Keep up with the changing social media landscape


May 16, 2017 • Paige Kauffman • Blog

Social Media

With 70 percent of the U.S. population possessing at least one social networking profile, according to Statista, it’s no secret that the social landscape is constantly growing and changing. New platforms. New techniques. New insights. It can be a challenge for even the savviest marketers to keep up, connect with their target audiences and drive business results, but it is necessary to ensure your brand remains relevant.

I recently had the opportunity to attend the Greater Kansas City Public Relations Society of America (GKC-PRSA) monthly luncheon. The topic was “Social Media Is Changing” and was presented by Justin Goldsborough, a leader in Fleishman Hillard’s Social and Digital Practice.

At the event, Justin shared five ways the social media landscape is changing that are increasingly relevant in the marketing/communications space. 

  1. Media consumption is changing: As technology has developed, so has our means of consuming media. According to Justin, we now spend 75 percent of our waking day consuming media. At first blush, this is a jaw-dropping statistic, but then I consider my daily routine. I wake up, read the Skimm, commute to work listening to the radio or a podcast, spend the day online doing research for clients or executing marketing initiatives, and so on. As it turns out, it’s not so far-fetched after all.

    As a communicator, it’s important to understand the access social media provides you to your audiences. Specifically, when integrated with paid, earned and controlled media tactics (also known as integrated marketing communications or IMC), social media has the power to help you share your message efficiently and effectively. With digital media consumption on the up and up, it’s time to meet the people who matter most to your business where they consume media.
  2. Organic Facebook reach is declining: If you’re a marketer, you know it’s become more and more challenging to scale your organic reach on Facebook. What you probably don’t know is organic reach for brands on Facebook is at an estimated 2 percent, meaning your content will only be seen by a handful of your followers. Twitter also has limited organic reach. LinkedIn and Instagram continue to decline too.

    So, what’s the solution? A paid social media strategy. Even with a limited budget, a paid effort can go a long way in getting eyeballs on your content. Whether you allocate $5 or $100, it’s important to track data to show ROI.
  3. Influencer marketing is on the rise: According to Justin, “influencer marketing is the new king.” We live in a society where we trust our peers more than brands. Engaging influencers in your industry is an effective way to earn trust and business from your target audiences. Whether you contract an influencer to guest blog, post a video or share your content on their social pages, this person has the power to extend your marketing efforts leaps and bounds.

    To find success, Justin says an effective influencer strategy must possess high-quality photos, unique content, natural product placement and text separate from the photo.
  4. LinkedIn is about more than finding a job: LinkedIn is a powerful marketing tool, especially for B2B businesses. What was once dedicated to the job search is now a networking gold mine, and a home for thought leadership. We regularly advise our clients to join LinkedIn groups, utilize LinkedIn publishing, and share regular updates. As social media continues to change, we anticipate LinkedIn becoming an even greater asset for the business community.
  5. The social media skills gap is widening: Many companies understand the value of social media, but don’t feel they use it effectively. It’s important to stay savvy and up-to-date in this realm because as the skills gap grows, your business can end up on top or outdated. If you’re looking for resources to stay on the cutting edge, I personally enjoy reading Hootsuite’s blog, as well as Social Media Examiner.

The social media playing field has changed drastically overtime. Today’s best practices are different than last year’s and might change tomorrow. If you have questions regarding social techniques and strategy, don’t hesitate to DM us on Twitter @MorningstarComm.


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