May 05, 2023 - 19 min read
Social media platforms are changing every week and besides all those changes. We are constantly getting the same plagiarized advice from marketers & company blogs.
We kicked off 2023 with some major changes in the first quarter and these changes might impact your social media strategy or help you to create better content & strategies for your business.
I’ve been able to pull these insights together as I track these changes for 8,000+ marketers every week and work everyday to help businesses do better at social.
And this post is part of my on-going content series “one-stop”. Here you will find the latest social media trends & insights from company officials, insiders & marketers added consistently.
I don’t want to give you the crappy stuff, only valuable data backed Trends & insights regarding social media marketing. To begin with:
You heard it right, TikTok is shifting its company goals & testing new ideas to shift the focus from short focus content to long form.
With the launch of “Creativity Program Beta” TikTok aims to make creators post content with a length of 1 min or more. And asks you to post original content on the platform, less trends & more originality.
Since the launch of this new type of creator fund, many creators have started experiencing fluctuations in organic reach when they post content within 15-30 seconds.
The platform wants a long period of user attention and that’s why it is pushing creators to be more original & share long form content.
This shows a demand trend in long form content that makes people stick for longer periods & TikTok can integrate Ads within the content.
Another factor showing Tiktok isn’t the king of Short form content anymore. We have a trend regarding YouTube Shorts growing faster than Reels & Tiktok. The ban regarding Tiktok making a highlight in March also helped Youtube Shorts get the attention of creators & businesses to start publishing more content on Youtube.
Overall both of these trends have contributed to this point of TikTok shifting focus to have creators & businesses create long form engaging content.
Since 31st March, Twitter “For You” feed algorithm is live on Github and available for anyone to access & track the updates regarding the algorithm changes. A move Elon musk made to showcase transparency at twitter.
But at the same time, we got to learn how the algorithm is changed & works in 2023.
First, Pay for reach on Twitter is a thing. As studying the algorithm we learn that Twitter Blue subscribers get more reach than regular users on the “For You” feed. 50% of the content on “For You” is recommendations and 50% from people you follow. And from that data to reach the 50% new people & get your content pushed by twitter automatically. Then, Twitter Blue will help you.
Second, But still the most impactful factors affecting your organic reach are Likes & retweets; these boost your organic reach by 10-20x compared to a factor like Comments.
Third, Algorithm labels tweets from Elon Musk & tracks various accounts + topics continuously. And that indicates to us that respectable sources & accounts on twitter might have a better chance of getting their content seen. That’s why new brands should always build their authority on Twitter first.
Fourth, Outbound links are hated. This trend of Social Media Networks hating outbound links to websites & blogs is not new. And we got confirmation about this through Twitter’s source code. I believe this is a gentle reminder that always put outbound links in comments to make sure the reach of your best tweets don’t drop.
These were some new insights & updates regarding the Twitter algorithm. Twitter is constantly changing and I hope a new algorithm revealed will help a lot.
You can still find posts about “Social Media Trends in 2023” and they might’ve a whole point of mentioning that BeReal is the best platform in 2023. But unfortunately they were wrong, The BeReal growth trend is decreasing from the past few months.
And the amount of time users spend on BeReal is also less than all social media platforms in the Industry. If this wasn’t enough BeReal announced that they don’t have a plan to start advertising on the platform.
How will they survive? Well, it is about culture & the brand messaging of transparency. The App still blends into Gen-Z culture & teenagers are using the app to connect with their friends. The audience is very identical to Snapchat.
But the issue here is that culture attracts new people slowly. That’s the reason Snapchat pays creators more money than Youtube & TikTok to stay on Snapchat & share exclusive content. This opportunity is available for BeReal too. But they don’t have a consistent flow of revenue to pay creators to stay on the platform.
Overall, BeReal is all about Brand Messaging & Culture now. The platform is still in a transition phase to be a marketing channel for businesses & creators.
Your Circle of connections on LinkedIn will make a huge impact on how your content is suggested to other people. As in march, LinkedIn announced that there will be an increase in suggested posts with help of AI & algorithms.
You will be seeing more posts that your connections interacted with in some way like liking the post or commenting on it. For Creators & businesses, this means that build a useful LinkedIn connection network as your content will be suggested to right people through this small tactic.
About Facebook, In Meta’s Earning Report 2022 we learned that use of AI to recommend users new content has increased at Facebook. Mark Zuckerberg said that the usage of AI is keeping users more engaged.
This increased usage of AI on Facebook points us at that it is important to create clear & quality content targeted towards your current audience/followers. The algorithm first analyzes those engaging user profiles and then recommends new users.
Proving us that the network of creators & followers you have + how they engage with your content impact growth. And the impact is about to increase in 2023.
May Update : In the new Meta earnings call, They mentioned they are now going to double on AI recommended content.
In 2021-22 we saw an increase in creation of edutainment content because brands were advised to stop product posting & provide more value to people for free.
But now everyone is doing that especially on Text focused Content platforms like Twitter, LinkedIn & reddit. Edutainment Content isn’t enough if you’re doing “how-to” or “Tips” content for your audience.
Because the standards are now higher since the launch of ChatGPT. Regular Educational content isn’t what people are demanding. They are asking for “How I” & “Journey” content that depicts how different things helped you.
Educational content on social media now requires a person of subject that people connect with or you provide better educational content than AI.
In both ways, Educational content in 2023 is demanding more than just value. You need to add other elements like brand values, storytelling & Personas to this type of content to have success.
It’s not 2020 anymore, people aren’t new to the world of Influencers. They are realizing that Influencers aren’t using the products they promote if they only did one-time mention of the product. The market is booming, creators are getting more and more brand deals. But Users are also getting pitched 10 different products by the same influencer/creator in a span of 30 days.
That’s why we are seeing a rise in #deinfluence on Tiktok & Instagram, Real-time Product users are informing others about products & creator marketing. This new trend showcases brands that are viral due to great marketing but actually have a bad reputation for their product lines. #deinfluence is a fair warning for brands to not spend money before validating user reviews & product.
The Creator market isn’t just a free ticket to go viral, it can backfire too. It has changed. What Big brands are doing is something different from newbies in social influencer marketing.
They are finding creators that find their products valuable & actually use them. And brands are working with them for a long period to have an impact on the audience. These are generally micro-influencers. Regarding Big influencers, brands are experimenting with audiences & signing up deals that build a relationship between products & creators.
The days of working with an influencer with a million followers and getting orders are gone. You need strategies on how your social media presence is influenced through influencers to gain profit in the long term.
The organic growth on Instagram isn’t increased but it is neutralized. As far as I know after certain statements from January, we know the platform worked on some changes to fix organic reach issues across all media formats. And now we have better chances of growing through Imagery content too, like IG reels.
Why I mentioned helpful is that the Instagram team & CEO are informing SMBs and creators consistently about certain elements of marketing on Instagram.
First, Instagram doesn’t deprioritise your content if edited in TikTok, Capcut or other editing apps. But recommends you to stop using watermarks on your content.
Second, Instagram’s CEO confirmed Hashtags don’t impact engagement that much. And I also shared why in my “one-stop” Instagram guide.
Engagement is different from reach, by engagement Adam meant interactions you get from your existing followers & audience. Hashtags don’t impact that, but hashtags may impact organic reach on your post if they are relevant to content you post.
Third, Instagram’s new hidden university “Instagram University” for creators is a program
that is led by Employees & experts at Instagram to help creators. And many students have revealed that keyword research is an important factor to make your Instagram content do better. That’s why focus on searchable keywords & include them in your posts.
After reading this, don’t go searching “Instagram university” on google. There is another course by a fake guru with the same name “Instagram University” and you might get spammed if you sign up for that course. The official course is for US creators & Businesses only with invite access.
Overall, Instagram Team is trying to educate people about marketing on IG and busting the myths about the platform.
I certainly believe we are now on the opposite sides of social media marketing. If you're a new business in the world of social media marketing and just started focusing. You are still on the regular side of brands trying to build a social media presence. And you can risk a lot to generate brand awareness for your business.
If you are established and have a brand presence on social media. But now focused on the next step or level of brand awareness, it is important to take a step back & start listening.
Listen to the conversations already happening around your business & what people are saying about your business, content and products. Is it positive or negative? Maybe there is something that needs to be improved.
Before you chase the next viral post, understanding the state of your social media presence is crucial. Because you don’t want to go viral and see your existing audience talk bad about you in the comments of that piece of content. It impacts your social brand image & also leaves a bad impression on a potential new audience.
That’s before you go on your next viral adventure, keep track of your social audience. Listen & talk to them about your brand & their concerns. Social media is also about social understanding!
Don’t press publish without listening.
As of April 2023, EU users of Instagram & Facebook can opt out of Ad tracking & they will no longer be served personalized Ads. And this change can impact Ad targeting in Europe pretty heavily.
What does this mean for social media advertisers? This can generate a big push towards better market research & Ad creatives to convert the audiences besides the major targeting changes. A better job needs to be done on the Marketing side.
A small tip for Advertisers is running Ads through Influencer Accounts with access to Paid partnerships, they can target look alike audiences of that influencer to have a better conversion rate in Facebook Ads manager.
Overall we will see how the Ad targeting is impacted with this new change & how many users will opt out of the Ad tracking system.
A report by McKinsey shows that Gen-Z aren’t loyal like other generations. They will switch up to another brand if they are cheap or a better option. Besides having a favorite brand they love.
What does this mean for social media marketers? Many Brands ignore their competitors like they aren’t even in their market. But they are and your audience on social media knows them too.
What Gen-Z behavior shows us is a need to provide informative content about your industry & products consistently to have a better chance of keeping them tied up with your brand.
A less informative consumer is a wanderer and that’s why you need to inform them consistently.
Try to do that through Instagram stories, BTS Tiktok content & Community forums/chats.
This small move to inform your customers consistently will change your social game & make the audience more loyal.
AR filters are bringing a huge change to retail & DTC markets. The change isn’t on a huge level, but a report from Snapchat suggests that AR filters help shoppers make easier buying decisions.
By launching AR filters for brands, through the usage marketers learn a lot about the average consumer of their product.
Regarding VR, the growth has slowed down while among Fashion Brands it continues to grow. Brands like Tommy Hilfiger and H&M are still doing Metaverse events to keep the users engaged.
But on a higher level with Meta & Google slowing down & shifting their focus from VR products to AI & advertising. We are seeing a slow down in the use of VR to connect with social audiences.
Also with Snapchat’s Ad business slowing down in Q4 2022, what we have now is a neutral state for AR & VR trends on social media. But I’m pretty sure these trends will grow back in the next few quarters.
Since the TikTok takeover, meme marketing is growing at a faster rate and now is part of social media strategies to get new eyeballs on the business.
But there is also an issue regarding meme marketing, most memes originate from different internet cultures & people. And established brands always need approval from legal teams to jump on meme trends. As the brands will be profiting from the attention gained through that meme.
Now you aren’t copying the whole meme, there is new original content added by your team. Not in every case, but in a few cases you might need to get copyrights to use the meme. Especially when you use the meme post to run Ads.
You will not get sued for your meme post on a brand/business account. I only want you to be informed about the benefits & consequences.
Meme marketing is growing very fast on Tiktok as the platform rewards broad content that everyone finds relatable. That’s why most big brands like Microsoft, Duolingo, Hilton & many others are jumping on meme marketing trends to find new audiences & get more reach on social media.
And on other platforms like Instagram, reddit & Twitter meme marketing always works. The impact is short but research shows brands associated with humor are more memorable to consumers.
Besides Tiktok & Pinterest, we now have paid subscriptions features on every other social media platform. Have a look at the number of platforms offering premium options:
One of the reasons people agreed to pay for new Meta paid subscriptions is account security & Identity verification. Having a look at Twitter Blue, we have more than 50% Blue subscribers with less than 1,000 followers.
For Twitter & Meta people are paying to have a better experience on the platform & feel their data is secure. Yes, both platforms have promised more reach to paid users. But the impact on growth will be less and more on maintaining a healthy presence on these platforms.
That’s why brands & creators are also opting in for these subscriptions to make sure it is easy to find their business & account when there are fake bot accounts scamming users on these platforms.
On other platforms, Snap, LinkedIn, YouTube & Discord. Users are signing up for extra benefits to enjoy limited features of the platform.
Pay for Social Media isn’t a bad trend. But it is an exit strategy for these companies as Data laws are getting strict, Advertising business is slowing.
If Meta & Twitter introduced Ad free Pla like Reddit premium, the impact of “Pay for Social Media” will be seen among advertisers & PPC marketers. But for now Meta has confirmed there are no updates regarding a new Ad free plan. Elon on other hand shared that Twitter might offer a high priced version of Twitter blue offering an Ad-free experience.
No need to fear for now if you advertise on these platforms. “Pay for Social Media” is a wise Investment for your business in 2023.
Besides Instagram now allowing upto 5 links in your profile & LinkedIn last year releasing Links button for posts. Data shows that traffic from social media platforms remains flat and is dying slowly.
And around 30-40% of the traffic on social media platforms is directed towards each other. Facebook’s widely viewed content reports are released every quarter. And in the last two quarters, most traffic driven to a link was for a Youtube video & a Tiktok. And the top 20 most visited links are either Youtube, IG or Tiktok. You can see the majority of traffic is going to the social media brands.
This slow death of social media traffic is affecting publishers the most. With Buzzfeed News dying & Vice is looking to fill for bankruptcy. When we track trends, we see their traffic from social media is slowly dying. And SEO traffic also remained flat.
What it means for businesses & creators online is, how the internet works is changing. Someone viewing your content or visiting your website is not that much of a value.
You have to own your social media traffic at a place where you have better control over your ideal audience. That is why Newsletters, forums & Communities are becoming the new norm for media businesses. And your business should also adapt to it.
Why? Because regular Information is available today in so much abundance. No one wants to only read, they want to interact on that piece of content.
The average user experience required to fulfill is changing, the bar is going higher.
It is time to find new ways and formats to own your social media traffic and provide your space to those people. Then, they will learn your purpose and share your business with others.
In some way, we are going back to basics of marketing, growing from word of mouth. But the road to reach that growth is extended because the paths are changing.
Reddit is making a lot of effort to differentiate themselves from all other social media platforms. Even though other social media users view redditors differently from years, redditors might experience a change in upcoming months.
If you are unfamiliar, Reddit have a set of different teams to grow their offerings to marketers and businesses.
Karmalabs Team at Reddit have the job to work with agency clients and brands to run Advertising & partnership campaigns. These teams are also expanding globally and reddit is working on future of its Ad business.
The second team is RedditX, this team isn’t that public like Karmalabs. There are various leaks about this team works on future of reddit like upcoming changes & new product offerings.
The team worked on Reddit Talks previously and the new highlight is the team working on e-commerce features. Yes, integrating e-commerce into reddit might sounf strange to many.
But my experience as a reddit user is I get my fashion & product advise off this app. And I can see reddit offering businesses “shops” feature. A feature like this will allow reddit users to embed prdoucte into their comments.
Yes, reddit user is very much against self-promotion. But we aren’t talking about e-commerce from that angle. Because that is very hard to implement.
But Reddit having a Meta like e-commerce checkout and product tagging features will improve the user experience.