As we embark on a new year, it also means that for us business bloggers we need to consider where we want to market ourselves in the area of social media. Social media is never going to go away…at least not anytime soon, so if you’re not networking, you may be losing visibility and business opportunities if you’re not expanding your marketing to include posting to Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest or Twitter.
Last year at this time, I posted the latest in social media trends and they are pretty close to where they need to be starting off for 2014. You can read my January 1, 2013 article here if you’re interested.
So this is what I think will happen to the following social media platforms in 2014:
You will notice that I listed Pinterest first because, in my opinion, it’s my top choice for social media marketing and it’s my top choice for visual marketing. Visual marketing has become very popular over the past couple of years and its popularity will continue to rise over the next few years. A day doesn’t go by that we don’t see images splashed all over our Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter newsfeeds, some of which come complete with quotes and tips. This is just one example of visual marketing. I wrote a recent article on how you can start creating your own visual images using Infographics, Shareables and slideshows here.
Pinterest has also been adding on measurement tools to create a better understanding of how followers are finding your pins and repinning them. I’m a big user of Pinterest and the reason I like it so much is I can just search on any topic I need information for and I’m reading and repinning articles so that I can always go back and read the article or I am providing recognition for the author that wrote the article. Free marketing opportunity! That’s what Pinterest is all about! If you want to learn more about Pinterest and how it works, I wrote a series of Pinterest Marketing articles last year that you can find here.
I believe that Facebook will hold its own for 2014 in that it will still be the top social media marketing platform. Facebook is very popular as a casual social media network, in my opinion. The one trend I did notice and I just read about recently is Facebook has become less popular with the teen population. Teens are becoming more social on Instagram. However, those same teens will mature into adults and they may return to Facebook! We shall see.
Now LinkedIn is my choice of business connections and marketing to my connections when I have something important to write about. I belong to several LI groups and by participating and commenting on discussions there, then I’m providing a resource and valuable information to those that actively participate in the groups. This is professional networking and I believe that it will continue to grow and become more of a resource for those that are serious in their business marketing efforts. LinkedIn is still the second most popular social media platform, by the way.
Twitter has lost its ground in being the third popular social media marketing platform as Pinterest took it’s place last year. And that maybe because of the rising popularity of visual marketing. I’m an active Twitter follower, but I have to admit that I haven’t received the return from using Twitter in my business as I had hoped I would. I don’t have a big follow list, but it appears that maybe those that do follow me are not aligned with what I have to offer. I will be reviewing and cleaning up my Twitter follow list in the next few weeks to see if I can change how Twitter marketing is working for me.
YouTube will always be the top video marketing platform, but it’s second in line for contention, Vimeo, has my top vote for specific features that I like that YouTube does not offer. One of the things that I see more of with video creation applications is they have the ability to integrate with YouTube and Vimeo and I find that extremely important in automating video uploads, especially if you are going to utilize a lot of video marketing in your business. I will be creating tons of video in 2014, so I want to be sure I’m using the best tools that take little time to work with.
I’m not a big fan of using Instagram (I do have an account, however), but apparently it’s popular among our younger audience. I do know of popular companies that do utilize using Instagram for their marketing efforts, but I have to wonder what their target audience is and if it’s working for them. I’ll have to dig further into my research and find some more effective results on Instagram marketing.
Vine and MySpace?
Just over the past couple of days, I’m hearing rumors that MySpace is making a comeback and could certainly be in contention with Facebook over the next few years. I don’t have a MySpace account and I don’t plan on creating one as I’ve already got several irons in the fire. If they can prove to me that it’s well worth becoming active on MySpace when it comes to business marketing, then I’ll reconsider creating a profile there.
If you don’t already know what Vine is, here’s a simple definition of what it is:
Vine is a video-sharing app created by Twitter, but it’s not just any video-sharing app. It’s designed in a way for you to film short, separate instances so they can be linked together for a total of six seconds. Each short video plays in a continuous loop, and are viewable directly in Twitter’s timeline.
I see Vine becoming more popular like Instagram, but just like any new social media platform, they do come and go and there will be more apps available in the coming years that will either replace it or be in competition with it.
As I mentioned last year, with any type of social media marketing, the bottom line is you need to be consistent with your message. If you implement a great social media marketing campaign, but it drops out just days into the campaign because you got too busy, then you are robbing yourself of potential web or blog traffic. If you don’t have the time to manage your social media marketing, then you may need to consider hiring someone to manage it for you. I’m a Social Media Marketing Assistant! Feel free to contact me if you are interested in having me evaluate your current social media marketing plan!
Until tomorrow (Day 3 of The Ultimate Blog Challenge)!