Sarah Schiltz takes a photo for social media

Navigating The Changing World of Social Media

Think of your favorite Tik­Tok trend right now. I guar­an­tee we’re think­ing of two dif­fer­ent things, because from the time I’m writ­ing this to the time you’re read­ing it, what’s pop­u­lar on the plat­form will have changed entire­ly. This con­stant change is a hall­mark of social media that for some makes it excit­ing, while for oth­ers makes it a headache. How­ev­er, there are some great ways to stay up to date on social media changes and updates to help your strat­e­gy stay cur­rent and relevant.

Spend time on social media.

This might seem obvi­ous, but it is absolute­ly the most cru­cial step in mon­i­tor­ing any changes sweep­ing across plat­forms (so yes, I am giv­ing you per­mis­sion to scroll Insta­gram at work – at least for a lit­tle while!). Being active on social means you can catch trends in real-time and par­tic­i­pate them before they go stale and see changes as they are implemented.

Fol­low oth­ers in the indus­try and join online communities.

I often find that the first place I hear about an algo­rithm change is from some­one else in the field I fol­low on LinkedIn or X (for­mer­ly Twit­ter). A few of my per­son­al favorite peo­ple to keep up with are Jon-Stephen Stansel, Annie-Mai, and local pro Arik Han­son (I also sat down with Arik last year to talk all things social – be sure to check out the post!). I’m also an active mem­ber of a few online com­mu­ni­ties – the Women in Mar­ket­ing group on Face­book is par­tic­u­lar­ly help­ful and a great place to share insights on social and beyond.

Incor­po­rate social lis­ten­ing and Google Trends.

Social lis­ten­ing is track­ing key­words or phras­es across social media, and is a pow­er­ful way to not only stay on top of what peo­ple across social are say­ing about your brand, but what they’re talk­ing about in gen­er­al. Google Trends is a fre­quent­ly vis­it­ed book­mark for me, as it’s a great resource to help man­age ever-chang­ing con­ver­sa­tion topics.

Sub­scribe to newsletters.

You may be think­ing, “anoth­er thing in my inbox?” but hear me out – these are great ways to learn about social media news and algo­rithm changes in real­ly digestible for­mats. A few favorites of mine are the Geek­out Newslet­ter, Social Media Today and Social Media Examiner.

Fol­low your own data.

Pay close atten­tion to what your own data is telling you. Are you sud­den­ly see­ing a drop in engage­ments? Get a burst of fol­low­ers each time you post a short-form video? Track­ing the behav­iors of your own fans and fol­low­ers can pro­vide valu­able insight into what changes are hap­pen­ing across social plat­forms, and you can then craft and rework your strat­e­gy based on the data you’re seeing.

Out­source it.

I get it – this can still seem daunt­ing. Luck­i­ly, there are peo­ple who love this kind of stuff. Look­ing at a part­ner that can help nav­i­gate and guide you through all the changes and ensure your strat­e­gy is keep­ing up with – and even stay­ing ahead of – trends can be a huge relief to your team.

Remem­ber that Tik­Tok trend I had you think of at the begin­ning of this blog? Yep, there’s prob­a­bly some­thing new on the plat­form already. Luck­i­ly, there are sev­er­al resources avail­able and tac­tics you can imple­ment to make keep­ing up with social media trends a lit­tle less scary and a lot more fun.

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