Marketing methods have significantly changed over the past few years. Due to the increasing use of technology, companies have had to change their communication tactics and find new ways to reach young consumers.

Many of today’s marketing strategies utilize social media platforms. In order for businesses to keep up with competitors in this hyper competitive space, they should consider these trends that experts expect to dominate the world of social media marketing in 2018.

Rather than pictures, more and more companies are focusing their marketing strategies around video content. Marketers have found video to be a more engaging platform than pictures or texts. However, it’s important for videos to show the product or service in use in order to actively engage consumers.

In addition to videos, more companies are utilizing live content platforms. Live content is a great way to get followers excited and engaged with the brand. Using live content can consist of demonstrating products, announcing events, or simply saying hello to followers.

If companies haven’t already invested in mobile ready content, they will soon. With younger generations being true digital natives, any company that doesn’t switch to mobile-friendly content is quickly going to be left behind in the marketplace. In web design, mobile-friendly sites depend on what’s called responsive web design, which has fundamentally changed the way your favorite websites are created.

The same shift is happening on social media sites, which increasingly take a mobile-first approach to content creation and design. Today, 52% of internet users say they will think less of a company with a bad mobile website, and mobile friendly content is now considered a given in the social media world. That’s why experts also predict that more companies will hire employees to focus solely on content creation for mobile users.

With the amount of time young consumers spend consuming photos, videos, memes, and gifs online, companies must ensure they post content that is created for specific platforms. In order to do that, companies have to hire experts in content-creation to manage all of the social media content. Hiring in-house talent for social media marketing is something more companies are investing in.

In order to engage followers, companies are also beginning to leverage user-generated content. By asking followers to submit pictures, posts, or videos and then uploading them to their page, companies will be able to better interact with customers.

Along with more user-generated content, companies are always expected to increase their use of influencers on social media. Brand partnerships allow companies to reach new users and can often be a cost-effective marketing tool.

With digital material often being skimmed by viewers in 15 seconds, or less, it’s becoming more difficult for companies to attract the attention of consumers online. And with younger generations knowing no time without smartphones, businesses need to step up their online activity in order to effectively engage young consumers.