As we embark on the New Year, let’s first pause to take a brief look back at a few social media milestones from 2013:
Video took center stage in 2013 with Twitter’s introduction of Vine – the six-second video sharing app. This new product allowed Twitter to initially “win” the social media video space. A few months after the debut of Vine, Instagram created video capability enabling users to create 15-second videos, which captivated the platform’s 150 million users.
Monetization in the form of advertisements continued to be a popular strategy for many social networks in 2013. Pinterest rolled out sponsored pins, and Instagram allowed a select few brands to sponsor ads that resulted in incredible reach and mild backlash from some users. Just a few weeks ago, Facebook announced they will launch video ads that users can expect in their newsfeed beginning next year.
While ads became more ubiquitous in 2013, functionality also improved on some social networks. Conversations on Twitter became easier to follow with this design update. Scheduling Facebook posts for business pages is now a breeze. Pins in Pinterest are now searchable (finally), and images on Twitter are displayed within the feed.
Overall in 2013, social media use grew – thanks in large part to use by older generations. Facebook, for example, saw its largest growth among those 50 and older. A year-end study from the Pew Internet & American Life Project reveals the number of adults online that are using at least one social network grew to 73%.
Given all of the new developments and excitement of the past year, what do you think is on the horizon for the social world in 2014?