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What to Expect from Social Media in 2018

Updated: May 31, 2020

using mobile phone

Industry experts weigh in with their predictions

[A Guest Blog Post for Ripl Customers] By: Louise Upchurch | @Loulou_Uberkirk Freelance Social Media Manager & Consultant

Social Media is constantly changing and evolving. There are new updates and features being released across different platforms all the time. These new technological advancements practically ensure the landscape will look very different as we head in to 2018, but what are the new trends going to be?

I asked this question to people who work in the social media marketing industry to find out what their predictions are.


Natasha | @nplusg

This has been a remarkable year for social media as it welcomed new and innovative features and amazing advancements. Now that 2017 is coming to an end social media trends are preparing to take 2018 by storm!

For the past few years we’ve seen an incredible boost in the use of Video and Livestream by brands and I predict it won’t slow down any time soon! Livestreaming provides a more interactive and effective way of delivering valuable content to your audience. This creates a feeling of immediacy and allows for active engagement which people prefer, appreciate, and enjoy.

I would also like to mention the undeniable power of AR/AI and the unlimited opportunities it offers. 2017 saw a fair amount of AR/AI based products and I believe that in 2018 brands will focus more on new creative ways to take advantage of this technology, offering audiences a more “real life” experience when delivering their content.

The beauty of predictions is imagining the endless creative opportunities behind them.

Cat Davies

Cat Davies | @CatxDavies

CoFounder of @OurxAgency YouTuber and Social videographer Loughton. Essex

I believe that 2018 will see personalization come to the forefront of the social media experience. We have already seen some great steps by platforms in 2017 as re-targeting is becoming more sophisticated.

For example, YouTube now offers advertisers the ability to place a series of adverts in front of viewers, while LinkedIn and Facebook deliver personalized ads into messaging inboxes.

The ability to personalize your advertising and business messaging at scale is going to become a reality for businesses in 2018.

Gabriella | @CardozaGab

Personal & Corporate Brand Consultant // Experience in USA, EU & LATAM in #Branding, #Design & #Marketing // @IEBusiness @IEUniversity Boston, MA

2018 will be a year of innovation.

The advances and adoption of AR, VR, and video will play a vital role in how social media is both utilized and experienced. However, these ‘trends’ are merely the result of larger shifts within the makeup of the platforms and the users themselves.

The first of which is generational. Generation Z’s presence on social media is growing. Their interests, needs, and wants are understandably different. Immediacy, personalization and quality content are no longer a choice, but an expectation.

With an over-abundance of content at their fingertips, navigating through the noise on social platforms requires a unique ability to prioritize information. Platforms and profiles will need to be above all else: concise, clear, consistent, and creative!

Memorability is crucial too, especially when it comes to retaining users who are accessing platforms via mobile and who are consuming a tremendous of content daily. As a result, there will be a shift towards all that is interactive, multimedia, and unique social experiences.

Brands, both personal and corporate, will find success in transforming a profile into an experience by evoking emotion, personalizing interaction, and creating room for dialogue and a sense of belonging. Each platform is a community in and of itself, however sub-communities—those created via groups, chats, hashtags, etc.—will offer the most value.

For those working in social media marketing, it’ll be less about ‘community’ management and more about ‘relationship’ management. Maintaining contact with as many individual members as possible is the name of the game. The value lies in speaking directly to an audience member and transforming the feeling of being heard, to being listened to.

We can’t be 100% sure what will happen in 2018 but we can make informed predictions based on our experiences. I’m sure there will be some surprises ahead in 2018 but that’s the beauty of social media in a way. It can’t be constrained and boxed-in, it goes where the users take it and so we need to stay on top of new developments and ready for the next thing.


Louise Upchurch is a passionate and driven Freelance Social Media Manger. She has a keen interest in supporting businesses to develop a key following, build brand awareness, and maintain an engaged community online.