Today in the FHR Scouting Report, we discuss the trends we’re looking out for in the social and digital spaces in the coming years. At the dawn of a new decade, a growing anxiety around data privacy will put pressure on companies and social platforms to develop ethical data collection practices. The desire for privacy is on the rise and therefore public social platforms are at risk and must innovate to keep up. We’ll be watching for these trends and others in the social and digital realm.
Social: Privacy and transparency will shape the social landscape
New privacy laws are impacting the digital ecosystem and social platforms are scrambling to keep up. Platforms will need to think of creative ways to engage their users without compromising the ROI for advertisers. We expect to see new placement and targeting options (we’re watching you TikTok) to draw advertisers in, giving them access to both mass and niche markets in more meaningful ways.
With an ever-increasing desire for privacy, users will resort to less public social platforms, like private FB groups and chats (or Google Docs for Gen Z!). To keep up, social platforms will need to develop new public features with mass appeal.
“Improved transparency in social advertising from brands will be essential.”
And finally - it’s not rocket science; people don’t want to be lied to. They want to know who is marketing to them, what they’re selling and how it benefits them. Improved transparency in social (including influencer) advertising from brands will be essential. This is particularly important leading up to the 2020 US presidential election. People are tired of fake and misleading content and will pay attention to how social channels handle political advertising.
Digital: Honest and ethical companies will come out on top
An increase of capabilities surrounding data brings discussions of privacy and ethics to the forefront. A shift in consumer awareness regarding privacy issues is taking place, and companies should pay attention. Ultimately, the brands that will fare the best are those that disclose the fine print when collecting customer data, and give users a value-add reason to opt-in. Brands that lack transparency will appear disingenuous and lose in the end.
“Brands that lack transparency will appear disingenuous and lose in the end.”
In this data-centric world, companies must tread carefully when it comes to their customer’s information. As tools for data management and analysis become more sophisticated, the stakes get even higher. Ethical collection practices will gradually become a norm.
In the wake of all this change; shifting social attitudes and new legislation, the social and digital worlds will experience a shift in priorities. The importance of privacy and ethics is sure to define this decade.