For those who are worn out from the habitual social media platforms that are Facebook and Twitter, here’s a look at a few up-and-coming social networks that marketers and users should become familiar with.
First on the list is Snapchat. Snapchat is a photo messaging application that allows users to take photos, record videos, add text and drawings, and send them to a controlled list of recipients. These sent photographs and videos are known as “Snaps”. Users set a time limit for how long recipients can view their Snaps (1 to 10 seconds), after which they will be hidden from the recipient’s device and deleted from Snapchat’s servers. Vocus, a cloud-based marketing and public relations company, published a report on Snapchat’s marketing potential by explaining that, “Brands can set up profiles on the network and add users as friends, who opt into the brand’s messages by accepting.” The report also discusses how Snapchat’s young user base makes it an attractive platform for brands with a young demographic (whose purchasing power is rapidly growing) to reach out and engage customers.
Next is the mobile dating app Tinder. Tinder is an app that pulls your photo and basic information from your Facebook account. Users can swipe “yes” or “no” to potential matches who are nearby. If the feeling is mutual, people can chat within the app. Tinder also offers great marketing potential for brands. The app has experimented very little with advertising, but not because it doesn’t want to. Tinder is a hybrid app the encompasses features of both social networking sites as well as dating sites, so it’s target demographic varies depending on who’s using the app, and for what reasons. Still, its brand integration has room for tremendous growth.
Lastly, we have Vine. Vine is a short-form video sharing service that allows users to record and edit six-second long video clips, which can then be published through Vine’s social network and shared on other services such as Facebook and Twitter. Vine’s app can also be used to browse through videos posted by other users, along with groups of videos by theme, and trending videos. The social networking app has become increasingly popular, especially since Twitter purchased the video clip company in 2012 for a reported $30 million. And, as is the case with most popular social platforms, advertisers and marketers are looking for a way to get in, and make money, on the action. Currently, advertisers are tapping popular personalities and characters on Vine to make microcommercials in the same spirit and style that made the social media account popular in the first place. Furthermore, Vine’s short six-second-loop video format makes it easy for companies to film, upload, and share videos to social media. According to a piece done by Fast Company, The 7th Chamber stated that five tweets a second contain a Vine link, and studies are showing that a branded Vine is four times more likely to be seen than a branded video; any brand not onboard with Vine risks losing out on some serious social media exposure.
All in all, with the daily explosion of startups, there are plenty of new social media tools popping up. These newer platforms could be working on the next big thing, so you’ll want to keep an eye out.