Category Archives: Trends

Social Media Trends to Watch in 2016

2016 is almost here! At Yearick-Millea we’re starting to map out next year’s social media strategy for our clients and taking a look at some things we believe will be important come 2016. Here are some of the things we’ll be keeping an eye on in the upcoming year:

  •  The continued rise of advertising – The importance of advertising on social media will continue to grow throughout 2016, as social media will become more “pay to play” than before. The good news is that ad targeting will keep getting more drilled down, resulting in more effective ad campaigns.
  • Periscope – The live broadcasting app owned by Twitter will be a huge part of social media in 2016. It has been used in the obvious ways – news and sporting events – but in 2016 it will replace video in some cases to create an exclusive feeling for content.
  • User-generated content – We will continue to see a rise in the use of user-generated content for social media, especially for retail brands. Customers trust the word of other consumers far more than the brand, so creating a trust based on how other customers feel and interact with your brand will be vital.
  • Quality over quantity – Create quality posts with thought and strategy behind them instead of large quantities of simple posts that don’t provide quality information or contribute to your overall brand strategy.
  • A move away from clickbait-type headlines – The backlash from “You’ll never believe what happened next…” type headlines will grow on Twitter and Facebook. In 2016, we’ll see a shift from headlines written for clicks back to informative headlines that rely on the piece’s quality.
  • Expanding integration of e-commerce – Everywhere you look on social media you can find one-click buying and donation buttons. This proliferation of e-commerce on social media channels will continue to expand throughout 2016. The real question to determine their success will be if people trust the security behind these easy shopping shortcuts or not.

What do you predict will be the social media trends during 2016? Let us know in the comments.

Social Media Trends to Explore in 2015

It’s hard to believe that it’s almost 2015! Here at Yearick-Millea, we’re starting to think about trends we should be exploring for our clients in the new year. The following are a few trends we think will be important on social media in the upcoming year:

  • Instagram – If you have clients in retail, beauty or other visual industries, it’s time to make sure they’re on Instagram! Instagram continues to grow—it just surpassed Twitter in users—and it is the most popular visual social media network. Also important to remember is that unlike Pinterest, Instagram’s user base is more diverse.
  • Facebook – Unfortunately, being successful as a brand on Facebook in 2015 will mean paying more for ads and even post views. With post views continuing to drop as result of Facebook’s News Feed algorithm, brands will need to be creative with their ad spend. Good content will remain a must, but it’s looking more and more like paying to play is, too.
  • Ello – Keep an eye on Ello in 2015 – the newest social network is still in beta, but it continues to grow each day. However, before you consider it for your brand, remember that Ello is meant to be the “ad-free” social network to counter Facebook. A careful strategy with a focus on conversation and engagement, not selling, will be vital to any brands trying to use Ello.
  • Customer service – Social media has been the go-to option for customers for some time now, but in 2015 expect customers to want faster response times and more personalized responses. It’s important to map out your response procedures and determine who is responsible for customer service to be prepared for this. As you know, a negative customer service experience gets more press than a positive one.
  • Analytics – Social media analytics will continue to grow and delve deeper into customer behaviors online, allowing brands to better target new customers and retain old ones.
  • E-commerce – With the development of “buy” buttons on Facebook and Twitter, social buying is something retail brands should monitor as they become available. It’s not yet known if these buttons will be popular and seen as an even easier way to purchase items or as an invasion of privacy that people will be uncomfortable with.

What are your predictions for trends in social media during 2015? Let us know in the comments!

2015

Real-Time Marketing

Real-time marketing has become one of the most popular ways for a brand to spread its message to the public. What exactly is this trend in marketing? More and more, brands are inserting themselves, in a timely-manner, into a popular conversation or event on social media. One of the most popular examples, and perhaps the start of the real-time marketing craze, was Oreo’s tweet from the 2013 Super Bowl. Real-time marketing on social media from brands is the new norm for large consumer brands.

There are a few key steps brands need to take in order to successfully pull off a real-time marketing stunt:

Audience – Be aware of what is relevant to the brand’s audience. For some audiences, that may be the Grammy’s and for others it may be the Stanley Cup Finals. It will depend on the products or services provided by the brand. Keeping it relevant keeps it from appearing as a desperate ploy for likes, favorites or retweets.

Monitoring – Depending on the size of the brand or staff, create a team (for example, social media experts, PR professionals, designers) to constantly monitor trending topics, news, cultural events, etc.

Process – There needs to be a streamlined reactive process in place. Decide who needs to be involved in each step and what they will be responsible for handling. Remember, the window for successful real-time marketing is small, so the process needs to run smoothly.

If the guidelines are followed and it’s executed well, like the Oreo tweet, it can garner you significant exposure – Oreo’s Super Bowl tweet received 15,878 retweets and 6,494 favorites.

However, if the post is done poorly or in bad taste – like this Pearl Harbor tweet or this 9/11 tweet, it will likely earn the brand a spot on lists with titles such as “Top 5 social media fails…”

Lastly, real-time marketing can only give a brand a temporary boost in exposure– it must be followed with constantly good content that their audience cares about to stay relevant and popular.

Trends in PR for 2014

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Believe it or not, it is almost 2014! The new year will most certainly bring new resolutions, trends, and technology. It’s also a great time to reflect on your marketing and public relations strategies. As the industry continues to evolve, here are a few PR trends to watch for in the coming year.

Content Marketing
In any marketing strategy, quality content has always been important, but with the rise of social media, it is possibly even more important. Content that is both interesting and relevant is what unites a company to their audiences more than ever for both B2C and B2B audiences. This is where the “storytelling” trend comes in to play. If you have a customer who is already passionate about a company/brand, the content, such as infographics, videos and photos –anything visual, will create emotion. And that emotion is what allows an audience to drive exposure of the original message. Whether it is B2C or B2B, find a way to connect to your audiences through experience and give them the tools to promote your brand too!

A Variety of Distribution Channels
It’s increasingly rare that a company’s audience can be found in just one place. PR professionals will be more mindful of creating different types of content that can be shared across all social media platforms. Of course, the content still needs to blend cohesively with other marketing materials. By taking the approach of using a variety of distribution channels, a company can encourage more engagement from their current audience while acquiring new audiences too. The mix of channels and formats ensures that the target audience will find a format that is appealing to them. But, does this mean that traditional media pitching is on the decline? It’s quite possible that PR professionals will spend more time pitching bloggers and influencers, rather than journalists and reporters.

Public relations will always maintain the ultimate goal of creating and maintaining mutually beneficial relationships, but it’s certainly looking like the way we achieve those relationships is evolving.