Trend Deep Dive: Social Media
Social media is such an important tool for businesses and brands to establish their style and connect with customers.
As our love for scrolling and swiping grows, social media continues to dominate searches on Elements. So, what are the benefits of using social media and how can you utilize different channels as an Author?
In this trend deep dive, we talk to Envato’s resident social media experts to get the low down on the best social media channels, insights into customer demand, and their thoughts on how you can slay your socials this year.
So, what is social media?
In a nutshell, social media is “digital technology that facilitates the sharing of content, multimedia, and information through virtual networks and communities.”
What are the benefits of social media?
Social media has a whopping 4.7 billion users worldwide and counting. Woah.
In the beginning, social media was used as a way for friends and family to communicate, and while this is still one of the main reasons people use social, its uses have also evolved into a wide range of functions.
As an increasing number of people spend time on social platforms each day, social media is now at the forefront of businesses’ marketing strategies.
Social media is great for creating brand awareness and is a vital tool for reaching a vast audience, attracting customers, and encouraging them to make a purchase. In fact, 25.9% of people use social media to find products to purchase, therefore more and more businesses are looking to establish a presence on multiple platforms.
Having a solid social strategy also allows businesses to get customer feedback and build customer loyalty.
“In 2023 we’ll see more companies using digital marketing to authentically tell their brand’s story, as well as in improving their employer brand to attract not just customers, but also employees. This kind of storytelling involves using all the tools at marketers’ disposal – especially social media – to communicate the company’s mission, values, and employee stories. Investing in this kind of digital storytelling isn’t about a quick conversion; it’s about securing consumer trust and loyalty and transforming these customers into long-term brand ambassadors”, explains Laura Moss, Content Marketing Manager at EveryoneSocial.
What are the main social media channels?
With roughly 2.96 billion monthly active users as of the third quarter of 2022, Facebook is the most used online social network platform worldwide.
Over 200 million businesses use Facebook tools, and more than 7 million advertisers actively promote their business on Facebook, so it’s pretty safe to say that Facebook is a good place to start when building a social media presence.
Facebook is also a great place to create a community with your followers as there are many tools to help you stay connected, such as public and private groups, Marketplaces, and Fan Pages, where you can post your work and reach a large audience.
There is no denying that video is the most engaging form of content online. “Social media platforms have begun to transform their user experience not only to include video but, in many cases, to favor it,” says Jen Mckinnon, Envato’s Video Marketing Manager.
There has been an explosive growth of video on social platforms like Instagram Stories, Reels, TikTok and Snapchat, but the biggest player in the video game is YouTube. The platform is the second-largest social media site, with over 500 hours of video uploaded every minute and billions of hours of watch time daily.
“YouTube has become one of the most popular social media sites of today, largely due to its ability to connect people who have similar interests. It was one of the first platforms able to deeply engage with audiences on relatable subjects by virtue of the content’s user-generated format,” explains Jen.
As 57% of the world’s video views come from mobile devices, the vertical format is popular. As the social media landscape evolved, YouTube kept up, adapting to user behavior and implementing features like ‘YouTube Shorts’—a section of the site that focuses on short-form video in the vertical format.
“Users now expect short, succinct, and to-the-point video content and the preferred orientation is trending towards vertical video,” says Mark Brodhuber, Envato’s Video Content Specialist.
Not only is YouTube an effective way to build and engage a community of like-minded viewers, but it’s also the second-largest search engine in the world (after Google), so it’s a great way to get found.
Instagram is a visual platform, where you can showcase your business visually with photos, graphics, and videos. In the app, you can upload photos, videos, Stories, reels, and live videos, as well as share longer-form videos on Instagram Video.
Brands can create Instagram business profiles, which provide heaps of insights and analytics of their profiles and posts.
“Instagram is a uniquely visually-driven platform, making a vibrant canvas for creatives to showcase their talent. Everyone from graphic designers to video editors has an opportunity to captivate niche audiences and promote their work to a global community. With 21% of people aged 13 and over on the app worldwide, Instagram’s vast and engaged audience is still simply too large for creatives to ignore as they seek to promote their work and build their personal brands,” says Rachel Ramsay, Social Media Manager at Envato.
TikTok is not just a platform for sharing catchy dance routines, it’s now a huge part of companies’ marketing strategies.
It is the go-to social platform for short-form video content – a format that grows in popularity by the day. This is the platform to use if you want to stay on top of digital marketing trends and consumer behavior.
“TikTok is used by 30.25% of the world’s internet users – that’s over 1 billion active monthly users globally. On average, users spend 90 minutes a day on the app. Having a presence on TikTok as part of your marketing strategy is becoming as important as coming up in Google Search results,” says Hannah Copeland, Senior Social Media Specialist at Envato.
30% of TikTok’s audience can be found only on TikTok – they don’t have accounts on Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, or any other social media platform, so brands not on the platform, are missing out.
The popular platform is all about experimentation and you can make your content stand out from the ever-growing crowd by using filters, stickers, voiceovers, sound effects, and background music.
If you want to learn more about TikTok and how customers are using it then check out this article by Hannah, Envato’s senior social media specialist.
TikTok is no longer exclusively for teenagers sharing dance routines. It’s a seriously influential advertising and marketing channel that brands are actively investing in.
What can I create to meet demand in search for items related to social media?
As we said, social media continues to dominate searches on Elements. As our love for consuming online content grows, we see this as the perfect opportunity for Authors to create items with different social media channels in mind.
Social media templates are in high demand. In fact, we’ve seen a rise in searches for Instagram templates as customers seek out beautiful and versatile Instagram templates to save time and help their accounts stand out.
This Instagram Stories pack by Toucan-Motion is a great example of what customers are searching for. The neon colors and transitions used in this pack are bright and eye-catching! We love the grungy look and feel, so it’s no wonder that this pack has been an absolute hit with customers recently.
We love this abstract stories pack by video template Author, Lemtal. Using the nostalgia trend as inspiration, these templates use funky retro colors and patterns to make stories stand out from the crowd. “Video templates like this one help customers to create high-quality content that they may not be able to produce themselves,” explains Mark Brodhuber, Envato’s Video Content Specialist.
For customers looking to crack TikTok, this eye-catching video template by Typo-land is simple yet effective and allows customers to show off their TikTok channel by adding simple text-based calls to action, like ‘follow me!’.
While this After Effects TikTok pack is great for helping customers to build engagement. It comes with 5 categories to encourage people to interact with the channel and uses UI animation to create an immersive and enjoyable user experience.
It is becoming increasingly competitive for brands and individuals to achieve cut-through on TikTok with original and innovative content. Envato Elements can help lift creator’s ideas and execution.
Hannah Copeland, Senior Social Media Specialist at Envato
So, you’ve learned all there is to know about social media and customer demand but what does this mean for you as an Envato Author? It means being mindful of the different social platforms when creating your content. Also, think about how social media can help you as a creative, to help grow your brand and business.