One of the best—and worst—parts of social media is how quickly it’s evolving and innovating. Bored with writing the same copy over and over again? Don’t know what to make your next video about? When it comes to social media, you’re in luck. Simply make like Ross and “PIVOT!” The tricky part comes when you try to figure out exactly what is the right direction is to take your program. With so many social media trends popping up, it can be hard to choose. I’m breaking down the latest social media platform trends to help you make the right choice for your business.
Over the past few years, Snapchat has been the platform of choice for the hard-to-target Gen Z. The ephemeral quality of the channel appeals to the younger age groups that know the internet is forever with 69% of 13-17-year olds and 68% of 18-29-year olds using Snapchat. However, this year, Snapchat has seen a decline in the number of teenagers citing the platform as their favorite, which means that Snapchat may be on its way out. Even with this in mind, Snapchat may be the right channel for your content if you have the capacity to create a high volume of videos and are targeting young people. Additionally, consider what your videos are about before making the plunge into Snapchat—followers prefer Snap over IG and Facebook for the authenticity of the content.
If you’re looking to target Gen Z but are worried about the decline of Snapchat’s platform, TikTok could be the perfect solution for you. The app functions similarly to most short video storytelling platforms, but the difference is that these videos don’t disappear after 24 hours and your account thrives off your posts going viral. TikTok has received much attention over the past year after a substantial increase in downloads, making up 42% of the top-ranking apps (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat) downloaded in the Apple App Store at the end of 2018. That being said, the engagement levels on TikTok are only at 29%, compared to its’ rivals +95% engagement. This platform could still be the right choice for your business if, like with Snapchat, you create a lot of entertaining video content for younger generations.
Now you might be thinking, “What does a video game have to do with social media?” But with the huge popularity of Fortnite and the social component of the platform, this video game is actually leading to a change in what people actually consider social media. This is another platform that appeals to younger generations and has 250 million registered players. Because Fortnite functions as a hangout space, the game could be the best place to connect with Gen Z in a place they’re already spending the majority of their time. To get a chunk of this active audience, you’ll need to forget organic marketing and head straight to ad spend—big ad spend. Fortnite is predominantly featuring advertising from huge brands like Wendy’s, Marvel, Nike, and the NFL, so it could be a while before advertisements on the platform become accessible to small businesses.
If you’re looking to connect with Gen Z where they are and have the time/budget to create engaging video content, Snapchat and TikTok may be the right platforms to expand your social media marketing efforts. Similarly, as Fortnite continues to grow, keep an eye out for opportunities with a smaller price tag to advertise on the website.