The unprecedented situation created by the recent havoc has disrupted the whole business landscape. When virtual connections became a necessity and digitization was in full swing, marketing strategies changed automatically.

Since people were spending more time online, marketers came up with new social media tactics. Whether we talk about Facebook or Twitter, Tik Tok or Instagram, new trends can be seen everywhere.

To understand this sudden change and its impact on marketing, let us study the social media trends in detail. Here are a few stats for you:

Impact of 2020 Events on 2021 Social Media Marketing

Hootsuite published a recent report about marketing trends in 2021. The report is based on a study in which 11,000 marketers were questioned about the changing marketing trends. The research was done in Q3 of 2020, so the findings are relevant and prevalent:

Let me share the key points here:

  • Instagram Is Taking Over Facebook – A 2% increase is calculated in the advertising on Instagram in comparison to Facebook. This increase was seen from July till September. Instagram advertisement reached 7.1%, which is thrice that on Facebook. However, Facebook is still the first choice for marketing by 78% of emerging brands.
  • Instagram is Marketer’s first choice for Marketing Campaigns Aimed at Increasing Brand Reach: As far as the growth in reach is concerned, Instagram tops the list again. The success is evident by the budget forecasting of 61% of brands. The study shows how brands are willing to spend a huge chunk of their marketing budget on Instagram. Facebook is second in the list, preferred by 46% of the brands. Similarly, 45% of the brands prefer YouTube for marketing.
  • TikTok and SnapChat – Though Tik Tok has increased in popularity during the pandemic, it is not the preferred marketing platform for brands. Only 14% are planning to invest in this platform, and just 4% of brands prefer Snapchat.
  • Brand are looking to Attract New Customers in 2021 – Business goals have also changed enormously after the pandemic. In 2021, 73% of brands are planning to acquire new customers, compared with 46% of brands in 2020. Additionally, 64% of organizations are planning for brand awareness after the turmoil settles down.

A Boom in Online Purchases via Social Channels

An analysis by Visa revealed a growing trend of online purchases worldwide. It highlighted how social media platforms are becoming a source of interaction for such purchases.

Some key details of the study are:

  • 17% of consumers willingly visit social channels for online purchasing. Among them, 35% appreciated the easy check-out system.
  • Worryingly, 58% of the consumers are not satisfied with what they shopped from social platforms. Besides this, 38% of clients are even thinking of getting a refund. It highlights the risk of buying goods from new and fake retailers on social media.

Social Ad Spending Increased by 56.4% (Q3 2020)

The social trends report by Social Bakers highlighted an increase in global ad spending in Q3. This increase was 56.4% in comparison to Q2. These figures were highest in North America with a growth of 61.7%. Central America and Europe experienced a growth of 55.6% and 50.4%, respectively.

However, ad spending’s varied as per the business industry. The FMCG and Finance sector has shown an increase of 61.3 and 59.4%, while the finance sector stood at 35.3%. I also increased my social ad budget in the third quarter of 2020. Since few products like wearable health devices and prayer time reminders were high in demand, I got an impressive outcome.

1. 22% Increase in Facebook Ad Spending

Facebook has revealed its total revenue for Q3 of 2020. The increase of 22% in ad spending reveals the uplifting trend of Facebook marketing. This increase is much greater than Q2, where pandemic related financial constraints have surrounded marketers in a skeptical situation.

Additionally, the daily users are now 1.8 billion, whereas the monthly users are 2.7 billion. The Family users who use at least one Facebook app also increased by 14%. Looking at these stats, Facebook is ready to welcome more hefty investments shortly.

2. Twitter Revenue Returned to Normal

In Q2, Twitter experienced a decline of 23%. However, in Q3, the company has reported a 15% increase, which made its total ad revenue $808 million. Users of this platform also increased by 29%, and so is the ad engagement, which is 27%. This increase in traffic has automatically reduced the cost of engagement by 9%.

3. East Asia Reported an Ad Spending Increase

Though the businesses are now returning to normal, digital means still have their importance. It is evident from an increase in ad spending in East Asia. Here the pandemic is in much control, and brands are looking forward to increasing their ad investments.

Besides this, the cost per click also increases in this region by 30.7%. This trend has given a great clue to other marketers. As soon as the pandemic comes under control in other regions, ad spending will further increase.

Massive Increase and Video and Voice Calls

Besides revenue, users, and ad spending, Facebook revealed some interesting stats regarding WhatsApp’s calling feature. The company declared a total number of 1.4 billion calls on New Year’s Eve.

Interestingly, this is 50% more than the total calls of 2019 New Year’s Day. Similarly, the number of group calls are also higher in comparison to an average day of 2019. Facebook further revealed how 31st December 2020 has set historical records for the company.

This time, when everyone was following the social distancing policies, video calls were made in large numbers. Besides this, live streaming on this single day showed 55 million broadcasts as a combined data from Instagram and Facebook.

Wrapping It Up

In short, COVID-19 has brought massive changes in the marketing trends. Besides this, social media, which served as a life-saver for brands, has revealed some historical figures. The transition towards digitization has automatically increased ad spending, online purchases, and active users.

Thus, brands are arming their strategies with more social media marketing campaigns. It is therefore expected that marketing on social channels is likely to increase even more after the pandemic.

It is also expected that Instagram and Facebook will remain the preferred platforms for marketers. Other channels like Twitter, YouTube, Snapchat, and Tik Tok will also show increasing trends. The right mix of social media channels remains the optimal approach.

Nouman Ali provides ghostwriting and copywriting services. His educational background in the technical field and business studies helps him in tackling topics ranging from career and business productivity to web development and digital marketing. He occasionally writes articles for Muslim pro.

Marketing during COVID stock photo by SmartPhotoLab/Shutterstock