Many social networks are going through trying times: Facebook’s reputation has suffered a lot in recent months, the once-fashionable Snapchat in the first quarter of 2018 shows the slowest growth in history, and rumors of Twitter’s death are continuing to be even now. Nevertheless, despite all the scandals surrounding user data leaks, social networks are with us for a long time, so it’s worth trying to predict how they will evolve over the next five years.
Video Content Sharing Will Increase Rapidly
Last January, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that in the future, video will be the first priority of the social network. Two months later, the company published a study on content consumption on Facebook and Instagram, which showed that users spend five times more time watching video than static content. After that, there were reports that the corporation is ready to spend about a billion dollars on the original content for Facebook TV.
According to Hubspot, marketers are also keen to focus on video and are willing to spend most of the campaign budgets on YouTube and video on Facebook. Against this background, no one is surprised that Instagram launches its own television and officially recognizes vertical videos – these are not just familiar “Stories”.
According to forecasts, as early as 2019, video will account for 80% of all traffic on the Internet, and we should expect that this trend will continue and develop: here is the appearance of the square video, live broadcasts, and the combination of video with virtual reality technology.
Blockchain-based Social Media will Change Content Monetization
Decentralized social networks are the logical answer to the uncontrolled dissemination of personal data, and although such services have not yet gained popularity, they are preparing to topple Facebook from its pedestal in the future.
For example, the Monoreto social blockchain platform tries to monetize likes — for each of them the user receives tokens.
New Digital Types of Content will Appear
In the report for 2018, Mary Meeker internet forecaster, speaking of new types of content that appear on digital platforms, mentioned the Twitch social service, which broadcasts a live video. According to Meeker, the distribution of streaming is forcing us to expand the understanding of how content is.
The explosion of video popularity is also likely to lead to a greater spread of virtual and additional reality — in a continuous battle for the attention of users, more and more services will turn to similar content.
Niche Social Networks will Appear
Although the big six – Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat — will not disappear, the growth of niche social networks of all kinds, which began in 2017, will continue. For example, for those who do not want to remain on the Camband Analytica platform after data collection of Facebook users scandal, there are DDiaspora and Mastodon — these are decentralized networks with installations on many sites that allow you to download all your data at any time.
For designers, printers or illustrators who are looking for a place to put their portfolios and communicate with like-minded people, there is Dribbble — a community for creative people with almost half a million users.
Business-oriented Messaging Apps will Evolve
The audience of messengers is still growing — in the USA, the number of users of the four leading messengers increased to 4.1 billion in 2018, and by 2019 eMarketer expects 65% of the world’s population will use messaging applications.
Leading messaging platforms will continue to develop business tools that automate and improve customer interaction.