As online marketers brace themselves for a further Google update in 2014, there is a growing sense that SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is an increasingly moribund past-time. This is a serious misconception, however, as the fact remains that SEO is simply an evolutionary technique that continues to change according to social and technological demands.
That said, there is little doubt that SEO is no longer pre-eminent in the commercial world, with social media marketing is set to become an increasingly dominant outreach tool in 2014. This is also a constantly changing entity, however, meaning that marketers must be watchful and stay in touch with prominent industry trends.
3 Social Media Marketing Trends to Look for in 2014
With this in mind, what are the most prominent social media marketing trends that are likely to impact on the industry in 2014? Consider the following: –
1# Viral Content will become Increasingly Streamlined
In 2013, marketers were able to capitalise significantly on viral content as a way of sharing their message with a global audience. This was enhanced by evolving content and video marketing techniques, which would create a sufficient element of excitement and encourage optimised levels of social sharing. There were signs towards the end of the year that the trend was beginning to buck, however, as online users become more aware of viral marketing techniques and less susceptible to their mystique as a result. Alongside Google’s passion for in-depth and engaging content, marketers will need to streamline their output in 2014 and rely on quality rather than gimmicks or disproportionate hype.
2# The Dependence on Facebook is a Thing of the Past
Since the evolution of social media marketing, there has been something of a reliance on Facebook as a primary source for businesses across the globe. While this makes perfect sense when you consider the sheer size of Facebook’s user base, the demand for more strategic and targeted marketing has forced brands to embrace alternative networks. This has been reflected in the rising commercial popularity of audio-visual and image-orientated websites such as Pinterest and YouTube, while the steady growth of Google+ has also provided an outlet for those who are looking to conduct a cohesive marketing campaign. 2014 will see this trend continue, as businesses look to focus on creating a comprehensive and integrated social media presence that achieves the best possible results.
3# The Integration of Free and Paid Social Media
While social media has never really been free for commercial use, it has successfully cultivated this perception for nearly a decade. This will no longer be the case in 2014, however, as individual networks continue to develop traditional revenue streams through the use of integrated advertisements and sponsorships. Resources such as Instagram, Google+ and Pinterest all followed this course in 2013, and many more will follow suit as they look to capitalise on their vast and global user base. This is why there has been such a determination among marketers to develop metrics and measure the value of their social media activity, as they will be forced to invest more capital into these mediums if they are to compete with rival market forces.
This article was written by Lewis, who is a blogger and researcher for technology solution firm Card Cutters Limited. He has a passion for cutting-edge business practice, and writes regularly on commercial trends across a range of websites.