The decade brought massive changes to marketing via social media
AZ Media Maven, a boutique social media marketing and public relations agency in the Phoenix area, celebrates 10 years in business this month. Imagine that when we started, Facebook had yet to acquire Instagram (that takeover occurred in April 2012), Clubhouse didn’t exist, and Twitter was just getting ready to acquire Vine in October of 2012.
Massive changes swept the field of marketing during the past decade, meaning as a business AZ Media Maven has adapted to the constant changes to stay current, and more importantly, to ensure our clients remain relevant online.
When we began in 2012 social media marketing and online advertising were not in their infancy, but maybe still teenagers. Today, they’re sophisticated tools requiring a level of understanding that most business owners don’t have the time or patience to tackle.
Remember when Facebook had a Wall?
When I joined Facebook in 2007, we could “poke” or “wave” at friends on their “walls” and there wasn’t any algorithm deciding what you’d get to see … or not see, which has become a major headache for marketers. In 2011, the Wall was replaced with Timelines, which have undergone multiple new versions. That’s just one sea change that has transformed social media from a friendly place to chat with family and friends to a world-changing technology with wide-ranging influence.
Social media managers now need to know much more than how to post a photo for clients. They create graphics; generate analytical reports; follow data trends for posting times, best content, demographics for best platforms for specific businesses; and more. Not to mention, the focus has become on “pay to play”—no matter how good your strategy, if you don’t advertise on most platforms, it is harder and harder to get traction.
Speaking of platforms, the sheer number out there now can be overwhelming, which means it’s harder these days to get your company noticed. When we started, Facebook and Twitter were the kings of the hill and Google+ (RIP) was trying to get a foothold. LinkedIn was firmly established but hadn’t yet tapped into the social aspect nor the paid advertising.
Now, we have the visually driven Instagram. The photo-sharing platform started in 2010 but after being bought two years later by Facebook, it has grown exponentially to currently more than 1 billion monthly users. Snapchat, started in 2011, also has matured in the past decade. The instant messaging platform now has stories, business profiles, and advertising opportunities.
Pinterest, created in 2010, has matured into much more than a crafting and hobbies platform and boasts nearly 450 million monthly users worldwide. Newcomer TikTok, launched in 2016, has changed the landscape on social media in just a little over 5 years, pushing other platforms to offer similar video content such as Reels on Instagram (launched in August 2020) and Stories on LinkedIn (launched September 2020.)
Why social media experts are needed
All these platforms and numerous others are vying for attention and serving a wide span of demographics. It can be mind-boggling for business owners to sift through. On top of choosing which platforms to work with, developing on-brand content is essential. Simple photos aren’t always enough to capture views. Well-designed graphics using advanced programs are a must, and with the advent of TikTok and Reels, it’s often necessary to produce slick videos to really drive your brand. The savvy use of hashtags has become important as well.
In addition, more outlets are cropping up with specific political viewpoints (Parler and Telegram, for example), and knowing how to navigate the rough waters of political speech—or how to sidestep it—helps define a business. It’s also wise to notice when platforms are sinking and not to invest in them anymore. Remember Vine and Periscope? Both came and went in the past 10 years—though one of Vine’s founders launched a re-imagined platform, Byte, in January 2020, that has since rebranded as Clash.
Simply put, successful businesses need someone with the skills to produce top-notch content in a variety of ways, place it correctly, and buy ads that complement social media strategy. To do this well, many large companies hire people full-time as social media managers, and small businesses contract agencies like AZ Media Maven. We thank our clients for their support over the past 10 years and we look forward to serving you for many more!
AZ Media Maven is based in Laveen, AZ, a suburban village in the greater Phoenix area. Owner Rose Tring has more than 30 years of journalism experience as an editor and writer, many of those years in business news. AZ Media Maven was created in 2012 to serve other business owners in learning how to best use social media and to provide affordable public relations services.
Reach AZ Media Maven at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (602) 373-8371.