The social media marketing landscape has become more and more dynamic in recent times, with established and up-and-coming platforms thinking up a constant flow of new advertising services. These services are increasingly driven by new technologies, which are disrupting and radically changing the ways users interact with brands, discover products, and eventually the way they are influenced in their online purchases.

Keeping a watchful eye on the latest innovations and trends is essential for every social media marketer to remain competitive in the new digital landscape. In this blog, we’ll take a look at the top 2020 social forecasts and opportunities across the Facebook family of apps and beyond.

Dynamic Product Ads

One of the most useful opportunities Facebook offers is the option to re-engage people who have visited a website and dropped off before performing a conversion. This feature allows marketers to capture once again the attention of prospects who are already familiar with the brand, improving the chances of specific online goals being achieved.

However, for brands with a large product catalogue it is becoming increasingly difficult to retarget users with the right offering, especially after Facebook announced it will be limiting the number of ads a page can run at one time in 2020.

This is where Dynamic Product Ads come into play: using data gathered from the Facebook Pixel or SDK, they implement remarketing campaigns with the aim of showing users specific products that are most relevant to them, based on what they interacted with on the client website. This happens through the creation of a product catalogue within Business Manager which can populate adverts with relevant content. Although created primarily with ecommerce in mind, this system is equally valuable for bigger-ticket items, with automotive, travel and property all able to adapt the product catalogue to work with their products and messaging needs.

According to WordStream, dynamic ads have proven to be able to deliver an up to 60% higher volume of conversions compared to “standard” ads, with a cost-efficiency increase of up to 55%.

Snapchat’s comeback

With users increasingly consuming content on their phones, optimised vertical content has been becoming more and more popular as it offers a full-screen experience for mobile. An ever-growing number of platforms have been rolling out their own version of Stories, however the first ever content of this kind is to be attributed to Snapchat.

After having a difficult year in 2018, the platform managed to snap out of it with a year-on-year increase in revenue of 50% and an uplift in its daily active users of 13% in 2019 (Source: Marketing Land).

Its demographic is a mostly younger audience, with 77% of Snapchat users in the U.K. being aged between 18 and 24. However, it also proved to be somewhat popular among people aged between 35 and 44 (Source: Influencer Marketing Hub).

In terms of ad formats, Snap Ads are available for campaigns targeted to a broader demographic, due to their full-screen video design and short, sharp content. For event-specific campaigns, bespoke geo-filters are available to users who are located within the event’s geo-fence.

AR Ads

AR, or Augmented Reality, may sound like a far away, futuristic concept which would never find its way into people’s everyday lives. Well, think again!

Since August 2019, Instagram has been opening up to allow users to create their own AR effects through Spark AR Studio and to publish their work on the platform’s effects gallery for everyone to use.

This has been a huge opportunity for graphic designers, artists and brands to create their own viral moment on Instagram, opening up a whole new range of organic and paid marketing opportunities.

Results of a survey reveal that 60-70% of consumers see clear benefits in using AR with other technologies, and mobile AR ad revenue is expected to exceed $2 billion by 2022 (Source: Citrus Bits).

Messenger

Finding new ways of interacting with customers in the most direct and personalised way has always been one of the most important backbones of advertising in any form. With over 1.3 billion people around the world spending time on it every month and with it being the second most downloaded app worldwide after Facebook, Messenger represents an excellent solution for businesses wanting to allow their customers to get in touch with them directly.

Ad formats currently available include Messenger Ads (appearing directly on the app’s home screen), Sponsored Messages (allowing brands to deliver messages to customers who have existing conversations with the brand) and Click-To-Messenger ads, which appear on newsfeeds but open up to a Messenger chat. These can be tied in with a messenger bot, which can help to deliver more immediate and better customer service to users seeking answers.

TikTok and Reddit

With both platforms being strongly community-based, it was only a matter of time before we saw both starting to capitalise on this characteristic with a range of brand new advertising options.

With more than 500 million active users around the world and a recently launched ad offering, TikTok offers a great opportunity to reach a brand new, previously untapped audience. The platform is becoming increasingly popular with its unprecedented virality and opportunities to create customised content, surpassing Twitter and Snapchat in terms of popularity (Source: Social Media Examiner).

Its advertising options only include in-feed ads and hashtags challenges at present, however, with the app’s content being strongly based on personalisation, advertisers should carefully consider what their ads look like and avoid them looking too corporate. On the contrary, they need to be as close to native activity as possible whilst still getting the core message across.

Similarly, Reddit presents itself as “the front page of the internet”, with its main objective being to serve the most popular, trending content from all over the World (Source: Single Grain). With the platform rooted in its strong sense of community, advertisers can reach very specific targeted niches and get their content in front of large groups of people, offering both granular interest targeting and considerable scale.

At Space & Time we’re constantly testing and trialling the latest social technologies and platforms to deliver impactful campaigns for our clients. If you are interested in discussing how we can help with your social activity, please get in touch here.

Giulia Bisinella, Paid Social Media Executive