
Brad talks about some of the new metrics the social team has been sharing with him. Their new platform has given them in-depth analytics about video views across LinkedIn, Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook, and it’s revealed an unmistakable trend toward 30- to 90-second videos performing at a much better rate than they did in early 2023.
“Honestly, we might have missed the trend a year ago,” Brad says, “but this new unified analytics setup is helping us get a fuller picture of what’s happening.”
“Interesting. Well, let’s go with what the numbers say. I’ll see you tomorrow. Thanks.”
A renewed focus on social intelligence
Pushing through the door to the meeting room, Michelle shuffles inside and nudges the door closed with her foot, carrying a laptop in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other. She smiles sheepishly at Stephanie, her Director of Audience Intelligence, as she sits down across from her.
“Sorry I’m late,” Michelle says. “Got caught up on a call and couldn’t pry myself free. We wanted to talk about new ways to understand customers, right?”
“Exactly,” Stephanie says. “We can’t lean hard on cookies anymore, and people are getting more protective about who they give their email to.”
“So…?” Michelle leans forward in her chair.
“So, I think the key is social media.”
Stephanie explains that their new social platform’s customer intelligence capabilities seem really robust and should allow them to maintain and even grow their understanding of what their customers want. AI can help them cluster topics and break them down by sentiment, hashtags, mentions, and pretty much anything else, while the flexible dashboards give them simple, one-click reporting so they can quickly understand the signals their customers are sending via their social posts.
“This really might fill all the holes we need filled, as far as intelligence goes,” Stephanie says. “We just need to really stay connected with the social team.”
“Good plan. Just let me know any help you need with keeping your team aligned with social, but I like this.”
There’s no question that any new year is going to bring major changes in the social media landscape, and 2024 is very much not an exception. With the right preparation and tools in place, though, your team can be ready for whatever comes your way.
If you’d like to learn how Emplifi can help to ensure you’re on the right track as 2024 gets under way, let’s talk about how we can set you up with a demo.