Will the TikTok company grow in 2020?

Top 5 Social Media Predictions 2020: What Can We Expect Next Year?

2019 was an exciting, if often controversial, year for social media. TikTok has completely exploded in its hype and has significantly changed the social media landscape, influencer marketing is also expanding in its popularity and with the rise of other apps, Facebook, although still solid, seems shakier than ever, which was hardly a few years ago was conceivable. The question now is, of course, how things could go on in the next year. The rise of social commerce? Even stronger influencer marketing or are we facing its end? Will VR make its breakthrough in social media? In cooperation with Socialbakers, we show you the top 5 forecasts for the further development of social media in 2020, based on the data set of the marketing platform.

1. TikTok will continue to grow rapidly

One might now think that this is hardly a forecast, but rather a logical conclusion based on this year. It's not that simple, though. If you take a look at the last quarter of TikToks, you will find that the platform had to register a brake on growth for the first time. Furthermore, various controversies were circulating about the app, which called for skepticism and continues to do so: data theft, advertising using TikToks created without the content creators being informed about this, political censorship and not to forget the ban on LGBTQ + content. Many platforms and companies liquidate with far less controversy. To say that TikTok will expand next year is by no means a given.

But TikTok continues to shine as an advertiser on Snapchat and Facebook, where the app takes 1st and 2nd place respectively. In addition, TikTok cooperates with celebrities like Jimmy Fallon and the videos created on TikTok also go viral on other platforms, where they form today's counterpart to the then successful app Vine. The company is also constantly expanding by setting up offices in London and Mountain View, for example, which in turn lure talent away from competitors such as Facebook, Snapchat, Apple and Amazon. Competitive attempts like Lasso from Facebook failed miserably - the app currently seems irrevocable and despite the controversies and an initial brake on growth, it doesn't seem as if we will have to say goodbye to TikTok anytime soon.

2. Influencer marketing will also continue to grow

A prognosis that could well be debatable. After all, there seems to be a consensus among some that influencer marketing will soon come to an abrupt end - but we want to clearly deny that at this point. Yuval Ben-Itzhak from Socialbakers says this:

Consumers are increasingly looking for reviews or ratings and credible voices when making purchasing decisions. This creates great opportunities for influencers and brands to reach the audience together and authentically.

If influencers are authentic and do not give the same impression as, for example, Dieter Bohlen within the Bruzzler-Bratwurst advertising, they remain relevant. Especially in the beauty, fashion, e-commerce and automotive sectors, influencers seem to be on the rise again recently - and it is not foreseeable that this will change in 2020, as fast-paced as the Internet may be. Socialbakers predicts such a surge in investment that influencer marketing could become a $ 10 billion industry within the next year.

3. The breakthrough of VR / AR

For many, VR (Virtual Reality) and AR (Augmented Reality) seem to be just a kind of technical bells and whistles that have found their place in Hollywood and video games, but even there more as a little fun on the side. However, there is great potential here, which the first companies are already making use of. Ben-Itzhak says the following:

At Socialbakers, we know VR is a great opportunity for marketers. Interactive technology can inspire audiences, increase brand awareness, and drive discovery and selling of products. Imagine giving your customers the opportunity to discover products by browsing virtual clothes racks and showrooms - a lifelike experience for your customers that then leads to a purchase. While it could take 5 to 10 years for this technology to become widespread, VR promises to become a powerful tool in the retailer's arsenal.

Gap is already testing the applicability of the technology in their so-called DressingRoom app. In this, potential buyers can try on the selected products within the app. This means that users can already look for suitable clothing sizes from home and, especially in the area of ​​online shopping, this is said to have reduced customer dissatisfaction when concluding a transaction. More tests will certainly follow in 2020 and who knows? VR shopping may already look like this in a few years:

Whether one is interested in it is of course a completely different matter, since this could certainly have dubious consequences, but it would still be technologically impressive.

AR also seems to be increasingly found in shopping at the moment, with Instagram currently being a pioneer in this regard. The big player is currently testing what is known as AR shopping, where users can try on clothes via AR. Basically, this is very similar. It remains to be seen how far this will progress in the next year - but one should definitely keep an eye out for this and not underestimate the intrinsic potential of VR and AR technology. So Ben-Itzhak:

Tech-savvy marketers have experimented with VR in the past, but most make the mistake of underestimating the potential of this technology and seeing it as a flashy gimmick.

4. Social commerce will also continue to grow

Anyone who likes to use the Explore function on Instagram will also be familiar with the shop sector there. Personally, for the most part, the app tries to turn on skinny jeans and women's tops, which could indicate that there is still room for improvement here, but one shouldn't underestimate how superb social commerce can still be - and maybe next year.

According to Socialbakers, the shopping experiences via social media seem to be increasing rapidly, especially in the aforementioned VR area. Accordingly, it seems obvious that we will be able to see even more social commerce in the next year. For example, The Female Company has met with great success on Instagram by promoting their period products on the platform. Perhaps TikTok will start selling metal chains, black jeans and striped long sleeve tops based on the Eboy and Egirl fashion, which is strongly represented there - quite possible, possibly even quite smart, but very doubtful. Although ads are now also available on TikTok - and Hollister reports initial successes in this regard. Ben-Itzhak explains the following:

2020 could be the year in which social commerce will take off and customers purchase products within a social media platform instead of opening the app on a shopping site or being referred to the online store

5. Battle for ad spend between Instagram and Facebook

The winner here is of course Facebook, just not as a social network, but as a company, which includes both of these platforms.

As rudimentary as it may seem, we believe all brands need to consider three key basics when deciding which area to spend their budget in - reach, engagement, and demographics. From then on, a brand can become more precise about which platform makes the most sense for a particular campaign or for a continuous presence.

Although the advertising expenditure on Instagram is increasing now, Facebook is still the front runner. TikTok also invests diligently in Facebook advertising, which is partly responsible for the fact that the app was able to reach so many users. But Instagram, as the platform with the highest engagement rate, has a particularly pronounced potential here, which too many brands have so far underestimated. It seems obvious that this will change in 2020 and that more advertising spending will be made on Instagram.

One conclusion

Due to the exciting conditions for social media this year, such forecasts can only be made. It remains to be seen whether this will come true, but it does seem entirely plausible. To say that an exciting year awaits us with the still untapped potential of Instagram, the rise of TikTok, the establishment of VRs and much more is probably no exaggeration - and we will continue to keep an eye on the social media landscape, just like Socialbakers .