Social Media: Now and Next — the video

(or Everything you needed to know about social media but were afraid sit through)

Social Media is changing. Constantly. Paradoxically, it’s also stabilising, consolidating and becoming a mature media ecosystem optimised for user engagement and Daily Active Use.

I was invited to speak at the brilliant Thinking Digital Conference 2017 to run through some of the key trends of social media platforms today, the real reasons for their emergence and the direction of travel that you should consider for your brand and your business.

What’s it all about?

Video Video Video

It’s all about video; if you aren’t making video on social media platforms now (not just YouTube), you should be — it’s a huge priority for social media platforms and essential to reach and impact audiences. Next year you’ll wish you’d already been practising getting it right this year when you really should be nailing it in 2018.

Customising Reality

Another paradox, that in a field where everyone talks about authenticity, so many social media platforms are offering more and more opportunities to wear masks. Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram are all doubling-down on augmented reality (not VR — that’s not going to be a thing for quite some time, folks, so put your wallets away!). If the camera is the new keyboard then filters are the new fonts.

Going Away Is Here To Stay

There are now two lanes for content on social media. The archived and the ephemeral. Our Instagram feeds and Facebook streams are a permanent record of classy images and promotions, but live video and 24 hour stories are the repository for authenticity and raw experiences that engage and delight audiences. The rise of stickers and filters that graffiti your images and video are symptom of this — people don’t need an archive, they just want a real experience.

Show Me The Money

Making money from emojis, from live video deals and pre-roll ads is just the beginning for social video. Consider Amazon Prime, Twitch and the video Echo as a thought starter for a holistic user-audience-customer ecosystem. There’s a lot more to come in social video and monetisation / commerce — thinking about the way these systems are pushing ahead on video and AI now will set you up better for tomorrow’s customer journeys.

I go into this in more detail, with more examples in the talk which you can watch below. All this and how real people actually use the platforms too — enjoy and let me know what you think.

If you’re interested in this and want to move forward faster in social media, I can bring this talk and more detail besides to your company / your teams. Please contact me via @danbiddle on Twitter or email my name at