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  • Writer's pictureBrainchild

The social media trends making a comeback for 2024

Ah, social media – always on the move. Facebook turns 20 this year, and it’s got us thinking about some of the 2024 social media trends we were old enough to have seen the first time around. Like fashion, we've seen social tactics rise, fall, and now resurface with a modern twist. But how do they fit into your social strategy for 2024?


As we delve into the ghosts of Facebook's past and explore these returning trends, we're here to ensure you're well-prepared, whether you're scouting for fresh tactics to bolster your 2024 content calendar or simply curious about the social media phenomena making their comeback.




Text-only status updates

The resurgence of the status update is like a nod to the early, simpler days of Facebook, where a clever one-liner was enough to spark conversations and connections. After years of "pics or it didn't happen," text is having its moment... again. Brands are standing out with snappy, quippy one-liners that remind us of the early Facebook days. It's like we never left, and honestly, we're not mad about it. However, unlike those cringey status updates that still haunt us via our memories feed, the organisations doing this well know their audiences and post updates they know are meaningful to them. ZM’s Superbowl commentary is a great recent example of this. They knew their audience would be interested in the halftime show and that the pop culture and music element was a great fit for the youthful radio brand.


For those less experienced with crafting compelling text-only posts, the key lies in understanding your audience deeply and engaging them with relatability and wit. Start small with observations or comments that reflect your brand’s point of view on everyday happenings or current events. The challenge is to be engaging without the support of visuals, so focus on authenticity and relevance to your audience's interests. We’re not saying ditch the pictures altogether, but in an era where images and videos dominate, it’s good to remember that the pen (or keyboard, in this case) can be mightier than the sword. Integrating text-only status updates into your social media strategy diversifies your content mix. It offers a unique opportunity to highlight your brand's personality and foster deeper engagement with your audience.


Getting personal #NoFilter

Following on from the one-line status updates, the move towards vulnerability and authenticity has become more pronounced, especially on professional platforms like LinkedIn. The balance between personal and professional sharing has started to level, allowing individuals to present a more rounded version of themselves without compromising professionalism. It’s a bit like the #NoMakeupSelfie, but more refined. This is a testament to the evolving work culture, where bringing your whole self to work is not just accepted but encouraged. Is this our ‘being ourselves at work era? Because it gets a big tick from us. Businesses that want to get on board this should consider sharing more behind-the-scenes content that speaks to their brand values and culture. Just remember -  it’s got to be real.


"If I get 1,000 likes, Mum will buy me a puppy" posts

This trend was a hallmark of the early 2010s, capturing the essence of social media's burgeoning influence. Kids harnessed the power of social media to bribe their parents (who probably didn’t yet realise the reach of platforms like Facebook). It was a simpler time when we were still trying to understand the value of a ‘like’, and connecting digitally with hundreds was thrilling. We've seen this again recently with a Rascal + Friends employee hustling for followers on the brand page after the boss promised to buy them a ticket to see Taylor Swift if they reached 250k Tik Tok followers.


Brands should tread carefully when using cheap tactics to boost follower counts. However, this approach worked for Rascal + Friends because it wasn't just a bid for likes but a transparent and entertaining peek into the brand's culture, making the engagement feel earned rather than solicited. It was also entertaining, which is kind of the point of social and why it resonated with their audience. The real clincher for Rascal + Friends, however, will be whether these likes are from people who will shop their brand once it's back to usual programming (their social accounts are hilarious, by the way, so you should check them out).


Viral video challenges

Remember the Harlem Shake? Remember when everyone, including your grandma, gave it a shot? That's the spirit we're seeing reincarnated in today's TikTok meme culture. Except it’s at breakneck speed, with new trends popular for shorter periods than 2010 us could have fathomed. This is partly due to the increased ease with which anyone can be a content creator and platform-hosted templates and tools that make it easier to create and create fast. The meme machine rolls on thanks to the unifying power of laughter and light-heartedness. Brands looking to harness this should streamline their approval processes and be ready to act fast. But they should also make sure they can answer these two questions before getting on the bandwagon:

1.      How does this align with my values/brand narrative?

2.      Will my audience care about this?


Longer videos

Snackable videos have been ruling supreme and will continue to have a place, filling scroll holes* around the globe. But in a nod to our evolving digital tastes, longer videos are returning. Social platforms are extending their video lengths, catering to our hunger for more in-depth, engaging content. Think mini-documentaries, insightful interviews, and repurposed podcasts. Influencers are embracing this trend, too, with everything from extended skits to long, selfie-cam stories that you can’t stop watching. We see this as yearning for simpler (ish) times and a desire to be deliberate in social media consumption. And while you will still find us lost in short reels at times, the return of longer videos excites us for its depth of storytelling—a reminder that impactful narratives often need more than just a few seconds to unfold. A word of caution, though: if it can be said in 4 seconds, don't stretch it over 4 minutes because you can. And don’t forget about repurposing wisely - transforming long-form pieces into shorter, impactful snippets to maximise the potential of your content across platforms.

 


So, should your brand jump aboard the comeback trends of 2024? Maybe. But don’t neglect the importance of a strong strategy and, most importantly, a great narrative that shines through your brand and content. It’s never enough to post for posting's sake. And we work pretty hard to keep our client’s brands off unrelated bandwagons. But social media is a platform where experimenting should be encouraged and keeping an eye on trends is a good way to stay current. If you need any help – get in touch.

 

 

*Scroll hole: the all-too-familiar digital vortex encountered by millions daily, where time and space lose meaning as one more 'quick check' of social media spirals into hours lost in the abyss of feeds, stories, and videos. Team Brainchild debated the suitability of this term in our blog post. After much deliberation, laughter, and a couple of office polls, we decided, "Why not?".

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