6 Social Media Trends Your Association Should Know About

Marketing Audra Hopkins

How can your association keep up with the fast-paced growth of the social media world? We’re giving you six social media trends of 2017 that could help boost your association’s social media engagement numbers.

It’s common knowledge that social media is on the rise with new people joining the online world every day. According to Statista, about 22% of the world’s population is a Facebook user. Following Facebook in the leader charts is Instagram with about 600 million active users. Social media platforms continue to grow bigger, but also more influential each year.

 

1. Social media content curation

By now, associations have figured out that creating content is important for attracting new members and keeping current ones engaged. But, what else can you do to keep audiences interested?

Content curation is a new trend that can attract new viewers to your association’s social media platforms. Content curation happens when associations sift through relevant web content and hand-pick the most interesting and useful pieces to feature on social media. This makes associations stand out to social media users.

Why is content curation so important? Curating useful content for your audience will help your association become a leading influential voice on social media. Audiences will come back to your social media pages for content instead of wasting valuable time sifting through mass content. Essentially, you’re doing the hard work for them. By curating content for your audience, you save them time while providing the best content to fit their interests and needs.

Content curation ensures that your association will stay on top of current content that relates to your own goals. Your association can create a content curation strategy in order to reach your target audience. Researching your buyer’s persona and selecting content with high audience interaction will allow you to curate content that helps boost your social media presence.

 

2. Live video

Another trend picking up speed in the social media world in 2017 is live video. With Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram introducing a live video feature within the past 2 years, businesses are getting on board and creating live video content for their audiences.

Live streaming became popular in 2016 with Periscope allowing live streaming for companies and their marketing teams. Last year, Periscope reported 200 million streams to date and 110 years of video watched live every day. Live streaming and video features reach out to a new, wider audience each day.

Live streaming allows your association’s audience to tune in without physically being at an event or conference. Members may not be able to attend every event your association hosts. Inviting members to an event live stream can keep members in the loop and gain new membership referrals.

Your association can also stream at conferences to provide useful content to members. Live stream a panel discussion or a presentation that audiences may find interesting. Attracting audiences with live video chats and presentations can boost your association’s engagement numbers.

 

3. Facebook 360° images

The trendy new 360° image feature gives social media users the full-experience of being somewhere from the comfort of their own home.

360° photos and videos are new to Facebook, and they’re simple to create: Just upload a panoramic photo and Facebook detects and uploads the shot with a 360° feature. This unique type of content has become popular with Facebook users and generates a sizable amount of likes, comments, and shares.

Why are 360° images useful for your association? They can invite social media audiences to take a closer look at your events and conferences. A 360° image taken at your event is a unique, interesting take on content marketing and member engagement.

Audiences consume image content faster and easier than other forms of content. Contentmarketing.com claims that images are responsible for 90% of information transmitted to the brain when consuming content. Creating a 360° image can reach more of an audience by being an efficient, fun engagement strategy.

 

4. Facebook lead ads

We’ve covered Facebook lead ads before, but they’re worth mentioning again. Facebook lead ad allows audiences to view your association’s ads and fill out a lead gen form without ever leaving the Facebook browser itself. While this doesn’t seem like a major advancement in social media, it can boost your association’s generated leads in the long run.

Lead ads are created like regular ads. The ad should have text, graphics, images, and a strong call-to-action to keep audiences hooked on your ad. Then, audiences are asked to fill out a lead form without ever leaving their Facebook browser.

This advertisement strategy boosts your association’s visibility and expands your audiences by generating more leads. This strategy is also cost effective as your cost-per-lead is only affected by audiences further along in the lead nurturing process.

If your association is seeing a decrease in Facebook generated leads, it may want to check out Facebook lead ads!

 

5. LinkedIn video

LinkedIn video is one of the newer social media trends and LinkedIn users are quickly getting on board.

The new feature allows LinkedIn members to upload videos of behind the scenes work, conferences, events, and much more. While the video content is not live, it’s a great way for to catch your association’s members up on what they may have missed at your latest event.

Using LinkedIn video is simple and very similar to other video hosting platforms. The “share” feature can be located at the top of the LinkedIn mobile app. You have the choice of recording directly on the app, or posting a pre-recorded video.

After posting the video, you can view audience insights on LinkedIn mobile and your LinkedIn dashboard using a desktop. Your association can see what kind of traffic your videos are getting. You can also view any likes, comments, or shares your video gets. The new LinkedIn feature ensures your association is reaching the targeted audience and increasing its visibility.

 

6. Mobile media

Whether it’s marketing or member engagement, mobile media is becoming popular for associations looking to branch out on social media.

According to statistics by Tech Crunch, 80% of Facebook’s social media ad revenue was generated from mobile ads last year. On top of that, Instagram and Twitter have increased their own ad revenues in the past few years, as well.

How can your association benefit from this? Market to members using a mobile media approach. Create content offers that are specific to mobile media. This creates an interesting spin on content while also marketing to a wide audience of mobile users.

Experiment with different mobile media platforms to find what works best for your association and its members. According to statistics taken in 2016, Millennial social media users report seeing ads on Instagram more than on Snapchat. Members may react more to one media platform than another. Make sure to exhaust all mobile media sources to reach your audience.

 

Social media trends can seem overwhelming just because the sheer amount of options out there! However, becoming familiar with these  six trends will make social media a manageable task for any association. Stay on top of social media trends and your association can look forward to increased engagement with your audience.