2015 has been called a record-breaking year for social media sites, and the title is no short of reality. Every year, almost 200 million people are signing up, and by 2016, we are expected to be north of two billion social media users.
What seemed like an odd acquisition a few years back by Facebook has now turned into one of the fasted growing social networks in the world: Instagram.
While some social networks are growing exponentially, others are starting to slow, and some even disappear. What’s next? Though most of us are still focused on catching up to what’s current, here are five hints at the future of social media.
1. Tools to look within.
With the growing influx of social media followers, more users are resorting to features such as “follow” on Facebook to limit the amount of people on timelines, or in the case of Twitter, “lists.”
That being said, marketers such as Gary Vaynerchuk and Mark Suster see tremendous value in every follower, especially as adoption rates and the ability for everyone to become a customer has increased.
A major player that has caught my attention has been Insightfully, a company founded by serial entrepreneur Chirag Kulkarni in a partnership with Jingyu Li and Ajay Saini. It’s focused on using predictive insights and analytics to give people the opportunity to foresee where they can add value to their network based on their network’s social data, with the aim of staying in touch with individuals they wouldn’t otherwise be in touch with.
This tool becomes a boon to business owners and sales teams because of the value that it is adding to their current social media following. And it gives that individual an opportunity to stay in touch with his network, one which 99% of us do not actively foster and refine.
Recently, Insightfully was named a 2015 company to watch for at the Canadian Internet Marketing conference.
2. Greater focus on personality.
Did you know the No. 1 deterrent for social media users is lack of profile completeness?
For example on Twitter, if you don’t fill in the necessary items such as your picture, location, and bio, you can lose your chances of attracting followers.
In the coming years, social media sites will focus heavily in the onboarding process on making users the most complete profiles possible.
This not only will keep users focused and engaged on the respective social media platform longer, but will allow marketers to tailor their targeted ads to a more refined and focused group of individuals.