Author: Allison Zalesny, Social Media Associate
2020 was a year that no one expected. Our daily routines all changed within a blink of an eye and we’ve been navigating this “new normal” ever since. For social media marketers, this year threw us many unexpected curveballs. We had to shift strategies, scrap marketing plans, and push ourselves harder than ever before. Although 2020 was a difficult year, it also forced our RyTech Social Squad to learn, grow, and adapt professionally. After reflecting on 2020, our team compiled observations on what we've learned and how it will impact us and our clients in 2021.
Social media is not always about business. Your end goal isn’t always going to be a lead or a conversion. In 2020, we found that to be especially true. The audience on social media was simply looking for human connection. Whether it was a screenshot of a Zoom happy hour or a simple “we’re here for you” message, individuals across the globe were just looking for pockets of togetherness on social media while we could not gather together in person.
In 2021, the search for pockets of togetherness is not going anywhere. As some businesses are returning back to “normal” or adjusting to a “new normal” we want to continue to showcase the human connection, the faces behind the business.
This year, it felt more than ever like people wanted to peek behind-the-scenes of those they follow on social media. The feeling of “what’s everyone else doing?” was not limited to individuals - people were interested in businesses, too. Many customers wanted to see in real-time how their favorite businesses had adapted to keep everyone safe and continue to thrive (or survive) in an unpredictable year.
If 2020 taught us anything it’s that sometimes we need to slow down. Social media can often be very reactionary and the fear of missing out can cause Social Media Managers to want to send messages out as quickly as possible. This year showed us that sometimes that isn’t always the best course of action as misinformation and misconstrued messaging can be incredibly detrimental to a brand.
In 2021, our plan is to listen first and then react. The world is ever-changing and we can’t predict the future. What may seem like a good message now might not be a good message in the coming months, weeks, or even days. Stop, take a breath, listen to what people are saying, and then begin to craft the right message.
Humor can be a powerful tool on social media when it's relevant and appropriate, especially during challenging times (like 2020) when people crave distraction.
Businesses that publish content connecting their brand to a meme or moment in pop-culture are able to establish a feed that is more memorable, relatable, credible, and shareable. Although this may not be a part of a social media strategy for every business, it can be a way to engage followers.
If there’s one thing that 2020 has taught me, it’s to stay flexible. No, I’m not talking about being able to do the splits or put your feet behind your head, which would be pretty awesome. I’m referring to adapting your marketing strategy quickly in response to unexpected events.
In marketing, we often work to plan ahead, anticipate trends, and create strategies that push us closer to our goals, but 2020 made this almost impossible at times. Marketing strategies had to be rethought or recreated as new information, movements, and trends swept in and out like the tide. This year taught me to proactively create marketing strategies that can pivot if need be and adapted painlessly.
Looking Forward: Implementing Data-Driven Strategies
It’s safe to say that we’ve discovered and experienced a lot in regards to social media in 2020 and we’re looking forward to taking our learnings into 2021. As we continue to look at 2021 and the new year that has arrived, we are focused on developing data-driven strategies for success this year on behalf of our clients. From what we learned, we know that consumers are hungry for brand engagement, storytelling, live video, Instagram stories, and user generated content. If investing in your social media presence was on your New Years’ resolution list, schedule a free consultation with a member of our social media team. We’re happy to have the conversation!