5 social media trends communicators must embrace

If you’re not creating video content, keeping your online messages concise, paying to boost posts and more, you might be missing out on bigger opportunities for your organization.

Social media tactics are a must for any well-rounded PR or marketing campaign.

However, how can you stand out in the sea of content and messages online—especially as social media best practices continue to change?

Consider these growing trends that can pump up your digital game:

1. Video is king.

Scroll through your Facebook news feed and you might notice that a large volume of videos is viewed and shared. If you haven’t already, it’s time to jump on the bandwagon.

Video is the future of social media marketing, and it can drive engagement for your organization. You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars to get your message across. The greatest tool you could possibly have lives in your pocket: your cell phone.

It’s not about the production value, but rather posting relevant content in which your audience is interested.

2. Live by the ’90/10′ content rule.

Though most social media pros know they shouldn’t post only promotional content, it seems that only some employ the practice. The 90/10 rule means that only 10 percent of your posts should be promotional. The remaining 90 percent should be educational, industry-related content.

Practicing this rule can boost your brand in a non-invasive way and display your industry expertise. Ditch the online sales pitch and switch to content that starts conversations with your consumers.

3. Keep it short and sweet.

Attention spans online (and offline) are getting shorter by the second. For brand managers looking to captivate consumers who are used to 140 characters and 6-second videos: It’s time to adapt.

Keep captions short and creatively relay information. Rather than cramming three paragraphs into one caption, create a video or infographic that translates better on social media’s visual landscape. Keep your character count under 140 characters for all social media platforms, not just Twitter.

4. Pay to play is becoming necessary.

Nearly every brand manager promotes their products and services on social media. Sometimes you need an extra boost to send your post to viewers’ news feeds.

There are many advantages to putting your money where your mouth is, including targeting the right audience. Social media advertising enables you to target by location, age, gender, income, interests and more. Targeting lets you deliver your message directly to consumers that are already interested in your industry and more likely to purchase.

5. Creativity wins.

Top captivate consumers, you must stand out from other content.

Before posting online, ask yourself: “Would I stop scrolling to look at this?” If the answer is no, continue brainstorming to give your post the flare it requires. Whether it’s clever wording, a more visually-pleasing image or even an occasional “dad joke,” look for ways to infuse excitement into your content.

Hannah Lacamp and Gunnar Wilbert are social media coordinators at Pavlov Agency. A version of this article originally appeared on the agency’s blog.

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