How will social networks evolve in 2023?

They punctuate our lives like never before. From Facebook to TikTok, social networks are looking for new ways to encourage followers to buy or better expose them to advertising. Not to mention Twitter’s ambitions…

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Elon Musk’s acquisition of Twitter was an earthquake that put the industry under pressure.“For Xavier Degraux, digital marketing consultant, this is the most significant news of the year in the digital scenario. “Twitter’s dossier is accelerating transformations, reorienting players’ strategies, leading to reflection on economic models, content moderation, formats for the future. In short, it changes everything.

On social networks, time certainly passes faster than in real life, but the changes are not so drastic. As proof: despite repeated defeat announcements, Facebook is still the most used network in the world (2.9 billion active users). The podium is completed by YouTube (2.5 billion) and WhatsApp (2 billion). However, the media and experts only have TikTok on their lips. This is not trivial because it is a favorite of teenagers. It should also overtake Facebook in four years. That partly explains why Meta, which also owns WhatsApp and Instagram, has just laid off an eighth of its staff. Another reason lies in their investments in the Metaverse, which will not prevail in 2023.

Also Read: Facebook’s Five-Digit Drop

Maha Karim-Hosselet, founder of the digital agency MKKM Social Media, points out another certainty: “I take little risk in saying that 2023 will be the year of the spools”. As for the rest, various trends are emerging. “In 2022, everyone copied TikTok, in particular developing short vertical videos, “reels” or “shorts” on YouTube”, observes Xavier Degraux. But now it’s Chinese social media’s turn to take inspiration in large part from a French competitor that has the wind behind it: BeReal. Like its competitor, TikTok Now’s concept is as follows: post a photo taken simultaneously with both cell phone cameras at a random time decided by the app. Thus, the user does not have time to prepare. “It’s anti-Instagram surfing on a wave that has accelerated sharply: fed up with communications operations, marketing, personal branding. Here there is less time to influence it, because there is less preparation time.

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Marketing, influence and advertising can obviously exist on these platforms. “The world of influence is focusing on communities on a more human scale and is moving away from macro models a bit. We are less in the “One to Many” model and more in the “One to One” model because the impact is simply greater.” It is also why instant messengers like Messenger and WhatsApp do not age, with advertising that will increase on these platforms.

Click is buy

Maha Karim-Hosselet evokes a trend, the opposite of the previous one, but which can coexist with it in the market: social commerce. “All platforms from Facebook to TikTok integrate sales leads directly into social networks. The arrival of new players like Amazon’s Inspire confirms this trend. This is what digital leaders are betting on: encouraging users to buy products with a few clicks, without going through a third-party website or page. This is the logical continuity of marketing in 2022. Communication between merchants and customers will be strengthened.“In this context, artificial intelligence will reach its peak in 2023. AI enables the development of more aggressive marketing techniques, based on consumer data collected in recent years. The aim is to anticipate their needs and influence them more effectively than in 2022.

Also read: How to protect your kids (or yourself) from fraudulent influencers

Maha Karim-Hosselet concludes: “All platforms are becoming all-in-one and all-in-one. Only time will tell which initiatives will work and which will not.” With a fantasy that is perhaps difficult to achieve, but noticeable both from the Twitter side of Elon Musk with his “X” project, and from Meta with its metaverse. The two dream of creating a Western-style WeChat, a kind of super multifunctional application that allows content sharing, electronic commerce, bank management, professional meetings… liberal democracies. At least not in 2023, despite all the efforts coming from Californian billionaires…

7 important dates

January 26: The TikTok Explosion
In its annual report, TikTok shows massive growth (+215%) and outperforms Snapchat (+184%). The app reached one billion monthly active users in 2022.

February 2: The fall of Facebook
For the first time since 2004, Facebook has seen its number of users drop. While it remains the world’s number one social media, Meta shares have lost a quarter of their value.

July: the advance of BeReal
The French social network topped the list of downloads last summer. Downloaded 53 million times, BeReal received the “App of the Year” award from the App Store.

October 7: The Failure of the Metaverse
For its 1st anniversary, the Facebook Horizon Worlds metaverse has a sad record: 200,000 monthly users, instead of the 500,000 expected by Zuckerberg.

October 28: Acquisition of Twitter
Elon Musk buys the social network for 44 billion dollars.

December 8: The arrival of Amazon
The e-commerce giant announces the launch of Inspire, which looks a lot like TikTok, with the ambition of facilitating the sale of products directly through the personal page of influencers or brands.

December 28: 20 years of LinkedIn
The professional network is more discreet than its competitors, but it is the most stable.

Find our archive The 2022 retrospective

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