Greetings from Jackie M. Johnson!
Keeping up to date with the latest social media trends isn’t always easy for busy writers and speakers. Things change quickly in the digital world, and we don’t always make time to read the most recent tech blogs or social media news.
Yet, authors are required to “grow our platforms” so we can build our brand, market our books, build community and connect with readers and potential readers—and much of that is accomplished online.
So I’ve culled 6 social media trends that may be helpful in your social media strategy.
1. Have a social media strategy.
OK, this is not a new trend but a foundational building block. First things first. In order to succeed, you need a strategy. Have a plan, execute your plan, revise your plan, and persevere. You need to know who your audience is and what you want to accomplish. For more information, read Prepare a Social Media Plan from the University of Chicago. Plus, there’s a helpful template you can download for free to organize your social media strategic plan.
2. The written word still rules.
Writers will love this. Research on the latest social media trends for marketers shows that content is still king in the digital world. Social Media Examiner posted results from The 2014 Social Media Marketing Report that revealed “Over half of the marketers (58%) surveyed chose original written content as their most important form of social media content…For marketers who have something valuable to share…written content works brilliantly and provides an opportunity for true thought leadership.”
3. Don’t just tell them, show them.
While “content is king,” your social media also needs images and videos to be seen among the massive amount of posts, tweets and other formats vying for readers’ attention. Don’t let readers pass you by because you’re lacking visuals. A recent post on problogservice, 5 Social Media Trends All Writers Should Follow in 2015, disclosed this helpful advice: “All of your posts should include a visually stunning, attention grabbing picture or embedded video to capture your audience’s attention.” In the digital world, show plus tell equals greater success.
4. Social listening—and responding.
“This trend is exactly what it sounds like—opening your eyes and ears and listening to your audience,” says Jayson DeMers in his Inc. article, 5 Social Media Trends Buzzing Right Now. Demers emphasizes the importance of keeping lines of communication open with the people you are trying to reach, and “not only sharing your own opinions, links, and photos, but responding to those who react.” He asks, “How many people do you respond to on your Twitter account? Do you reply to people who leave comments on your Facebook page?” And he reveals that the key to connecting on social medai is audience engagement and finding out what you could be doing better. DeMers concludes that in doing so “you’ll be using the opportunity to provide more value to the content you share on social media.”
Pinterest is not just for women. This growing social media destination, which describes itself as a “visual discovery tool,” is gaining popularity with men. In fact, men are now the fastest growing demographic on this popular social media format according to a recent post on TechCrunch. Pinterest has attracted primarily a female audience in the past, but this week (Nov. 13, 2014), according to the article, “its male audience is now growing more quickly than women, with men accounting for one-third of all sign-ups on the site.”
6. Be mobile ready.
According to SayDaily’s Top 5 Trends in Digital Media for 2015, websites must be mobile-ready because “everything’s shifting to mobile.” And, the article emphasizes sophistication and simplicity for the best user experience. Why? “Everything changes on a tiny screen. Do not be the brand that simply imports your website to mobile—you will lose points immediately with consumers if your fonts are tiny and it’s hard to navigate.”
Jackie M. Johnson is an author, blogger and freelance writer in Colorado. Connect with her at www.jackiejohnsoncreative.com. Jackie blogs at A New Day Café and Living Single, a blog for singles of all ages on Dr. James Dobson’s website.