Social media has, surely, evolved over the years. According to a Netpop study, social media usage has grown over the years, by about 93%. Facebook alone has more than 800 million active users. 

Social media marketers understand the power of social media, and they have been constantly at the wheels to churn benefit out of it. A business could reach thousands of people with a single post five years back, but nowadays, you would be lucky to get 20 views. Social media have been changing their algorithm constantly over the years to maximize their profits.

The days of organic traffic over social media are gone, and here are the biggest changes all marketers should be aware of.

Engagement-Based Marketing Is On The Rise

Users come to social media for interacting with their friends and family, not to have advertisements thrown in their faces. This is why ad-based platforms are slowly changing their methods and placing more importance on engagement. 

Businesses are encouraged to grow their reach by creating value and attracting customers to join their pages and follow them. Users are much closer to brands they share values and beliefs with and benefit from.

Five years ago, brands could post content and get away with it. Fast forward to now; unless you pay Facebook for the privilege, you won’t have a lot of people who can see and respond to your actions. 

Instagram and Snapchat have evolved to become platforms where brands have to showcase their value through engaging content to get ahead. There is no easy way of generating a lot of buzz, anymore. 

Organic Reach Is On The Decline

The real downturn to organic outreach came in 2014 on Facebook. Facebook’s VP of Advertising technology announced that Facebook had been increasingly handling more ads, which means marketers were starting to get competitive. The brand wanted to control what information got posted in their news feed. This made getting organic visibility that much harder. 

Facebook also slowly started to fine-tune their relevant content technology, which means users would no longer be bombarded with things they are not interested in.

If you own a business and have tried organic outreach over Facebook, you would have noticed a major dip in the results during 2018. This was when Facebook started ranking content to make their news feed more and more competitive. They wanted to make sure users connect with what they like and don’t get fed information they don’t connect with.

They prioritized content by friends and family, which is the core of social media giants like Facebook. With Instagram, they have achieved this by limiting brand influence by adding value-based content, instead of advertisements.

As a brand, people can still pick and choose their content to make sure they are highly ranked. The main way to succeed is to pander to your demographic, know their needs and demands, and cater to it.

Rise Of Social Media Advertising

Social media advertising has been at the core of everything social media companies have been experimenting with. Businesses have to go through Facebook to advertise their content, and they can no longer cut out the middleman.

Every business can reach their goals by using PPC services or social media services. Business accounts get benefited from various social media metrics that judge demographic, business health, and user demands, which is a privilege that many businesses pay for.

Page fans data
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Page fans data
For example see the data about your fans -gender, location or their time spent online.

Companies can utilize the business accounts to track their social media metrics and reach their targeted ROI through the smart application of business intelligence. They now also have access to segmentation of the customer base by location, gender, income, status, and much more. This is useful in creating more customer-centric advertising. But again, it all comes at a price. Twitter, Facebook – all have business accounts they give you access to for a monthly fee.

Competitor Intelligence

One thing that businesses did not have access to in the past was competitor intelligence. Tracking what others are doing is key to replicating their success and changing your own sales strategy. Competition is becoming intense in today’s world. 

Marketers need to understand the customers and what problem they need to solve, instead of what products they want to sell. It revolves around adding value to the users more so than marketing your own content. And nothing is better at this than watching your competitors try and figure this out. 

Companies can watch what others are doing and bypass a lot of mistakes and trials in fine-tuning their own strategy, all thanks to social media benchmarking tools, which was never possible only five years back.

Customer Service Marketing

Businesses that do not provide adequate customer services are slowly getting penalized by social media. A lot of brand failures have been publicly highlighted over social media, cutting extremely poor customer service.

Companies are realizing this and taking on the trend to utilize social media to boost outreach and showcase their commitment to customers. People check social media pages to understand if a brand takes the concerns and complaints of its customers seriously. 

Jaded customers can create a ripple effect resulting in a massive loss of business, and companies can no longer be cavalier about creating a bad experience thanks to social media, which can destroy their reputation in seconds.

Advanced Social Media Metrics

Targeting customers is the main objective of businesses in social media, and outreach is becoming more and more advanced through expert analytics and metrics that social media sites have started selling. 

Companies like Facebook are working with massive reserves of data which can be analyzed much more accurately through paid business accounts. It opens up an enormous way to segment customers, ultimately increasing the value of every post and PPC campaign they create, which is rather expensive.

Your Turn

As you can see, the social media landscape has changed drastically over the years. What started as a way to connect users has now emerged to be a great way to communicate with target audiences, drive engagement, and strategize marketing campaigns.