city skyline lit with pink and blue neon light. Billboards on the buildings display icons from instagram. Text overlaid: "Top instagram trends"

Top Instagram Trends for 2021

Written By Dora
March 10, 2020

Sometimes it is hard to navigate on social media as this part of the digital world always goes through changes. New social media trends are crucial to follow to get your business to grow at a fast pace.

It’s obvious that following Instagram trends, or social media trends in general works when small, newly established companies such as Empirical are recording huge following and engagement.

They used social media to gain popularity and make their business grow. It worked! Their profit has increased, and they have overgrown some bigger “fishes” in the industry.

Moreover, according to the study, 85% of Generation Z uses social media to learn about new products, which mostly leads to purchasing them online.

When it comes to millennials, 75% are influenced in the decision-making process by what they see on Instagram.

That is why we will shed light on the newest Instagram trends, few non-Instagram trends, and what they mean for the future of social media within this article.

Table of Contents

We’ve gathered a list of popular movements on social media, especially Instagram in 2021. We divided them into 2 main categories – business-oriented trends and society-oriented trends

Get your notebook ready and note all the trends you want to try out!

Augmented Reality (AR) brings real life to our screens and now it has come to social media too. It’s one of the most popular Instagram trends as anyone with a smartphone can experiment with AR creations in their daily use of social media.

There are different forms of AR that businesses can use. The most common examples of Augmented Reality in social media are:

  • Filters, lenses, and stickers to be applied live
  • Interactive maps (Pokemon Go)
  • Interactive product display (IKEA)
  • Emojis based on your own appearance

AR allows us to see things through our screens that are not there in real life. Thanks to it, marketers can provide more interaction with their brand to the audience. There is a huge impact of AR on social media

As an example, one of the successful AR campaigns was made by McDonald’s. They created many limited lenses that were available in specific areas. The campaign runs only in the USA and gained 12 million users and around 400 million total filter impressions.

Geolocation and limited-offer created a competition among the audience to get as many snaps as possible. 

McDonald's Snapchat geo-filters campaign
McDonald’s geo-filters campaign. Image by shortyawards

There are multiple ways to get started with AR on social media, so make sure to check them out and try to implement them into your social media marketing:

Create branded filters, objects, and lenses

A brand can create an interaction for its customers by using personal filters or lenses. By creating these stickers, brands can increase their visibility on social media. If done right, they can even go viral just with their AR stickers.

Social media platforms where you can create branded AR filters, objects, stickers, and lenses:

  • Instagram
  • TikTok
  • Snapchat

Augmented Reality in Social Media shopping

Businesses especially can use the power of this Instagram trend. Marketers can increase the interactivity of their shoppable products by implementing the try-on function driven by AR.

This allows customers to try your product in different variations before buying them.

Multiple clothing and cosmetic brands are starting the try-on of their virtual products. These brands have seen positive results in their sales numbers and customer engagement, and fewer returns.

Sephora virtual artist
Sephora Virtual Artist, image by chipchick

Social media platforms that support Social shopping and AR:

  • Facebook
  • Instagram

Augmented reality ads in Social Media

Recently, Facebook decided to implement AR into its Ads Manager so that companies can promote their products innovatively.

Just a few brands are using AR ads, and just a few markets are supporting AR ads. That is why it is great to try it out and be one of the “innovators” of this new trend!

michel kors lenses for virtual shopping
Micheal Kors AR campaign. Image by The Outcast Agency

Social media platforms that support AR ads:

Personalized marketing is all about getting a tailored message to the individual. Personalization is not only one of the best Instagram trends, but one of the best digital marketing trends in general.

Companies are using databases to gather all information about customers’ preferences, actions which can be later used to target them specifically. This is the future of social media.

Marketing is getting away from general messages and big audiences. It is not about everyone anymore. It is about personalized advertising to your customers, and social media is not an exception.

Personalized marketing activities in social media can be seen in tailored content recommendations.

An example of personalization on SoMe:

  • Spotify – Discover Weekly – based on the user’s history
  • Instagram retargeting ads
  • “Rainy day? buy this jacket” – using geo-location (weather forecast) in advertisements
graphic with the screens of spotify featured to display their personalization
Spotify’s Discover Weekly user personalization

Retargeting can be a great way to personalize your marketing efforts if your firm is running ads on social media platforms. Retargeting campaigns allow reaching out to already interested visitors.

How to become more personalized as a brand? 

The brand that wants to use personalized marketing needs to start collecting a database about its customers’ demographics. By using technology like algorithms and automation, it is possible to get tailored marketing out there. 

One of the available tools is OptinMonster. It allows the company to follow a user’s behaviour on the eCommerce websites.

This tool can track unfinished shopping carts or particular products in which the client was interested but didn’t purchase.

Furthermore, this allows reaching the prospects on the social media channels they hang out with retargeting – which is a type of online advertising that is primarily based on previous consumers’ actions on the web.

Example of product customization on social media

One useful example of successful product customization on social media comes from Coca-cola.

Coca-cola is famous for its stunning marketing ad campaigns. One of their greatest examples is a personalized social media campaign – the Coca-cola bottle. They run this marketing campaign all around the world, using specific names for the countries.

Moreover, Coca-cola gave the option of customizing the bottle on their website. Customers could create unique and original gifts for their family and friends.

Personalisation with coca cola bottles
Personalized Coca-Cola bottles, image by Coca-Cola

Automation, in any kind of department, allows faster and more efficient work. Most companies have numerous accounts on social media. Keeping track of all of them takes a lot of time and human resources. That’s why it’s one of the most impactful trends for Instagram, Facebook, or any social media.

Once you unlock the possibilities of automation, your workflow will be much more efficient. And that is much needed, in a world where 12 hours of work are not enough!

infographic representing the amount of time a marketer spends online versus the average internet user
Image created in-house

According to the study, 41% of marketers spend more than 11 hours weekly managing social media.

That is why, when it comes to marketing, it is crucial to use tools for scheduling posts or analyzing data. That is your first step towards social media automation.

How to automate your marketing? 

There are many tools available on the market. Certain tools will be used for overall marketing automation, while others can be used for specifically automating social media posts – scheduling, publishing, organizing, etc.

Some great examples of easy-to-use Social Media automation tools include:

  • Hootsuite – Social media scheduling tool
  • Buffer– Social media scheduler
  • Socialert– Social media listening tool
  • BuzzSumo– Streamlined trending social media content discovery tool

When talking about scheduling social media posts, most tools will support social media platforms like:

  • Facebook
  • YouTube
  • WordPress
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • TikTok

Tools are a fantastic solution in case companies don’t want to post social media content natively, but choose to schedule instead. So, in case you are pro-automation, these tools are something that should definitely be taken into consideration.

[Related post: 60+ Powerful Marketing Tech Stack Examples]

Another growing Instagram trend is using it as a customer service tool. Most of the businesses have their Facebook or Instagram accounts. Social media today is all about customer service.

Social media is not only used to promote the company, but also to offer customer support. More and more customers prefer to reach out via social media, rather than via traditional email or phone contact. 

This trend can give a competitive advantage to smaller companies, who still can truly respond to every customer, as there assumingly is less volume of incoming messages.

The trend of using chatbots is booming. Larger brands are already using chatbots as a way of finding a more automatic, efficient way to interact with their users.

For those worried that chatbots may be lacking human touch, don’t worry! The technology progressed enough to have created software that is almost indiscernible from humans.

Chatbots are a great solution for companies to stay present on the platforms where their customers are.

Furthermore, being open to users’ messages/comments is a good way to avoid bad reviews on websites such as TrustPilot. People are more inclined to “confront” the company if they know that someone will react to it. 

Infographic representing the different response rates on social media
Image created in-house

Up to 60% of people respond to chatbot messages, in comparison to 30-40% opening an email in their inbox. That is why chatbots are the future of every company.

Some of the leading chatbot developers include:

Geolocation is another piece of popular Instagram trends. It allows targeting customers within a specific area. For example, it can help with analyzing a particular place in terms of who interacts in which manner on social media. 

There are two perspectives on this trend:

  • Organic geolocation
    Organic geolocation is when the user is looking for something, and the results are based on the distance to this user’s location. For example, Google Maps suggested places.
  • Paid geolocation
    Paid geolocation, allows marketers to target specific locations. Location targeting can be easily set on Instagram. For example, student subscription ads may be advertised only in the area of universities in their favorite social networks.

Professional marketers use a combination of retargeting and paid geolocation to activate their ad campaigns.

Besides geolocation, there are a plethora of other relevant social media tools that can be beneficial for successful social media marketing, so make sure to check them out!

A man holding a tablet with a map on it virtually pointing at different locations.
Image by Developer Here

How to use geolocation?

Geolocation can be used in two different ways and for two different incentives.

Firstly, companies can use geolocation to target people who are more likely to be interested in their products. You can target people at a specific location at a given time.

This allows having more optimized ads for a lower cost.

Secondly, geotargeting can be used for increasing sales. One of the known examples of using a location for marketing is the Coca-Cola vending machines.

In one-third of them, they installed facial recognition and contactless payment to understand who their customers are, and how they think.

Furthermore, it helped Coca-cola to cut the cost of the not-so-popular vending machines, and to optimize their profit.  

coca cola vending machine
Coca-Cola’s vending machines. Image by NeONBRAND

Instagram is full of trends that bring value to individuals and companies, but this one is especially attractive for businesses.

This new version of content is creating trust, promotion, and it may drive sales. As it is not paid, potential customers are more likely to believe in one’s brand if they see it on private profiles of people who are similar to them.

User-generated content is trending on Instagram because it grabs the attention of potential customers. People want to see something that is real, rather than something fake promoted. With user-generated content companies are ensuring an honest and reliable recommendation.

How to handle user-generated content on social media? 

The most common way of creating user-generated content is through social media posting. The company should keep track of how and by whom the company is mentioned. On platforms like Twitter or Instagram, many brands tend to repost positive reviews of their products/services.

Still, the question arises! Why should brands use user-generated content?

The answer is simple: It keeps both parties satisfied!

People’s private profiles are getting exposure, meanwhile, the company itself gains trust.

Moreover, such companies do not need to think too much about the content, as users are providing them with it. User-generated content can have a great impact on social media for businesses.

Out of all the Instagram trends, this one requires the least effort while bringing amazing results!

graphic displaying images from the social media account of swapfiets
Instagram post of swapfietsDK. Image from Instagram

Artificial Intelligence is visible in almost every industry, including marketing. One of the concepts of AI in marketing is to understand the customer and then predict its behavior.

Combining data analytics and machine learning makes marketing campaigns more efficient and precise. 

We have seen great examples of AI used to optimize social media advertisements. AI can suggest better copies and visual combinations for ads, optimal times to advertise, and which demographics to reach. The outcome of efficient ads is that one’s ROI will increase.

In case you are wondering how you can start with AI in social media, one great example is Post Intelligence, a company that has developed an application ‘PI’ that keeps track of trends, as well as predicts user’s behavior in the context of engagement and recommendations based on their history on social media.

Growth hacking allows us to achieve more while working less. This also applies to social media. For more information, have a look at our recent blog post on AI tools for growth hacking.

Robot asimo - artificial intelligence
Artificial Intelligence. Image by Franck V

Live streaming means producing real-time content. This gives the viewers – aka potential customers – a feel of authenticity and honesty.

This phenomenon is trending all over popular platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook.

Many platforms start to implement live tools, such as LinkedIn that implemented a tool where users can become an “influencer” to start the journey of streaming. 

Social media live streaming can be very beneficial, both for B2C and B2B markets.

  • B2C is especially visible on platforms such as Instagram, where companies interact directly with their potential buyers.
  • B2B is mainly seen on LinkedIn, where different businesses try to catch the attention by streaming live.

How to get Live on SoMe?

One of the successful examples is the Royal Caribbean campaign – #ComeSeekLive. They chose macro-influencers to stream their travels on the cruise’s social media. This led to many new followers for both the influencer and the cruise company!

royal Caribbean advertisement - come seek live campaign
Come Seek Live Campaign. Image by Royal Caribbean

Another useful method is using real-time content, which makes customers urged to watch it and follow the brand as they do not want to miss something limited. Real-time content can be defined by the time-relevance of the publication to a relevant happening. 

But Instagram trends alone can get you only so far. Broaden your social media efforts with Twitter.

Twitter is one of the most used platforms in terms of engagement and real-time marketing. Potential reach and impressions are much higher than on other social media.

With only 280 characters you can spread your message, tag others, and mention them.

Twitter is a great place to interact with your followers fast while reaching a wide audience. People want to stay updated and informed. That is why this platform is great to spread messages frequently and regularly to boost your social media presence.

One example of fantastic use of Twitter is Burger King! Burger King’s Twitter account is famous thanks to its real-time marketing via viral tweets.

Their marketing department works hard to be the first one to refer to something an audience is all about. One of the examples is their answer to Donald Trump’s tweet.

Graphic containing tweets from donald trump and burger king
Tweet by Donald Trump, image by Twitter

The next one of Instagram trends is running ads on Instagram instead of Facebook.

Even though Facebook has the most users among all other platforms, marketers are starting to focus on companies’ advertising on other social media platforms.

New platforms are not only gaining popularity in organic search results, but also in paid search results!

graphic representation of the paid and unpaid conversion rates of different social media platforms.

Another factor is that Instagram and Pinterest users are spending more users of Facebook – The average order value on Facebook is 69$ while Instagram is recording 103$ and Pinterest as high as 154$

Besides, according to a recent study, Instagram has a median engagement rate of 1.60%, in comparison to Facebook that only has 0.09%.

Marketers are aware of it, and that is why they start to be more open to having social media advertisements on different platforms. 

One good tip for running ads on Instagram and making them successful is to analyze companies’ SoMe and test the ads before running. It is all about choosing the right platforms to get the most impressions and engagement possible.

These processes can be done through ad optimization.

For instance, if it is Instagram, then marketers should consider the mobile layout of the ad – as most users prefer the mobile version over a desktop version.

Running tests and optimizing the ad will be a good solution to avoid mistakes and therefore weak results. 

social media apps
Social media apps, image by Kon Karampelas

11. Be on the lookout for “niche” social media apps

Currently, there are thousands of new applications released every day. Of course, no marketer can be on top of all of them.

That is why it is important to find an app that suits your industry. As an example, a food community app can be a good way to get new customers for businesses proposing new diets, superfoods, etc. 

For example, we are seeing a significant increase in the popularity of apps. They can be the next big social media platforms:

It may appear to be unnoticeable, but these apps have gathered large and active user bases. Marketers should follow the next “niche apps “, as they may be the next TikTok!

Therefore, find an application that is complementary, or in the same industry, as your business. Those apps may have your target group as daily users, which gives a higher chance of users being interested in your ad.

A great example of a niche app is the meetup app – a niche application that organizes and allows joining different offline group meetings.

This kind of app can be a good place for promoting events or places to hang out. It shouldn’t be considered a competitor or substitute, but rather a complimentary business

graphic with the meetup logo and a hand holding a phone with the meetup app open
Image by meetup

12. VR is a new reality for Social Media 

Every user on social media likes to see images, but nowadays people tend to engage more with videos. The next step is Virtual Reality.

VR allows showing places in the way pictures or videos cannot depict them. That is why this way of marketing is popular in showing places, specific situations, actions. The viewer can feel like he or she is there – in the middle of it.

Facebook tried to answer this trend and launched Facebook 360 – a hub for 360-degree media. Moreover, they helped their users by allowing capturing moments in 360 with only using their application. 

#FindYourJourney campaign

There are two ways of setting up your social media for virtual reality and they are:

  • 360-degree video for social media

    Many marketers are trying to be original and unique. They come up with many ideas to surprise their audience. A good way to do it is to produce 360-degree video campaigns.

    According to the study, the audience more believes (12% increase) that the brand story is unique when implementing a VR marketing campaign.
onfographic demonstrating the response rates across social media platforms
Image created in-house
  • VR video campaign

    Among the most tools used to produce a VR video campaign is Omnivirt. This VR ad network allows a marketer to easily follow the technology behind the campaign to achieve the most successful ad campaign.  

    One successful example of incorporating VR in advertising is Toms. They became finalists of ShortyAwards thanks to their VR experience of giving shoes to children in need. Customers were able to try the shoes on in the physical shops of the company.
TOMs VR campaign
Toms VR Campaign, image by Digital Edition

Customers are no longer following every brand they know. Today, they have become pickier, and they choose the ones which are unique, honest, and interesting to watch. Brands are always trying to produce content that will get the most impressions and engagement on social media.

However, to truly take advantage of this Instagram trend, content must be cohesive to the company’s personality. That is how brands create one coherent message to their users. Personalized products and/or advertisements are a megatrend. That is why every business should consider it in 2021.

In today’s marketing world there are many ways to create a brand personality. One proven method is creating a product narrative.

One of the great examples of creating a product narrative is Starbucks. Starbucks is not only focusing on their product for creating a story – a narrative of their goods. They also put focus on individuals by sharing their experiences. Moreover, they are known for quick responses to their customers on social media. 

Recently Instagram stopped showing likes for everyone except the owner of the post. Thus, companies started to consider new ways of analyzing engagement.

It is not only about likes or comments anymore. Marketers look at data from different perspectives. Things like video watch time, in-bound posts, or forwarding are crucial to see how your social media is working. 

Every company should set up its own KPIs based on its needs and goals. These can vary from shares to non-revenue conversions.

The relevant 2021 social media KPIs include:

  • Contacts made by networking
  • Abandon rate
  • Deals closed
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Landing page conversion rate

It is important to keep track of your social media activities and the main KPIs. Managing multiple accounts can be tough.

Therefore, there is a variety of useful analytics tools to help you out:

  • Salesforce, one of the most popular tools for marketers – provides an integrated CRM platform
  • An analytics and KPI tool – Tableau – also includes many KPI templates that can be used to track business effectiveness
  • Asana – a great tool to track KPIs of specific campaigns/projects
marketing measurement
Marketing Measurement, image by Carlos Muza

Videos aren’t trending only on Instagram, but every social media platform. Everyone knows that pictures catch the audience’s attention. But as we already mentioned, video content is more powerful.

Videos can be a perfect way to tell a story about your brand or product. It helps with inviting the user to relive the experience.

Moreover, if the video is interesting and sends some kind of message, it will get more shares and engagement on the platform, and may even go viral.

51% of marketers claim that video marketing is getting the best ROI among all other types of marketing on social media.

Some brands did exceptionally well with video marketing. One great example of successful video content was made by Android.

Android decided to show a shared experience by opening people’s emotions. It has a clear and simple message with a series of various animals playing together. This shows to be a good recipe for going viral

Android Campaign

Another great example of a viral video campaign was made by Reebok. Their message was to cherish every single day and to exercise no matter what age. They placed their products and logos in various places throughout the video. 

Reebok Campaign

In case you were inspired by these examples and are wondering how to start a video marketing campaign, we have prepared for you some great tips to help you out:

  1. Decide on the message you want to be spread with the campaign
  2. Make sure it is cohesive with the rest of your marketing strategy
  3. Decide on the target group
  4. Make a video
  5. Target the correct group by posting videos on the platforms they are using
  6. Follow marketing measures from the video campaign to enhance the results

It is getting harder and harder to reach your customers with organic reach. Instagram and other platforms push marketers towards paid search. But how to do it correctly?

Interactive social media ads have been around for a while now. But the trend is still here! Users do not want to engage with bad advertisements or “boring” campaigns.

That’s why it is the marketer’s task to find a way to surprise and involve the viewer by just an ad.

Dynamics in ads can be achieved in three different ways:

  • Carousel ads – There are different ways to promote a product in a new and refreshing way. One of them is a carousel ad that allows a marketer to use multiple pictures or videos and combine them into one ad. This is especially popular on Facebook and Instagram.
  • Call To Action buttons – Another way to do it is to start selling products through ads. An example is adding a button like “buy now”, with the link which redirects to the online shop with the exact product. Such effective marketing campaigns allow marketers to not only get an impression but also convert it – sell a product. 
  • Interactive ads – Lastly, we have interactive ads. Here the possibilities are endless. It can be either a form of challenge, game, or competition. The more creative the better! This kind of ad engages with potential customers. That is how the brand gets the attention that may result in a conversion.
graphic showing images coming out of a social media platform on a smart phone
Image created in-house

The social media story format started with Snapchat. Nowadays, they are trending on Instagram, Facebook, Messenger, YouTube, and many others also incorporated that into their application.

The popularity of ephemeral content is stunning.

People do not want to miss out on something that is limited. Time constraint content is booming.

The phenomenon of swiping horizontally rather than vertically means a new way of advertising too. Stories are all about sharing the experience with your followers. And that is what brands are trying to achieve as well with this new advertisement trend. 

How to leverage ephemeral content for your brand? 

Brand stories should be eye-catching to get attention. Many marketers are using stories to get more users of their articles, products, or services. They use the option of “swipe” or “see more” to get the user to their website. Notice that you can use this option only if you have more than 100.000 followers or business accounts.

Moreover, some companies use ephemeral content to share user-generated content (UGC) or to get the user closer by showing “behind the scenes” or backstage material. 

Another way is to share promotions, discounts, or limited offers as a kind of reward for following the brand on social media. 

Users are getting more aware now of the results of excessive usage of social media. That is why there is a trend of decreasing one’s time spent on different SoMe platforms.

Some people choose to take a social media detox, which usually means being logged off from your accounts for 30 days.

Thanks to the IOS update, people can now easily check how much time they spend daily on their phones.

Smartphone users start to understand how much time they are losing on “pointless” scrolling through different platforms. 

What does it mean for companies? People only want to see high-quality, meaningful content. They tend to skip something which they do not find interesting. That is a great challenge for brands. 

a smart phone screen logging out of a social media account

19. TikTok *boom*

This entertainment platform is getting more and more popular.

At first, it was considered a platform for younger audiences, but now their target goes up to 50 years old. Tiktok competes with Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram.

According to a recent study, TikTok has 500 million active users. Just as a comparison to their main competitor – Instagram – it took Instagram six years to get to the same user base after launching. 

Many brands are already on TikTok producing witty content including product promotion content. Chipotle, a Mexican restaurant chain, has over 50000 fans on this platform. They use popular songs in their videos to show different dishes from their menu card.

Due to its popularity nowadays it is extremely useful for companies to learn how to get started on TikTok. Introducing this platform to your social media marketing is a proven way to securing traffic increase organically!

tik tok application
Tik Tok application, image by Kon Karampelas

To understand this Instagram trend correctly, it is important to clarify the difference between these two influencer types. Micro popularity starts from 10.000 to 100.000 followers, whereas macro popularity implies 100.000 or more followers.

Influencer marketing has been with us for a while now. However, the current trend is shifting from macro to micro influencers.

One of the arguments is cost savings. Micro-persona will not charge a lot for including one’s brand on their social media, as they do not have a wide audience.

Moreover, this group of “SoMe authorities” has more trust and authenticity in their followers. Micro-influencers have a 7 times higher engagement rate according to this study.

And we believe that it’s crucial to make your brand stand out. People on social media seek honesty and true reviews.

Most sponsored content is already met with disapproval, as users tend to be suspicious about the quality and truth of such recommendations.

Companies are aware of it, and that is why they tend to switch from macro- to micro-influencers. 

If you are unsure how to choose the right influencers, make sure to follow the following steps:

  • Find influencers who share similar values to your brand
  • Check their metrics correctly – not only the number of followers but also their engagement
  • Estimate your budget on this campaign before contacting the persona
  • Research more – and then decide the best option(s) for you!
By Giphy

Social eCommerce is a combination of social media and e-shopping. Social eCommerce happens within an app.

This new trend allows having a smoother, more streamlined customer journey – and thus less risk of losing the customer between different websites.

Here influencer marketing plays an important role. Often influencers are a great way to convince a follower to get to the companies’ online shop. In exchange, these influencers usually get a percentage of the purchases done thanks to their backlink.

So, how to activate social eCommerce? One thing a company can do is add the product to user’s feed!

One of the greatest potential platforms to start a brand’s eCommerce must be Instagram. This social medium decided to include the purchase option by using tags on images, as well as a “shop now” button.

Instagram users usually look for beautiful content, friends’ experiences, and/or some inspiration on their feed. That is why trying to incorporate companies’ products in those frames can have a very successful conversion rate.

A shopping card with two people in it and the Instagram logo on the right. The text says: Instagram - the new face of ecommerce.
Image by Responsentry

The social listening trend is not just a one-to-one conversation between the customer and the brand. It is about listening to the whole industry to get a better understanding of what marketing actions to choose.

It also allows us to have a better insight into customer’s behavior – what he or she needs, thinks, and wants – the customer journey. Social listening is about creating a bigger picture rather than focusing on one or two impressions.

Every company should know what their users are talking about on different social media. When the brand promotes different products, it is important to categorize them.

Besides product categorization, it is essential to collect impressions and mentions. Then divide them into negative and positive. When it comes to the industry – also tracking competitors’ actions and the overall behavior of customers may be beneficial for the company.

One of the most known tools as a response to this trend is Sprout Social.

graphic including 3 stock images of people using their computers. Text overlaid: "social listening"
Image created in-house

Another new trend in social media is brand loyalty. Companies are no longer interested in numbers of followers or likes as much as they are in having a long-term follower who believes in the brand.

Customers who love the brand are more likely to honestly engage with it, which gives great potential to the company.

Marketers also know that a smaller group of followers, rather than a big number, is much more valuable. Only the ones who are loyal to a brand will persuade others and leave positive reviews (without requiring any special rewards). 

How to improve brand loyalty? 

Customers are now more than ever looking for more from their brands. They want to feel special and appreciated in order to stay loyal to the company. Therefore, to secure customer loyalty, here are a few things you can do:

  • Be consistent on social media – The company should start with a marketing strategy – where and how they want to be visible. 2021 is all about one’s consistency on all social media platforms
  • Brand communication as a two-way street – Users prefer to see personalized content and human interactions over bots. Communication with followers should be a two-way street, rather than a one-way. This gives the chance to acknowledge more problems and/or suggestions from customers.   

Lastly, if brand loyalty is growing, marketers can expect user-generated content that of course should be shared on companies’ SoMe accounts.

brand loyalty meme
Image by Makeameme

Instagram is owned by Facebook, which is one of the reasons why every marketer was “expecting” this trend at some point: Facebook lost its organic search a couple of years ago, now it is time for Instagram.

The reason for that is quite easy – the owners of these platforms want companies to implement paid ads and sponsored posts.

Paid search is an easy way to get more audience. But the problem is that this kind of audience is usually not the best one. That is why we suggest “fight” to remain in organic search because even though it will be hard, it is still possible and effective. 

To increase organic search on social media brands should strive towards achieving the following:

  • Quality vs quantity content – The quality of the companies’ content is crucial here. The more it resonates with the viewers, the better the chances of success are for the company. Some companies focus on the visuals of every post, whereas others choose user-generated content.

    With increasing quality, the quantity should also increase. Statistically speaking, the better the content a brand posts, the more the audience is likely to get.
  • Timing of posting – Moreover, timing is important. There are many tools that can analyze which time of posting is the best tailored to each account, for example, Buffer.

    Besides, a company can increase its traffic by sharing posts on other social media platforms. 
social media platforms
Social media platforms, image by Austin Distel

Even though there are more than 100 countries, everybody is united in terms of protecting their own data on the Internet. The audience expects to know exactly how their data is handled, and to what extent they are protected. With this trend, GDPR came to life.

To make sure the data is collected correctly, every company should analyze which data they collect and if they need it. The more data you gather, the less customer satisfaction you’re likely to accomplish.

One thing not to miss when gathering relevant data is managing it using GDPR. Marketers should establish a clear and transparent policy that helps to gain customer trust. It is all about long-term customer loyalty.

The EU GDPR is a way to make sure that companies are managing data ethically and correctly. 

gdpr meme
Image by Meme Generator

26. A brand community is on social media

Social media is not anymore about persuading customers that they need some product or service. It is about creating the “we” relationship. This new way of interaction gives customers a place to share, discuss, and experience the brand.

It is one of the best strategies to have a good customer retention.

For smaller brands, Facebook groups can be a good start to create a community. This marketing strategy can also help company owners to understand customer behavior, which can be used in other campaigns. 

One of the strategies to use when creating a community is focusing on customer engagement and experience.

One of the greatest examples is the LEGO community, called Ideas. This platform gives a chance for a customer to become a designer. Projects with the most votes go into production. This community helps users to get more engaged, and hence have a deeper experience with the LEGO brand.

Lego also created a Facebook fan page – Lego Ideas – that provides Facebook users with the ability to vote on newly proposed projects. Besides, Lego has a Facebook group for fans who want to share their new innovative ideas.

Such communities are a great way to keep customers in the “loop.” 

lego ideas community
Lego Ideas community, image by Lego Ideas

27. It is all about trust in social media 

As we already mentioned, customers want to have an honest and trustful interaction with brands. Companies know that they cannot lie or mislead customers in a digitalized world, where everyone can access everything.

Digital customer interaction is usually a way to execute companies’ corporate social responsibility.

Trust is one of the main indicators if a user is choosing one specific brand in the sea of substitutes. There are so many competitors, which makes it hard to market one’s product as unique. That is why honesty and trust can come as key selling points. 

Trust can go a long way in securing stable and long-lasting relationships with customers and improving customer loyalty.

Therefore, companies should ensure to focus on the following aspects:

  • Use customer testimonials – One of the ways to gain trust is by showing other users’ positive experiences – with positive and reliable reviews accompanied by user-generated content.
  • Brand response matters – Furthermore, the time of response to customers’ problems is also important, as this can signal that the brand genuinely cares about its customers.

Finally, as we mentioned above, a proper manner of data handling can also result in more follower trust. 

GIF by Tenor

28. New perspective on content marketing 

Successful content marketing is no longer only about the number of likes or views. Nowadays, everyone expects high-quality content which resonates with the followers. No one wants to look at posts they will forget in a few seconds.

People dislike meaningless scrolling through different platforms. They cherish their time more, which is why they are on a hunt for good-quality content. 

In order to keep up with the content marketing trends of 2021, marketing departments should focus on:

  • Integrating with followers – Think of the brand’s social media as a way to communicate and integrate with potential customers, rather than seeing it as just a promotional platform.
  • Creating a brand narrative – Creating a relevant and interesting platform is key to success. Focus on what the customers want to get from reading company posts.

    The storytelling of the brand can be a great way to provide valuable experiences and positively surprise the users. 
2 hands hold a smart phone, out of the screen of the smart phone comes mist with logos and the word "content" in it
Image create in-house


We hope our list will help you navigate on your social media platforms. 

Social media is an ever-changing part of the Internet. Incorporating some of the booming trends mentioned can be a great way to become more visible via your platforms. 

The megatrend of 2021 is high-quality, honest content. People want to feel like a part of the brand, and they want to be heard.

Remember, you are not alone: everyone is trying to find the best marketing strategy. Start experimenting from today on social media and find your way to success in 2021!  

What are your thoughts on this year’s trends? Let us know below. 

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  1. Aldrin Noer

    Like the overview that mentioned and shows in this website

  2. debora

    Great Article. Its really informative and innovative. Thanks for sharing.


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