For marketers, 2018 was without a doubt an exciting year in many ways: in a Nielson survey, this was the year CMOs identified social as the most effective and efficient advertising channel available. Social began following the customer across all aspects of organizations, finally emerging from its marketing silo to become an essential component of the entire customer experience from sales to customer support, and more. Social even became more deeply ingrained in human resources as part of the recruiting experience for candidates.
But it was also the year the social media landscape started shifting. Customers became increasingly aware of who they were interacting with on social and what data they were sharing. Consequently, people began retreating to more private channels like messaging. Circles of influence started shrinking. People leaned less on influencers and big names for endorsements and recommendations, and more on family and friends. The decline in organic social reach and results, along with increased competition in paid social made it even harder for brands to get noticed.