THE FEBRUARY ESSENTIAL DIGITAL UPDATE

How social media will change in 2014

There’s no disputing the social media space is a crowded place. Changes to Facebook algorithms and more and more brands (rightly or wrongly) jumping on the social bandwagon means it’s become increasingly harder to get noticed.

This year community managers are having to take a step back and reevaluate what’s working online more than ever before. What’s more, there are all the latest digital trends to keep up with. Here’s our digestible summary of what’s set to change in 2014:

  1. More sophisticated content – It’s now possible to create more aesthetically pleasing blogs which gives individuals and brands the opportunity to create even more refined content (see below). And, with the rise of Pinterest and Tumblr, it’s going to become increasingly important to produce content in visual form, whether in the form of infographics, images with text overlay or annotated graphics.
  2. Disappearing media – private messaging is becoming increasingly popular. The number of messages sent and received via WhatsApp has increased from 20 billion per day to 50 billion per day and Snapchat is growing its user base daily. Businesses are already thinking about ways they can tap into this online community from creating limited offer codes to coming up with ways people can pitch ideas using short-lived messages.
  3. Google+, Google+ and more Google+ – There’s no ignoring it. Google is continuing to merge its products and the platform continues to grow in importance. Not only does it allow you to create a very captivated community but also – remember its Google: so the more active you are the more it’ll help improve your SEO results. Google is used by 40% of marketers and two-thirds of these plan to increase activity this year. We talk more about this below.
  4. Stop thinking ‘free’ media – Some of the most effective social campaigns will be paid for, and we’re not just talking about outsourcing the activity. To help cut through the online conversation and reach the target audience there’s a requirement to invest in and learn how to use Facebook and Twitter’s paid tools so that you’ll have an edge on the competition.
  5. Mobile mania – the statistics keep rising and there’s no escaping the key to future success is adapting to and optimising for the mobile market. In short: in 2014 mobile is predicted to overtake desktop Internet usage. Say no more.

 

When content is king and blogs are the boss

Blogging is often considered the catalyst of all things social media. As many platforms are lowering the word count to all but a few characters or just relying on the sharing of image, is the blogsphere at risk?

Not buy diflucan boots according to a new report that reveals that a visit to Tumblr is worth more than a referral from Twitter and Pinterest. A year ago, a Tumblr referral provided the lowest return, but now its No. 2, behind Facebook.

Pushed along after Yahoo’s acquisition last year, the picture led platform was quick to announce two digital based magazines; Yahoo Food and Yahoo Tech, both utilising Tumblr’s visual lead design.

Looking forward, it will be interesting to see how many Tumblr based websites start to appear, as visuals start to hold more of a precedence in social media whilst text posts have much less engagement.

Google+ in 2014

Google has recently taken massive strides in making Google+ the centre of, well, everything.

January saw the announcement that Gmail will integrate with Google+, allowing users to message people within their circles, though you can’t see the email address unless they send you an email.

Late last year Google also implemented a new system within YouTube’s ‘comments’ function meaning you must have a Google+ account to do so. This is an attempt to reduce the amount of online ‘trolls’ and unnecessary anonymous negative comments that plague an otherwise perfect video hosting platform.

These two points are huge. By combining communication with personal relationships and what you’re watching, Google will know an awful lot about your interests and as such can finely target you with advertising.

For marketers, as many will know, Google will also bring together its Places, Local, AdWords and Analytics – essential tools to ensure a business is correctly listed on Google and help increase page ranking. For personal and business users, Google will continue to evolve this year allowing users to have one hub for all their Google activity.

Wearable tech

If you think of wearable tech your first thought may be Google Glass that has been stealing headlines since itsconception in mid-2012.

Slowly but surely competitors are entering the market place. Samsung Gear is becoming more popular as time goes on with their smart watch already on release and the brand has confirmed that ‘Galaxy Glass’ is set forlaunch in September. This sophisticated tech is set to link up with smartphones to control calls and music, further adding to the Gear’s companion functionality.

We’re looking forward to seeing more of this in the future!

If you have any questions regarding Google or anything else digital, please call our London office on 020 257 6470 or the South West office on 01872 243 560.

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