Top Social Media Trends for 2020

By Joydeep Bhattacharya

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More than 3.5 billion people in the world use social media (as of 2019). Facebook remains the top social media platform with 2.45 billion monthly active users (as of the third quarter of 2019). 

Gen Z is the largest consumer group today and marketers need to prepare themselves to capture the attention of this new generation.

Staying updated on the latest social media trends will help you plan your marketing strategy and get the most out of it. 

Here are eight social media trends that will evolve in 2020 and the years to come. 

1 - Instagram Will Remove Likes

Instagram is one of the largest social media networks, with around 1 billion monthly active usersIt’s no secret that people and even brands consider likes, comments, and followers as a measure of popularity. 

Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, announced at Facebook’s annual event for developers that they will be testing hiding likes in Canada. After a few days, Instagram started testing “no likes” in a few more countries, including Australia, Brazil, Ireland, Italy, Japan, and New Zealand. 


Image result for instagram reoves likes

Instagram is likely to apply this change globally in the coming months. Users will still be able to see who liked someone else’s post or viewed their video. 

Former Facebook employees told CNBC that “hiding likes will increase the number of posts people make to the service, by making them feel less self-conscious when their posts don’t get much engagement”. 

If Instagram removes likes, then it won’t be easy for brands to measure the direct impact of their influencer campaigns. This might encourage them to invest in Instagram ads. 

2 - Influencer Marketing Will Continue To Soar

Influencer marketing has been around for many years now, and it is going to stay for a while. By 2020, influencer marketing is predicted to become a $10 billion industry. Most of the marketers intend to increase their influencer marketing budget in 2020.

Besides, 92% of consumers trust endorsements delivered by an influencer more than a traditional advertisement or endorsement by a celebrity.

Going by the numbers, we can safely predict social media influencer marketing will continue to rise in 2020 and beyond. Influencers dominate social media platforms such as Instagram. With the rise of TikTok, influencers have got a new platform to promote brands. 

Influencer marketing helps businesses reach new and much wider audience. Since micro-influencers generate better results than macro-influencers, more and more companies have started working with small, relevant, niche influencers. 

Besides, companies like Influence.co are making it easier for influencers and brands to collaborate by bringing them together in one platform. You can easily conduct an influencer search to find influencers in your niche and start your campaign. 

3 - Video Content Will Rise in Popularity

82% of consumer internet traffic will come from videos by 2022. Videos will account for 75% of mobile traffic by 2020. 

Users view an average of eight billion videos on Facebook daily (as of 2019). Pinterest users are 2.6x more likely to make a purchase after seeing brand video content on the platform (as of 2018). 

The numbers indicate the importance of video content on social media platforms. Videos are more engaging, entertaining, and easy to digest as compared to text and image content. 

Whether it’s short-form videos like those popular on TikTok and Instagram Stories or long-form videos like those on YouTube and Instagram IGTV, videos will continue to rise in popularity in the coming years. 

For example, Mercato, an online grocery store, has already started leveraging videos (including animated videos) on their Facebook page to educate and keep users engaged for a longer time. 

4 - TikTok is Likely To Dominate Other Social Media Platforms

Popularity in video content means video-driven platforms such as TikTok will likely dominate other social media platforms. 

TikTok has 800 million monthly active users worldwide (as of October 2019). Users generally spend 52 minutes per day on TikTok while the average session is nearly five minutes, which is longer than Snapchat or Instagram. 

TikTok launched ads early this year (January 2019). This has opened doors for influencers (including micro and nano influencers) and brands to reunite in the platform and reach a new and broader audience. 

Brands like BMW, Samsung, Guess, and Ralph Lauren have already started leveraging TikTok for their advantage. Samsung created a Hashtag challenge on TikTok to celebrate the launch of its Galaxy A Smartphone (#GalaxyA campaign). 

The campaign encourages users to overlay the video with a song tailor-made for the challenge called “Write My Story”. The campaign resulted in the creation of videos that have garnered over 31.9 million views

5 - Use of AR and VR Will Rise In Social Media Networks

Social media platforms will see a rise in the usage of modern technologies such as AR (augmented reality) and VR (virtual reality). 

Snapchat has already implemented AR (widely known as 3D Bitmoji) to drop cartoon characters (such as dancing hot dogs, twerking chipmunks, and more) into a camera lens’s field of view. More than 70 million people use Snapchat Lens Studio daily. 

Facebook is also leaping in this direction with the introduction of Horizon, their VR world. Users can experience gravity-defying, a distance spanning, genre-bending games, and more. Facebook is currently testing the Horizon and will likely release the full version in 2020. 

Instagram is also not behind. Instagram opened its Spark AR Studio for everyone in August. From making a face to syncing effects with movement, connecting effects with objects to transporting people to new places, you can do almost everything. 

With major platforms adopting AR and VR, we will see a huge rise in people using AR and VR in social media. 

6 - Social Media Stories Will Still Be Popular

Instagram and Snapchat’s stories have already become popular, and the trend doesn’t seem to die anytime soon.

Around 500 million people use Instagram Stories daily. More than 400 million Snapchat Stories are created every day (as of 2019). 

Stories are short, engaging, and give authentic insights to the audience. As Stories disappear after 24hrs, marketers are leveraging it to create a sense of urgency among viewers and boost sales. 

7 - Social Media Might Become a Primary Source of Sales For Ecommerce Stores

Social referrals to retail eCommerce sites have grown 110% in the last two years, outpacing all other referral channels. 

With the integration of eCommerce features in social media such as Facebook Marketplace and Instagram Store, these platforms might become a primary source of sales for online retailers. 

Also, Instagram now allows shoppers to purchase products directly without having to leave the platform. This gives users frictionless shopping experience. 

Brands and marketers will continue to leverage these features and incorporate social commerce in their sales strategies. 

8 - Podcasts Will Go Social

In the year 2019, there was a huge rise in podcasts globally, both in terms of listeners and creators. There are more than 800,000 podcasts on Apple (as of December 2019).  22% of the Americans (around 62 million) listen to podcasts every week. 

The way social media is dominating digital marketing, podcasts will too find their way to integrate into existing platforms. 

The best part about podcasts is that you can access it on any digital media player. Besides, podcasts give marketers an excellent way to monetize their products or services. 

Here are three ways podcasters will be able to benefit from social media. 

  • Increased advertising opportunities. 
  • Boost traffic. 
  • Boost their sales. 

Wrapping Up

The number of social media users is increasing every day. This gives businesses and marketers a great opportunity to boost their revenue. However, it is crucial to stay on top of social media trends to make the most out of it. 

The rise of TikTok, video, and influencer marketing gives businesses enormous opportunities to reach and engage more people. Social commerce and stories will continue to rise in popularity. Also, podcasts are likely to get into social media in 2020. 

Learn more about Social Hire

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We're an organisation that helps our clients boost their social media marketing by offering social media marketing on a monthly basis.

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