We’ve seen social media move on in leaps and bounds this year. Here’s our pick of what to look out for in the coming year:
- Facebook brand pages are now more powerful than ever – this year felt like the year that companies and brands really grasped the power of the page – used in the right way of course. This will continue into 2013 but brands need to work harder to create content if they are to retain consumer interest and loyalty.
- Twitter still dominates the news space and looks set to continue this; younger age groups now use Twitter more for instant communication with their peers – instead of text or email and therefore the number of users is likely to continue to steadily increase in ’13.
- Pinterest is growing in influence and this is one to watch for 2013. Good pictures tell the story in a more powerful and engaging way than text can. Social media consultants will have to pay more attention to the images they use to convey content next year, brands will start to secure Pinterest pages to host their imagery for consumer use.
- Instagram has scored an own goal in the last couple of weeks with its privacy issue – proving again that the social space has to be treated with a modicum of respect as the mass community does not take kindly to the networks flexing too much muscle. Will Instagram recover its reputation next year?
- Mobile access and use of social media is now the norm and 2013 is likely to see brands innovating towards mobile rich content and new ways to entice and engage consumers and audiences.
- Clutter, buzz and overload – we’re now so overloaded with information through a multitude of channels that the rise of the blogger community has represented a great opportunity for PRs. However, we may see the bubble burst in 2013 with PRs having to learn which bloggers represent genuine brand promotion opportunities and which are freeloading for products and giveaways.
- The B2B stalwart Linkedin has continued to go from strength to strength this year – commanding a powerful position in corporate and business social networking. 2013 will be an interesting year for Linkedin. Brands should not forget this network as its influence continues to grow.
- Will Google+ make an impact in UK social space in 2013 over and above an SEO tickbox exercise for brands wanting to ensure the highest possible ranking online? Google has so far failed to make a dent in the armour of the Facebook community. However, with Facebook becoming a mobile ad space where brands bombard users often with irrelevant messages the Google+ influence may grow.
Let’s see what the next 12 months bring…happy new year everyone.