It’s (almost) the new year – and as you look back at your marketing wins and whoopsies of 2023, it’s also a great time to make a plan for the future, including your ✨social media✨.
One recent survey found that 94% of financial advisors use social media for business, and over half reportedly gained new business from that social media activity in the past year. If you’re not using social platforms for your firm, you could be leaving opportunities on the table.
So to help you get started on your 2024 social media strategy, we’ve rounded up ten social media trends your firm should know, from the future of AI to the importance of brand authenticity and beyond.
Related: How Can Financial Advisors Use Social Media?
LinkedIn announced that they’d no longer support carousel posts (and profile videos) back in June of 2023, but it’s officially going into effect on December 13. After that, all previous carousel posts from you or your firm will be deleted and links embedded in such posts will stop working. 👎
Related: Farewell, LinkedIn Carousels | Tres Coronas E11
The switch-up flies in the face of reports supporting carousels as high-engagement – Hootsuite even found that on Instagram, carousel posts have the highest average engagement rate of all post types!
But what does all this mean for firms and their social media managers moving into 2024?
Our take is that LinkedIn’s move likely isn’t reflective of social media as a whole, and it’s still worth it to invest in creating multi-photo and multi-video posts across other social platforms.
Note: Even though LinkedIn is removing carousels as an “official” post type, you will still be able to create carousel-style posts like people used to before LinkedIn turned carousel posts on in the first place. It’s fairly simple, just:
Even with carousels gone, LinkedIn shouldn’t be ignored in 2024.
If you had asked us a year ago what we thought of LinkedIn, we probably would’ve recommended your firm deprioritize it in favor of other platforms. But with the rollercoaster happening on X/Twitter and Threads’ lackluster launch (not to mention the long, slow ride of Facebook into the sunset), LinkedIn is making a comeback as the place to be for B2B professionals.
Related: Automated Linkedin Messaging is Still a Bad Idea for Advisors in 2023
And we’re not the only one taking notice – Semrush’s 2024 Social Media Trends Report focused heavily on TikTok and LinkedIn, stating the two apps would “dominate the social media landscape in 2024, thanks to their engagement capacity and evolving abilities.”
Some of the biggest pros of LinkedIn listed in the report include:
For firms big and small, 2024 will be a great time to invest in authentic, personal content that can draw in prospects and build your network – and LinkedIn is a great place to do just that.
Related: The Financial Professional’s Guide to LinkedIn
While artificial intelligence has been quietly evolving in the past few decades, ChatGPT exploded onto the content creation scene in the past year or so, giving social media managers a new tool to streamline their creative processes.
But amid the excitement, the Hootsuite Social Trends 2024 Report notes that brands will have to balance AI’s efficiency with the need for authentic content.
Essentially, organizations are jumping at the chance to embrace AI and reduce operational costs, while “62% of consumers say they are less likely to engage with and trust content if they know it was created by an AI application.”
If your audience can tell your posts were written by AI, it might be holding you back from social media success.
Related: Click here to watch ChatGPT vs. Big Brand Social Posts: Who Wrote It? | Tres Coronas E6
That doesn’t mean you should swear off AI-generated content – it just means that your firm should use tools like ChatGPT as just that: a tool.
As you explore how AI could help you draft social content in 2024, we recommend you take the time to learn best practices for commands, give ample time to address compliance concerns and make sure to give it that much-needed human touch.
By now, everyone’s heard of the great Twitter to X rebrand – which took users by surprise in July 2023 months after Elon Musk made the highly publicized purchase. And throughout the past year, users have reported issues with X’s analytics feature, complaints about the new high-priced verification system and an end to free API access many compliance tools require.
Related: Twitter vs. Threads | Tres Coronas E2
The uncertainty surrounding the platform has driven many from the site entirely, with Statista reporting a 14.5 million user drop from 2022 to 2023. They anticipate a continued decline in 2024, predicting another 18.2 million users to leave.
Elon himself just said this week that if advertisers boycott X it will kill the platform and he’s willing to “let the chips fall where they may,” which doesn’t instill a lot of confidence.
With all the chaos surrounding X, it may be a good time to invest in other channels.
If you feel like people’s attention spans are shorter than they used to be, it’s not all in your head. CBS News reports that the average attention span has shortened from about two and a half minutes to just 47 seconds in the past two decades. Articles, movie shots and other content forms have followed the lead, creating more digestible pieces of entertainment for consumers.
Social media is no different – people enjoy quick, accessible content (like TikTok videos, which average between about 38 and 50 seconds long).
If you have longer social media posts you’d like to share, think about how you can break them down into smaller, separate posts – or use formatting techniques like bullet points and carousels to make the posts more visually appealing/scannable.
Similarly, longer videos that you’ve posted to YouTube could be shortened and posted to different platforms to drive engagement.
Related: A Content Repurposing Workflow for Financial Advisors
TikTok has somewhere around 1 billion active users each month, a result of continuous global growth in the past few years.
And even more interesting? A recent study found that 41% of TikTok users turn to the app for financial advice. 🤯 💰
Almost every major social media network allows and encourages video use – from YouTube Shorts to Instagram Reels and even Facebook Live. And some experts predict that videos will make up over 80% of all online content in 2024.
So how can financial professionals like you embrace the trend and make a bigger impact next year?
Video posts don’t need a fancy studio, high-tech equipment or even a video editor to get prospects’ attention. Sometimes, just grabbing your phone and hitting “record” is the right move.
And if you need inspiration or direction for your video posts, it might be worth exploring:
Related: The Advisor’s Guide to Videos, Podcasts and Webinars
Marketing Mag writes: “Storytelling is a creator’s most prized attribute.”
The need for transparent and authentic storytelling is especially apparent in financial services, where clients are entrusting you with personal information and impactful decisions.
Deirdre Van Nest, Finance and Sales Keynote Speaker and Founder of Crazy Good Talks, recently echoed that sentiment in our ”On the Circuit” podcast, noting that financial professionals need to tell a story that builds trust with clients and prospects.
If your firm wants to build connections over social media in 2024, you’ll need to embrace your storytelling abilities and publish content that shows off the people, mission and values behind your brand.
Related: What’s in a Brand? | Tres Coronas E9
Think about why you got started in the finance industry to begin with and what aspects of your daily job you really enjoy – those moments will offer a great starting point for your own story (and maybe inspire some social media posts).
Another hot topic for 2024 is the use of social media as a search engine – which might “represent the biggest threat to traditional search engines.” And as we stated above, a large portion of TikTok users are already using the platform for financial guidance.
With that in mind, it may be helpful to apply search engine optimization (SEO) techniques to your social media posts in 2024, such as:
Much like traditional search engines, social media platforms employ algorithms to determine content relevance for users – but each platform has a different method of choosing which posts get in front of each individual.
For the social media platforms you intend to use in 2024, spend some time researching their algorithms. Do they like links in posts or are they better off in the comment section? Will they favor profiles that are interacting with others more often?
Knowing the answers to these questions can help you craft content that appeals to both your audience and the algorithms running things behind the scenes.
It’s no secret that social media is a great way to establish your firm’s credibility and connect with prospects, clients and other professionals – but it’s also time-consuming.
A single social media post might require:
And that doesn’t include any time for marketing strategy or browsing related content on the platform, either.
We already know that you’re short on time as an advisor, so any tools that can create efficiency and streamline the process are a huge asset. Luckily, there are plenty available, from Buffer’s scheduling software to Iconosquare’s visual-first approach.
Here at Three Crowns, we employ a mix of totally custom images made by our graphic design team with the good ol’ fashioned graphics available on Canva – and Planable is our go-to scheduling tool to manage several social media accounts in one place.
Related: Which Social Media Scheduling App Do Most Advisors Use?
Of course, the social media tools that work best for your firm are entirely dependent on your needs. Think through what aspects of social media content you’ll need the most help with next year. Do you want to schedule several posts ahead of time and then forget about it? Need help coming up with compelling visuals to accompany your posts? Maybe you need assistance with hashtag research or a reliable archival process.
Once you have a list in hand, you can research and connect with social media software providers and find the tool(s) that best align with your needs.
While the new year is a great time to revisit your social media strategy and make goals, it’s equally important that you choose goals you can (and will) realistically stick to throughout 2024.
Three TikTok videos, four Tweets and a long-form LinkedIn post each week all sound great – but does your team have the bandwidth to consistently meet those goals? Social followers may be unhappy if they come to expect regular content from your firm, only for you to unexpectedly stop once the busy season picks up.
Related: 8 Steps to Creating a Repeatable Content Production Process for Your Firm
If that’s a concern, you’ll either need to reevaluate your social media goals, outsource some of the content creation and/or hire more staff to meet those demands.
As you begin preparing your marketing plan for the new year, these trends offer a great guidepost for where you should (and shouldn’t) focus your energy and can offer inspiration for your digital marketing. And if you need any help along the way, feel free to explore our digital marketing solutions made for financial professionals like you!
Kick off your 2024 marketing with the team of dedicated experts at Three Crowns. Click here to schedule a complimentary consultation today.