By McKenzie Chambers

Marketing strategies have always been a huge part of many businesses’ goals when the New Year arrives. Social media will continue evolving in the business world in 2018 and beyond.

Live streaming is one of the top interests in social media. Many businesses have started to use live streaming to capture the attention of followers. It also gives viewers the feeling of a more intimate relationship. Consumers feel more invested and can connect in a powerful and believable way. In 2018, more brands will start to understand the compelling effect of live streaming.

As social media has grown, Twitter has unfortunately failed to grow followers in the last year, despite its use by the president. LinkedIn and Instagram have surpassed Twitter in followers, according to the Internet Trends report by Mary Meeker, a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. A big loss for Twitter was access to streaming NFL games; Amazon now has the streaming rights.

Growth for Instagram is additional content known as Stories. It is estimated that over 200 million people use Instagram Stories each month. This is significant and more than the Snapchat platform. It is predicated that in 2018 nearly half of all Instagram users will be using Stories. Instituting Instagram Stories to a brand will help customers stay connected with social status.

Multiple brands are communicating constantly. Research shows that people are not only sharing personal information, goals and life steps in their posts, but they also love to mention their brands. Many celebrities give thanks to brands throughout their daily posts and even more so during their successful achievements. Many companies now understand the importance of creating a long-term relationship with their consumers as well as using social media as a platform to advertise.

Mobility fuels the major growth of social television. More people are now viewing from their mobile device or tablet.

Many social networks offer existential new marketing opportunities involving social marketing. Now that many social media platforms have developed a stable user base and followers, 2018 will have a distinct focus on ad growth for future marketing plans. This means that many businesses are now putting more advertising dollars towards digital media platforms. Video content is always key in the viewers’ eyes.

Most importantly, keep in mind that video streaming and virtual reality will become a norm. Take this into consideration for marketing plans now, not in the future. This is the perfect time to evaluate what needs improvement from 2017 to continue making this year the best yet. Brands will need to undertake newer social platforms to get up to par with 2018’s most successful social media trends.

McKenzie ChambersMcKenzie Chambers is part owner, production assistant and social media maven for DK Productions, a full-service production company and award-winning producers of television shows, music videos, films and commercials.