Everybody wants to know what the next major social media platform is. Which sites will be as popular as Twitter or Facebook?
It’s possible that the next social media platform is already out there. However, the next big social media site won’t look like the ones that were created five years ago.
You must keep up to date with social media trends as a freelancer. Social media is a great tool for helping you market your freelance business and connecting with other people. This isn’t going to change. However, how you do it might change.
This post will share six key social media trends I observed in the past year.
These trends are likely to be the next major social media platform. You may also enjoy Should Freelancers “Waste” Time on Social Media?
What will the future social media platforms look like?
You can see the new social media platforms right now if you are curious about the future of social media. The majority of new social media platforms follow one or more of these trends.
Many articles such as this one from Natasha Lomas at TechCrunch, Tablets to Grow 53.4% This year, Says Gartner. The Traditional PC declines 11.2%. These statistics show that mobile device sales have been growing faster than traditional PC sales. Mobile will not disappear. It should not surprise that social media platforms for mobile will be the first to go.
Video is one example of the new trend in social media that centre social participation on video. Video are an integral part of the Internet. They add interest to posts. As YouTube intro videos and animations become more mainstream, we can expect video to be of greater importance than ever before.
Older social media platforms like Facebook are designed to reach everyone. Although they may have begun with a specific demographic, they quickly expanded to cover the entire population. The new social media platforms are different. Social media platforms that target specific groups will be able to address their needs and keep them in mind. Inbound.org focuses exclusively on the needs of inbound marketers, and Next-door focuses only on the interests and concerns of specific neighbourhoods.
4.Hybrid (functional & social)
The newest social media platforms don’t just allow for socializing. Many social media tools today combine social networking with practical functionality. As the population becomes more aware of social networking, hybrid social sites will become more popular. Be Funky is a new hybrid social networking site that combines photo editing with social sharing.
Anyone could sign up for the older social media platforms. Except for LinkedIn, it was free to join. LinkedIn even offers a free version. The new social media platforms are becoming more exclusive. To join these new social networks, you might need to be invited, like with Branch.
With more social media sites being added daily, social media aggregators will be just as important as social media discovery tools and other tools that allow users to organize their social interactions. Flip board is a good example of a social-media aggregator tool. Flip board allows users to create and share custom magazines using information from other websites.
What is a Freelancer to do?
You might be wondering what to do with all these changes. Do you ditch traditional social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ and embrace newer sites? Do you want to try every social media site that you find, in the event it becomes popular?
These are some guidelines:
- First and foremost. Be sensible. It is impossible to be on every social network and still do your freelancing work.
- Keep using traditional sites. The traditional social media sites are still important, at least for the moment. Do not abandon the presence you have created.
- Be educated. Keep an eye out for new social media sites and know the trends. (You can do this by just reading this article.
- Be there for your clients. Go where your prospects and clients are. Consider adding a social media presence to a site that your clients are already using.